The ocean is one of the many reasons that people flock to Santa Barbara from all over. Down by the Santa Barbara Harbor, there are a whole bunch of activities that are great for all ages, all skill levels, and of course, all kinds of travelers. Here are some of our favorite activities to do in the Santa Barbara Harbor.
What are fun activities to do in the Santa Barbara Harbor?
1) The Santa Barbara Fun Paddle kayak tour is a 2-hour guided tour that’s a great experience for those who want something fun & relaxing and want to hit the water but don’t have a lot of time. This tour is great for kids, older adults, and travelers with a tight schedule. You can explore the harbor boats, and even take a tour under the Santa Barbara Wharf! Our favorite thing to do is catch some snapshots of hulled out seals sunning themselves and of course, picking our favorite dream sailboat!
2) Stop in and visit the Santa Barbara Maritime Museum. We love learning more about the history of the area and seeing the wooden boats. They are closed on Wednesdays but open every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday & Sundays from 10-5pm and Saturdays from 9-3pm. The museum is free for children ages 1-5 and active military. Seniors (65+), students with IDS, and youth (6-17) are just $5 and adults are $8. Learn more on their website.
3) The Santa Barbara Harbor kayak tour is a slightly longer tour than the short Santa Babara Harbor Fun Paddle. The 4-hour tour is great for those who love the water and want to see and learn more even about the natural history, and unique wildlife of Santa Barbara. After completing a loop of the harbor, your guide will take you just past the harbor seawall to a buoy frequented by lots of sea lions. Our favorite part of our Harbor Kayak is landing for a beachside picnic lunch in the middle of your tour. Your guide will become your chef and you’ll have some time to kick back and relax a bit before hitting the water post lunch for more sightseeing. You might even have the opportunity to catch a few waves on this longer kayak tour!
4) Grab a seat & bowl of clam chowder at Brophy Bros. Resturant. Brophy’s offers a fun, lively atmosphere with beautiful views of the mountains and harbor. We love sitting at the bar to chat up the locals & catching the incredible view beyond. If you’re not a chowder fan you can’t go wrong with their crab cakes or beer battered fish & chips!
5) Looking for some evening fun in the Santa Barbara Harbor? For those looking for a safe, fun, and romantic evening our Santa Barbara Harbor Sunset Paddle is a must do. As you kayak around the harbor the sun dips low in the sky and all of Santa Barbara is painted with the most beautiful peach and orange colors. What’s better still, is you’ll have the best view from the water! It’s a relaxing 2.5-3-hour tour, with all the information and wildlife opportunities as the Harbor Kayak.
Why would I want a guided kayak tour vs. renting kayaks?
Number one is always safety. Having a guide with you who has experience and training under their belt is important for each client to walk away feeling safe and having fun the whole time they are exploring. A guided tour also allows you to get the most out of your experience out on the water. Whether it be learning about the history of Santa Barbara, our rich maritime roots, catching a unique wildlife sighting, or just having someone to ask questions to, our guides are equipped and knowledgeable to handle it all.
What if I don’t want to kayak?
No problem! If you are still looking to be in the harbor and on the water, we can offer Stand-Up-Paddleboarding Lessons and tours. If you haven’t ever tried SUPing, it’s a great activity to test your balance and gives you a great work out! Or we could do a fun seaside bike starting from the Harbor. Our seaside bike tour takes you from the Harbor area all the way to Butterfly Beach & up State Street. We’ll stop to explore the clock tower at the courthouse and maybe even get a scoop of McConnell’s icea cream! There are lots of different activities that are great for any kind of traveler. Check out our website to learn more. https://sbadventure.wpengine.com/