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The shrubby, duney, jungled wild space between Emma Wood State Park, Ventura River’s estuary, the freeway, and the ocean is etched with footpaths. There are two jumping off points from…

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This verdant gorge with a lake at its heart and wooded slopes around its perimeter is bursting with blooms, rock gardens and footbridges in all the spaces between. Leonard Buck,…

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A beguiling marriage of the natural and the unnatural, of hummingbird baths and peacock paths and sculpted caves under waterfalls – this secret garden rewards eager feet and keen eyes.…

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How privileged we all are, with our open invitation to step into this timeless, seemingly boundless, no-expense-spared, aristocratic park at our leisure (Tuesday through Saturday, 8:30am to 6pm). From the…

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Dense woods, open meadows, bike paths, horse riding trails, hawks, herons, lake views, water lilies, fishing nooks, level pathways, steep plummets, rhododendron groves, wistful benches…. few places let you choose…

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A congregation of wonderlands connected by stone steps and zigging pathways is tucked into one of Montecito’s verdant canyons. There are rose-lined lawns, colonades draped in vines, a picnic meadow…

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A fire road forges the main path through Harmon Canyon, alongside and across the creek to a lookout, ostensibly 3.5 miles in – and up. But we got happily distracted…

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Wedged amidst Ventura’s foothills, Arroyo Verde Park is the launch pad for trails of various lengths and climbs, though a lovely view with fragrant, pretty flora is guaranteed. Trails start…

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From the same parking lot, you can hover high above the ocean with the paragliders where trains whiz past, or you can crouch close to a sea anemone and watch…

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This enchanting antique estate and garden are in contention for the park with the world’s best view. You’re confronted with the view the moment you park – spanning a full…

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Rocky, oaky nooks abound in the wonderful trail scramble at the back of the park along Mission Creek and behind the picnic sites and playground. Minimal in acreage, but with…

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Poised atop a seaside cliff, this place would be marvelous even without the bocci court, ping pong tables, grape trellises, nice playground, clean toilets, and dog washing kiosk (not kidding).…

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If the great meadow were the entirety of this preserve, it would be a phenomenal destination. But instead, that marvelous sloping pollinator extravaganza/ sledding paradise presides over: an allee of…

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Though technically you could footpath along the pipeline, paralleling the train tracks – you don’t even have to leave the parking area to take in the full wonder of this…

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Deer, wild turkeys, foxes, eagles…. they’ll be startled by you in this tranquil, precious collection of trees and pathways. Several building relics and countless intriguing tree species stand tribute to…

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