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Refugio State Beach, Goleta

3.8
#3 of 13 in Things to do in Goleta
State Park · Nature / Park
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Refugio State Beach (Chumash: Qasil, "Beautiful") is a protected state beach park in California, United States, approximately 20 miles (32 km) west of Santa Barbara. One of three state parks along the Gaviota Coast, it is 2.5 miles (4.0 km) west of El Capitán State Beach. During the summer months, the Junior Life Guard program resides at the beach during the day.

The Refugio oil spill occurred just north of the park in 2015 when a pipeline carrying crude oil ruptured. The spill went into a culvert that ran under US 101 and into the ocean. The spill spread over 7 miles (11 km) of coastline, including Refugio and El Capitán state beaches. The parks were closed during the clean-up, including during the typically busy Memorial Day weekend. The pipeline which caused the disaster is no longer in service.
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Refugio State Beach reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.0
128 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • IMHO, the best of the three beaches along the Gaviota coast (Refugio, El Capitan, and Gaviota). Ten dollars entry (you can visit all three beaches in one day with one pass) and ample parking right... 
    IMHO, the best of the three beaches along the Gaviota coast (Refugio, El Capitan, and Gaviota). Ten dollars entry (you can visit all three beaches in one day with one pass) and ample parking right...  more »
  • Great camping ground site and beach area. The surfers were riding the waves on the far west side of the beach. Reserved the campsite online no problems at all. You can camp on ground or RV... 
    Great camping ground site and beach area. The surfers were riding the waves on the far west side of the beach. Reserved the campsite online no problems at all. You can camp on ground or RV...  more »
Google
  • Nice day at the beach. You can camp here, on the main grounds not on the beach itself. There are restrooms, a huge grass play area with a swing set. Dogs are allowed on leash on the main grounds, but not allowed on the beach. Sand was soft and clean and lots of seaweed at tide lines. Rolling waves, great for kids. Felt peaceful.
  • We stayed in the Bouchard Group camp site. Great location on a bluff, uninterrupted view of the water. There were bathrooms and showers in the group site. Two water sprockets for cleaning. No outdoor sink but plenty of picnic benches. Nice beach with little to no current. Very nice site for group camping.

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