It’s just a mile along the bluffs from the point where Linden Avenue meets the beach. The walk is spectacular and offers views down on the harbor seal preserve and long stretches of beach just itching to be explored. If you have time, it’s another mile to Rincon Point-the perfect length for a good workout and 3-4 hours of beach time.
From State Street, follow Highway 101 east for 10.5 miles to the Linden Avenue turnoff. To reach the beach follow Linden a half mile to the ocean, where there is plenty of on-street parking. To reach the County Park, turn left on Carpinteria Avenue, then right two blocks east of Linden onto Palm Street. Follow this towards the ocean to the park entrance.
The Harbor Seal Preserve is closed to entry from December 1 through May 31. Please observe the closure. Dogs and seals make a bad mix. If you bring yours with you make sure it is on a leash when you are anywhere near the Seal Preserve. Please be respectful of private property rights.
Wide expanses of beach, gentle surf, and excellent claming during periods of minus tides make this beach a walker’s paradise. There is lots of space in the park for day use or overnight stays, or you can walk east through the park and bluff tops to the City Park with your picnic supplies for a more remote barbecue.
Carpinteria advertises its beaches as the world’s safest and they surely seem that way; in either direction they are wide and flat, with plenty of hard-packed sand for building sand castles or playing frisbee. I love hiking in either direction though you can usually only go a half mile of so to the west unless the tide is extremely low or you don’t mind getting your legs wet. This is the more crowded portion of the beach but it is very nice walking along the beachfront houses to the rock jetties.
East of Linden the walking is very mellow as well, the first half mile of the beach leading you past the state park until you eventually reach a series of bluffs. There are picnic tables situated in very scenic locations along the bluffs and your kids will love the view down on the harbor seals from the point just east of the pier. To reach the viewing area you will need to walk through the Chevron parking area.