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Goleta (go-lee-ta) is a city a few miles west of Santa Barbara and part of the contiguous urban area of Santa Barbara, within Santa Barbara County, California. This article also covers the unincorporated community of Isla Vista, which is home to the University of California at Santa Barbara.



 Climate Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
Daily highs (°F) 64 64 65 67 69 71 73 74 74 72 68 64
Nightly lows (°F) 41 44 46 48 51 54 58 58 56 51 44 40
Precipitation (in) 3.5 4.0 3.2 1.0 0.3 0.1 0.0 0.1 0.3 0.8 1.6 2.9

See Goleta's 7 day forecast    Data from NOAA (1981-2010)

Get in[edit]

Goleta is located just off Highway 101, north of Santa Barbara.

There is an Amtrak stop in Goleta (unmanned) and a fully serviced station in downtown Santa Barbara.

Santa Barbara Municipal Airport is located in Goleta, off Highway 217.

Buses run frequently between Santa Barbara, Goleta and the UCSB campus.

Get around[edit]


There are lots of little parks scattered along Del Playa.

  • University of California, Santa Barbara, 101 north to Highway 217. UCSB is often listed as one of the top public universities in the United States. The campus is regarded as one of the more beautiful campuses among the UC system (perhaps due to its location). Head to the top floor of the campus library for one of the best views of the whole campus. Much of the campus, especially the areas near the beach, is undeveloped open space, and includes a man-made lagoon. From downtown Santa Barbara, take the highway and go past the airport exit. Admission is free to the campus, but parking costs, and parking restrictions are heavily enforced.
  • 1 Goleta Butterfly Grove (exit Highway 101 at Hollister Ave, then travel 0.6 miles on Hollister towards the ocean). Daylight hours only. Every winter between mid-November and mid-February monarch butterflies gather in huge numbers in a grove adjacent to the Sperling Preserve. Docents are available on weekends from 11AM-2PM. Free parking is available at the Ellwood Mesa Open Space on Hollister Ave, and the grove is located at the end of a one-half mile long trail. Free, donations accepted.
  • Campus Point. Provides a great view of the ocean


Popular activities include music festivals (usually located in the park), or concerts on campus. Performances are given on and off campus given by the local Improv troupe, or by comedians such as Jon Stewart. Visiting the beach and riding beach cruisers are also options to consider.

  • Laughology. Free stand-up comedy show that has brought comedians such as Kyle Cease


  • 1 [dead link] Deckers Brand Showcase, 6601 Hollister Ave, +1 805 728-1640. M-Sa 10AM-7PM, Su 10AM-5PM. The multi-brand retail store offers the Deckers brands with products ranging from luxury comfort, outdoor, surf lifestyle, fashion and running.
  • Hempwise (Cannabis Culture), 971 Embarcadero del Mar, +1 805-685-9383. 11AM-7PM.
  • Isla Vista Surf Shop.
  • Miss Behavin', 6551 Trigo Rd. Clothing + Accessories
  • Precious Slut. Tattoos and Piercings.


  • Cantina. Mexican: Great Breakfast burritos
  • Freebird's. Mexican: Burritos, Nachos, Tacos, etc.
  • Giovanni's. Italian.
  • Javan's. Sandwich Shop.
  • Kaptain's Firehouse BBQ. BBQ.
  • Keg N' Bottle. Market.
  • Kogilicious. Korean.
  • Naan Stop. Indian.
  • The Natural Café and juice bar, 5892 Hollister Ave, +1 805 962-9494, e-mail: . Mon-Sun 11AM-9PM. Outdoor, sidewalk dining that is healthy and good. If there is a vegan/vegetarian in the group, they will be happy here. Part of a small regional chain.
  • Pita Pit. Pita Shop.
  • Sam's-To-Go!. Sandwich Shop: Known for beer pitchers and afternoon people watching.
  • Silvergreen's. Healthy salads, sandwiches, and pasta.
  • Super Cucas. Mexican.
  • Woodstock's. Pizza.
  • 1 Z's Taphouse and Grill (Zodo's Bowling and Beyond), 5925 Calle Real, +1 805 967-0128. Sun–Tue 11AM–11PM, Wed-Sat 11AM–12 Midnight. This is a lively bowling alley, a sports bar with 40 beers on tap and nearly as many big TV screens, and a burgers, pizzas and salads restaurant. Tables overlook the bowling area. Service is sometimes slow; you might have to remind your server that you exist. "Lunch and bowl" special, Mon–Fri 11AM–2PM. Burgers $10–15, pizzas $8–25.
  • 2 Domingo's Cafe, 5782 Hollister Ave (at the corner of Tecolote Ave), +1 (805) 967-0655. Daily 6AM–2PM. A hybrid of Mexican restaurant with (anglo) American diner. Choose between huevos rancheros and hotcakes for breakfast; either are delicious. A pleasant family-restaurant feel. Free wifi. $10-15.


Many restaurants serve beer, and the local Study Hall Bar is the best place for spirits. Many local partake in what is known as "the loop", which is going to all the places in Isla Vista that serve beer, and having a beer. By going to all beer-serving establishments, a loop is made. Del Playa Dr. ("D.P.") is the street closest to the ocean. Here is where the majority of the house parties are. On most nights there will be "Keg Parties", and students walking around.


  • Coffee Collaborative. Coffee.
  • Java Jones. Coffee


  • The Mercury Lounge, 5871 Hollister Ave., +1 805-967-0907. 5PM onwards. Relaxed bar with lots of comfortable seating, both inside and on the covered rear patio. Billiards, popcorn, hip decorations, occasional live music and a good record collection.
  • S.O.S.. Liquor Store.


  • 1 Bacara Resort & Spa, 8301 Hollister Ave. Check-in: 12PM, check-out: 4PM. Located on 78 acres of oceanfront property, this resort is an upscale experience that caters to luxury travelers. There are 354 guest rooms in 19 separate villas, each in a Spanish style. Property amenities include saline infinity pools, a private beach, clay tennis courts, a 42,000 foot spa and fitness center, and nature trails through the adjoining wetland and forest. The onsite Miro restaurant provides great views of the coast with excellent food and service. With all that said, you pay for the experience, and this resort is not for the budget traveler. In addition to quoted rates there is a $25 per day resort fee that includes a bottle of wine in your room, two bottles of water, access to fitness center and spa, and internet access. $300-$1000+.
  • 2 Best Western South Coast Inn, 5620 Calle Real, +1 805 967-3200, toll-free: +1-800-350-3614, fax: +1 805 683-4466. Check-in: 3pm, check-out: 12pm. $210-330.
  • 3 Hampton Inn Goleta, 5665 Hollister Ave, +1-805-681-9800, fax: +1-805-681-9844. Check-in: 3pm, check-out: 12pm. Offers king and queen hotel rooms and suites including complimentary beverages and breakfast. $234-290.
  • 4 The Goodland, 5650 Calle Real, +1-805 964-6241, toll-free: +1(877) 480-1465, fax: +1 (805) 964-8467. Previously called the Hotel Goleta, this is now part of the high-service Kimpton hotel chain. $160-305.
  • 5 Motel 6 Santa Barbara - Goleta, 5897 Calle Real (on US 101 at Fairview Ave), +1 805 964-3596, fax: +1 805 683-0647. Member of a national discount motel chain. $129-140.

Go next[edit]

  • Santa Barbara - Located eight miles east of Goleta, the "American Riviera" is a historic mission city that is an incredibly popular getaway destination. Its wide beaches, highly rated wineries, luxurious resorts, art galleries, and a large variety of excellent dining choices, enable the town of just 90,000 residents to enjoy the sort of cultural and social amenities which are usually found only in much larger cities.
  • Lompoc - 48 miles north of Goleta, Lompoc is nicknamed the "City of Arts and Flowers", with more than half the world's flower seeds grown in the fields around the town. The city celebrates its association with flowers every June during the Lompoc Valley Flower festival. The area is also home to Vandenberg Air Force Base, America's west coast spaceport, where rocket launches can sometimes be seen.
  • Buellton - Located 35 miles to the northwest, Buellton is home to several Santa Ynez Valley wineries. Visitors will also find the ostrich & emu farm interesting, with the opportunity to get up close and personal with the giant birds.
Routes through Goleta
San Luis ObispoBuellton  N US 101.svg S  Santa BarbaraLos Angeles
San Luis ObispoLompoc  W California 1.svg E  Santa BarbaraLong Beach
San Luis ObispoGuadalupe  N Amtrak Pacific Surfliner Icon.png S  Santa BarbaraLos Angeles

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