The small Santa Barbara Municipal Airport in Goleta, some 13km (8mi) west of downtown off Hwy 101, has scheduled flights to and from Los Angeles, San Francisco, Denver, Las Vegas, Phoenix and other US cities.
The Santa Barbara Airbus shuttles between Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) and Santa Barbara 14 times daily. The Amtrak depot is on lower State St, and has direct train and coach services to Los Angeles and San Diego via the Pacific Surfliner and Coast Starlight, which also stop in Carpinteria and Ventura.
Greyhound has up to four daily buses to Los Angeles and up to six to San Francisco. Vista runs several daily Coastal Express buses to Ventura. If arriving or leaving by car the quickest route is by Hwy 101, which runs right through Santa Barbara; for downtown Santa Barbara, take the Garden St or Cabrillo Blvd exits.
Buses operated by Santa Barbara Metropolitan Transit District travel all over Santa Barbara and its satellites, including Goleta and Montecito. The Downtown-Waterfront Shuttle bus runs every 10-15 mins along State St to Stearns Wharf. A second route travels from the zoo to the yacht harbor at 30min intervals. The biodiesel Santa Barbara Trolley makes a hop-on, hop-off 90-minute narrated one-way loop starting from Stearns Wharf; stops include the harborfront, maritime museum, zoo, natural-history museum, mission and county courthouse on State St. Lil' Toot water taxi is a great way to get to your destination whilst soaking up the waterfront. It provides an ecofriendly biodiesel-fueled ride between Stearns Wharf and the harbor.
Avis, Budget, Enterprise and Hertz rent-a-car services all have outlets in the Santa Barbara Airport main terminal. Downtown, keep an eye out for the smaller and sometimes cheaper local car rental companies.
Health and Safety
Earthquakes happen all the time but most are so tiny they are detectable only by sensitive seismological instruments. If you're caught in a serious shaker: stay indoors, get under a desk or table or stand in a doorway. Protect your head and stay clear of windows, mirrors or anything that might fall. If outdoors, get away from buildings, bridges and overpasses, trees and power lines. Prepare for aftershocks. Turn on the radio and listen for bulletins. Use the telephone only if absolutely necessary.
If you're out enjoying the Southern California beaches and you find yourself being carried off shore by a rip, the important thing is to just keep afloat. Don't panic or try to swim against the current, as this will quickly exhaust you and you may drown. Instead, try to swim parallel to the shoreline and once the current stops pulling you out, swim back to shore.