Drive all the way up on the mountains and get a magnificent view over Santa Barbara and Goleta.
One of the most popular places is Lizard rock, aka Lizard’s Mouth. This place is only a 1/4 mile hike from where you will park the car.
To get to the trailhead: From The 101 freeway west of downtown Santa Barbara, exit on the 154 headed north. The road climbs up the mountain into Los Padres National Forest. After 7 miles, turn left onto West Camino Cielo (if you reach the East Camino Cielo or the crest of the ridge, you have gone to far). Off the 154, West Camino Cielo makes an immediate right before winding up to the top of the ridge. Take this road for 3.5 miles and enjoy the views over Santa Barbara. The trailhead is on the left side of the road a few hundred feet before the Winchester Canyon Gun Club. When you reach the gun club or the point where the road becomes unpaved, turn around and backtrack to the roadside parking near the trailhead. A wooden board next to a tree (and a brown pipe on the ground) mark the start of the trail to Lizard’s Mouth.
More info and pictures on http://www.examiner.com/article/hiking-to-lizard-s-mouth-santa-barbara
© photo: Seth Smigelski