Bailard Beach, Carpinteria Bluffs Nature Preserve
Bailard Beach, Carpinteria Bluffs Nature Preserve is a hidden gem of the Southern/Central California coast, including a cliff walk with spectacular Pacific Ocean views, beach tide pools, and a seal sanctuary.
For starters, the cliff walk is an extremely accessible trail (parking is in a lot just off the 101 freeway offramp) that extends one mile to Bailard Beach, a part of the Carpinteria Bluffs Nature Preserve. Follow the dirt path towards the ocean and veer to the right. The trail has a split with a trail heading down and left to the sand that is Bailard Beach. At low tide the tide pools are exposed between captivating rows of tilted rock uplift.
Additionally, the main trail requires a stop shortly after the Bailard Beach turn-off. Across the railroad tracks at the Carpinteria Seal Sanctuary the public can view baby seals from a trail overlook December through May. Overall, the trail is flat and very scenic with extensive views of the Pacifc Ocean, and worth a few hours to explore.