If you’re really looking for an adventure, you can take the hike up to three pools off of the Tunnel road trail here in SB. A fair warning, this hike is not easy. There is a lot of rock hopping involved and one difficult spot that’s especially hard to climb. I know that I struggled particularly hard to make it up this trail. I was lucky to come out with just a few scrapes and bruises, although then again I’m not the most coordinated when it comes to hiking. Although it was hard, this trail is DEFINITELY worth it. Up there it’s so beautiful, and looks like a scene from a movie.
Jumping into the cool fresh water after you’ve been covered in sweat and your muscles have been burning is one of the best feelings there is. These pictures are from the single time I have taken the hike, over the summer in July. I would absolutely love to get up there at this time of year when the pools are even more filled (maybe not as we’re in the midst of a water crisis). I came up with 5 of my friends, and I recommend coming with a group that size or smaller. Once up there, we were able to sit and picnic, take photos, and enjoy the swim.
Not only is 3 pools one of the best places to go in Santa Barbara, but I’d say it is one of the best hikes in all of California. It’s not everyday you can spend time on the beach and swimming in gorgeous natural pools up in the mountains.