El Capitan Canyon: Best Glamping On The Santa Barbara Coast
Updated: Mar 16
Do you enjoy camping? This is our 4th year camping at El Capitan Canyon and it's never disappointed. We call it Glamping because it has all the resort style services with all the beauty of nature and adventure of camping. The campsite grounds and all of its surrounding areas are beautiful, clean and well kept. If this sounds like something you might enjoy, I encourage you to keep reading to learn more about this beautiful camp site.
We stayed in a Queen Creek Side cabin for the second time and it was perfect. We had a queen bed and Alexia stayed in a loft fit for 2 kiddos. The cabin comes with electricity, a mini fridge, microwave, coffee maker, kitchen sink with running water, and most importantly your own private restroom with shower. Here's a quick little video I took to show you inside the cabin.
Every cabin comes with your own personal outdoor table and a BBQ pit perfect for s'more making, which we did every night.
What better way to get out and enjoy nature then with a hike to the Llama farm. The hike is located right in the campground and is perfect for all ages. It starts with a bit of an incline but soon enough it evens out and is a quick hike to the Llamas. On a sunny day, there isn't much shade so make sure and wear sunblock and bring some water.
Once you arrive at the Llama farm that's where the real fun begins. Not only do you get to see Llamas but you also get to feed and pet sheep, goats and even a donkey. We even got to learn some of the animals names! This is one of Alexias favorite things to do when we go camping. We arrived to the farm at 10am and had the animals all to ourselves so definitely recommend you visit early.
El Capitan State Beach
Another advantage to this campsite is that the beach is within a 5 minute drive or 10 minute bike ride. We decided to ride our bikes but I must warn you the ride to the beach was easy because it was going downhill, the way back not so easy because it's mostly all uphill but definitely doable and a great workout. Once at the beach we even got to see Dolphins and a sea lion. This is our 3rd year spotting dolphins at this beach so if you decide to visit, keep your eyes peeled.
Here is a video we caught of the Dolphins!
Market On Campsite
One of the many luxuries of staying at this campsite is they have a market on site. Its not just any market but they have everything from clothes, essentials you might have forgotten, firewood, snacks, wine and they even have a restaurant inside. Yes they serve breakfast, lunch and dinner and the food is very tasty. You can also order meats which they can deliver to your cabin for your campsite BBQ.
Animals In Nature
Now don't get me wrong, just because this campsite gives you the glamping experience does not mean you don't get to experience wild life. During our 4 day stay beside interacting with sheep, goats, llamas and a donkey, we also got to see many other animals in the wild like: squirrels, gophers, skunks, raccoons, woodpeckers, and even a falcon. Not to mention the dolphins and the sea lion we saw at the beach. The skunk was by the creek and we were able to spot it from our campsite and the raccoon come over for a quick hello and was quickly scared away by our flashlight. Alexia is a huge animal lover so this was such a treat for her. Here are some pictures we were able to get of some of the other animals.
Hike outside of campsite
We decided to drive 30 minutes outside the campsite to enjoy another hike that caught our attention. We visited Skofield Park Rattlesnake Canyon wilderness area. Its a 4.4 mile out and back hike that takes you through some rugged terrain but has some beautiful sights and makes for a very exciting trail. We had to cross a creek, climb over some rock and at some points the path does get narrow and can be a little confusing but we managed. Definitely recommend it for a good workout! Also advice to stay on trail because off trail there is lots of poison oak around the area. We made it with an 8 year old and although it's labeled as a hard hike we really enjoyed it. Halfway down the trail we stopped to sit on a rock to enjoy a break, a small waterfall and a snack. You can follow this link for more reviews, pictures, and information on this hike https://www.alltrails.com/trail/us/california/rattlesnake-canyon--2
Other Special Events & Amenities
During this time (July 2020) several of their normal activities are not open or operating due to Covid-19. However, here are some pictures from the past to give you an idea.
Games like Jenga and cornhole at community sitting area
Here are some tips to keep in mind while planning your visit
Adult bike rentals are free but they do not provide bikes for kids so make sure and bring your own.
As mentioned above the beach is just a quick drive away so bring your swimwear and beach essentials
Make sure and bring comfortable closed toe shoes
July 2020 masks are required to enter the canyon market at all times
Lights and music out at 10pm
Reservations needed before arrival
Address: 11560 Calle Real, Santa Barbara CA 93117
Phone number: (866) 352-2729
For more information or to make your reservations follow this LINK
We have made El Capitan Canyon part of our families yearly tradition and encourage you to visit and come make your own special memories. There is so much to do and so much beauty to enjoy. I really hope you find all of this information helpful! I really enjoyed reliving all these memories while sharing all of this with you.
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Talk to you later!