El Capitan State Beach offers day use and overnight camping. The beach is located 30 minutes north of Santa Barbara. Camping reservations can be made six months in advance.
Most Campsites offer lots of shady areas. Oak and sycamore trees are throughout the park. Several campsites offer beautiful views from cliff-top locations.
The beach at El Capitan is mostly sand with tide pools at the north and south ends. Popular activities include swimming, fishing, surfing, picnicking, and camping. A stairway provides access from the bluffs to the beach area. A bike trail connects the park with Refugio State Beach, 2.5 miles away.
Beach, bluff, and bike trails link El Capitan and Refugio state beaches. Depending on the tide, you can usually travel up-coast along El Capitan Beach as far as Coral Canyon Beach. Then you can join the bluff trails or the bike path, which is also open to hikers, for the balance of the trip to Refugio Beach.
El Capitan Beach is perfect for families looking for a beach camping adventure or to escape from the city for the day. Sandy beach, rocky tidepools, and sycamore stands and oaks along El Capitan Creek. It’s a perfect setting for swimming, fishing, surfing, picnicking, and camping. A stairway provides access from the bluffs to the beach area.
El Capitan State Beach Beach Camping
The campground has 133 campsites. 118 standard, 9 RV only, 3 group standard, and 3 group tent. Even though they are relatively close together, most of the campsites have plenty of trees and offer some privacy. The most sought-after sites are near the beach are 99 – 109, 85 -82, and 29 – 44. Camps at the back of the park will get freeway noise plus the occasional sound of a train.
Dogs must be kept on a leash at all times. Quiet hours are from 10 pm to 6 am. Check-out time is noon. Each campsite can have up to eight people. All the camps have fire pits and tables. Campground Reservations should be made in advance for weekends and holidays. (up to 6 months in advance)
On the other side of Highway 101 is another option for camping, El Capitan Canyon Resort. Glamping (Glamorous Camping) is offered at the resort and RV camping.
El Capitan State Beach is located on Highway 101, 24 miles northwest of Santa Barbara. El Capitan State Beach10 Refugio Beach Rd. • Goleta, California.