Hotels in Goleta, California

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Goleta Hotels

Part of California's 'Riviera of the West,' and a playground for the rich and famous, a stay in Goleta grants you a VIP pass to explore this wonderful state's greatest treasures. While the endless miles of unspoiled beaches are undoubtedly the main draw here, don't underestimate the appeal of Santa Ynez Valley's wineries, Los Angeles' laid-back glitz, and Los Padres National Forest's mountainous hikes. With all this on your doorstep, it won't take long for you to fall head over heels in love with the relaxed way of life offered by this ocean-front city.

Things to see

Don't let the name put you off – Rattlesnake Canyon Trail is ideal for a quick escape from the city. You can't help but reconnect with nature, as you breathe in the smell of fresh pine needles, hear mini waterfalls gushing, and enjoy the cool shade offered by tall redwood trees. After returning to the city, pay Barbara Shores County Park a visit, where you'll see what seems like a coating of odd orange leaves covering the eucalyptus trees. Take a closer look, however, and you'll realize it's actually the delicate amber wings of thousands of monarch butterflies - which migrate to Goleta Butterfly Grove each winter. A walk through the grove also reveals beautiful views of the coast - and if that whets your appetite, you have to head out to the peaceful serenity of Refugio State Park and Beach. Light up a barbeque on the soft sand, take a kayak out onto the frothing white waves, or enjoy long hikes along quiet stretches of scenic beach - stopping occasionally to watch dolphins playfully frolicking out at sea.

Hotels in Goleta

Wake to the sound of the sea stirring, and sunlight streaming in through your bedroom's wide windows, at one of Goleta's 5-star hotels. Make the most of the views of ragged cliffs, crumbling into the rough ocean, by putting your feet up and enjoying breakfast on your large, private balcony. Or, feel the tension being released from your shoulders, as you're given an outdoor massage, while the sun gently warms your back. Cheaper hotels in Goleta often offer large outdoor swimming pools - where you can snooze while floating on inflatable lilos – along with free WiFi in the public areas.

Where to stay

Staying in downtown Goleta means you'll be surrounded by suave shopping outlets, and authentic Mexican restaurants, serving spicy enchiladas. In the evenings, enjoy sunset strolls along Goleta County Beach, watching as the sun sinks into the waves - tinting the wispy clouds pink. The city of Santa Barbara is next door, and you and the kids can discover your wild sides at Santa Barbara Zoo - where striped tigers will eye you up and down, penguins will waddle curiously towards you, and giraffes will lick food from your hands with their rough tongues. Staying at a Santa Barbara hotel also puts you close to Shoreline Park, where you can lie back and watch as huge cruise liners disappear into the blue horizon.

How to get to Goleta

It may be called Santa Barbara Municipal Airport, but it's actually located in the center of Goleta, which makes travel to the city incredibly simple. If you're coming from further away, then the busy international hub of Los Angles' LAX airport is less than 2 hours' drive away from the city. Or, keep your feet on the ground and take the scenic Pacific Surfliner train up here. The Amtrak service skirts the ocean along California, calling at downtown Goleta's railway station - as well as San Diego and Los Angeles.

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