The small but charming coastal town of Carpinteria is located on the south coast of Santa Barbara County with an estimated population of 13,600. It is one of the Central Coasts hidden gems with its quiet beaches, local natural beauty, and a fine selection of shops and eateries within walking distance along Linden and Carpinteria Avenues.
THINGS TO DO
Enjoy swimming and sandcastle building at Carpinteria State Beach and explore the areas many tide pools at low tide. 205 Palm Avenue (from the park entrance, head down-coast along the beach). Rincon Beach Park and Rincon Beach (Bates Road) are also fine beach day selections.
Take a coastal hike or guided tour through the 15-acre Carpinteria Salt Marsh Nature Park of 1 Ash Avenue (805-684-5405).
If gardens are more your thing you can experience Seaside Gardens, an amazing botanical garden experience. Tip: Check out the koi pond.
Carpinteria Bluffs Nature Preserve of 5905 Carpinteria Avenue (805-684-5405) offers hikers a glimpse of the area’s natural wonders with its breathtaking bluffs, coastal trails, and sea life. If you’re lucky you might spot some dolphins, seals or even whales in the distance as you take in the beauty of your surroundings.
If museums and history are of interest you might consider stopping off at the Carpinteria Valley Museum of History of 956 Maple Street. Though small and seldom crowded, this informative museum offers a decent collection of artifacts to take in while you take your tour.
Palm Loft Gallery is another great local attraction if you fancy art and browsing art galleries.
Shop surfboards by Matt Moore at Rincon Design of 659 Linden Avenue. Looking to catch some waves during your visit? They also rent surfboards and wet suits and may even offer the best spots to catch that perfect wave.
Hungry for a juicy bacon cheddar burger or some fish and chips? Perhaps you’re thirsty for some signature craft beer? Checkout Rincon Brewery of 5065 Carpinteria Avenue near the infamous Rincon Surf Spot. They offer a dog-friendly patio if you prefer to dine outdoors. Enjoy fresh soup, salad, sliders, tacos, desserts, sandwiches or burgers outside in the sun and fresh ocean air before, after or in between hitting the waves and “walking the nose” at Rincon.
Are there kids in your clan? No problem. Check out the playground at Tomol Interpretive Play Area of 300 Block Linden Avenue. Your kids will thank you and you can still enjoy that beer across the way at Island Brewery while you watch them play. The brewery also offers a kids area inside.
Whimsy Antiques of 5042 7th Street (805-684-7211) brings out the treasure hunter in all who pass through her doors with a nice selection of jewelry, art, vintage clothing, & fine furnishings.
Locals and visitors who venture downtown may experience the morning cup of Joe from a number of coffee shops. The Lucky Llama Coffee House of 5100 Carpinteria Avenue (805-684-8811) offers an outdoor patio where patrons may enjoy their espresso, muffins, or acai bowl in the sun.
Spend the evening diving into a hot panini, lobster mac-and-cheese, blackened salmon Caesar salad while dining at the Corktree Cellars Wine Bar and Bistro of 910 Linden Avenue (805-684-1400).
If you’re in search of a quiet coastal town with beautiful beaches, breathtaking mountain views, and a diverse economy, perhaps you should consider the charm and natural beauty of small-town Carpinteria for your next travel destination. It is quite literally a wonderful place to live, work and play.
Call to confirm hours and availability of local businesses and attractions before you visit this charming coastal town.