Santa Barbara Beaches
|Beachfront or Blufftop:||Bluff|
|Number of Homes:||39 Park-front; 97 bluff-top|
|Public Access:||Stairs, Public Parking|
|Walk to Shops/Dining:||Yes|
|Sandy or Rocky:||Sandy|
The residences along the oceanfront in Santa Barbara can be divided into four separate areas, not including Hope Ranch (which has its own section on this website).
Beginning at the furthest South (which is actually East, as the ocean in Santa Barbara is South), one comes to the homes across from Shoreline Park. There are 39 homes that are situated just across the street from the wonderful Shoreline Park and these “Park-front” homes offer beautiful ocean and park views. Shoreline Park offers acres of green grass, walking and bike paths, abundant picnic tables and a beautiful new playground.
Continuing West, there are 28 bluff-top homes along Shoreline Drive, each with sweeping ocean and island views. These homes do not have their own staircases down to the water, but instead access the sand by way of a staircase known as “One Thousand Steps” (which is a misnomer, although after climbing up it, one might think otherwise!)
Further West, past a break in the residences due to a lighthouse, one comes to a part of Santa Barbara’s popular “Mesa” neighborhood along which there are 39 bluff-top homes and a great many non-oceanfront homes. Only a couple of these homes have their own access down to the beach; most access the sand from the “Mesa Lane Steps.” Homeowners in this area delight in their proximity to the “Douglas Family Preserve,” a 70 acre bluff-top park that abuts Arroyo Burro Beach, known to locals as “Hendry’s Beach” and the home of the brand new “The Boathouse at Hendry’s Beach” restaurant.
Finally, just past Hendry’s Beach, there is a string of 30 bluff-top homes along Cliff Drive, including four behind the gates of “Las Gaviotas” and eight behind the gates at Sea Ledge Lane. Almost all of these homes are on well over an acre and many are gated and beautifully landscaped. Here too only a couple homes have access to the sand from their own property and instead enjoy mostly “blue water” ocean and island views.