We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.
Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
Get directions
Address: 5596 Calle Ocho, Carpinteria, CA

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 24 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 10
  • 7
    Very good
  • 5
  • 1
  • 1
Nice secluded beach despite the Tar . . .

this is a nice secluded beach. saw a number of people there with their dogs. there is no parking .do not park in the lot adjacent to the bluffs as that is for those working on the... read more

Reviewed 16 April 2017
Add Photo Write a Review

24 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Showing 24: English reviews
Level Contributor
228 reviews
94 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
Reviewed 16 April 2017

this is a nice secluded beach. saw a number of people there with their dogs. there is no parking .do not park in the lot adjacent to the bluffs as that is for those working on the pier there. the beach is nice. park elsewhere and take a hike down and enjoy the day.

Thank marktS5189DV
Venice, FL
Level Contributor
318 reviews
103 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 193 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 November 2016

I think the amount of tar visible may vary, or else we just didn't explore as much as some other reviewers. My husband of course had to stick his finger in it and then was surprised it was hard to get it off. Duh. It certainly doesn't qualify as "pretty" but it is pretty unique.

Thank Sharon Z
Shelby Township, Michigan
Level Contributor
25 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 21 October 2016

We drove down Dump Rd and ended up at a bridge out to an oil rig. We were sent away by security. We drove and found the entrance to the state park. Here they directed over to parking area for the tar pit amphitheater which is a bunch of logs in a circle with a paved path to them. We... More 

Thank danamc65
Johnstown, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
49 reviews
36 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 July 2016

I've never been to La Brea, but I've that it actually has pits full of tar. Carpinteria isn't quite like that. Instead of massive lakes, it's dried tar rocks, occasional tar springs, and occasional streams of tar you find here. They're nothing mind-blowing, but the tar still is interesting and the area is scenic, filled with rabbits and the occasional... More 

Thank Mr_Fugidoo
Level Contributor
128 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 June 2016

Wife and I visited here during our stay in the area. The city of Carpinteria is very nice, has a beautiful downtown area. Wish we could have been here for the Farmer's Market. Tar Pits Park was a nive place to visit.

Thank doctall41
Goleta, California
Level Contributor
309 reviews
103 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 84 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 January 2016 via mobile

Walked through the park this morning, lots of area is roped off with signs indicating Off Limits. There are a few places where you can see the hardened tar, but mostly this area is just st a walkway to another destination.

Thank Cathy M
Fontana, California
Level Contributor
27 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 June 2015

The closest parking is in the Carpinteria State Beach, with $10 parking fees for cars. You will walk a little ways along a beach trail before you get to Tar Pits Park. The views are beautiful, but if you're coming to see lots of oozing tar you will be a bit disappointed. My kids and I only spent a few... More 

1 Thank Suzanna H
Orlando, Florida
Level Contributor
2,354 reviews
1,353 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2,645 helpful votes
Reviewed 8 June 2015

We stopped there for a few minutes last week as we had heard some mix reviews about this place and wanted to experience it ourselves. The park is pretty clean for the most part and has a few live entertainers as well as a huge tar pit! That thing smells a little bad and bubbles come up to the surface... More 

1 Thank Steve R
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
221 reviews
162 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 107 helpful votes
Reviewed 14 April 2015

We wanted to park our car at Tar Pits Park as it is shown on the map -- both here in TripAdvisor and in Google Maps. We intended to walk the Carpinteria Bluffs Trail, which passes right by the parking lot. However, as soon as we pulled into a space, a uniformed security guard said that if we weren't working... More 

4 Thank Bob T
Level Contributor
230 reviews
77 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 105 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 March 2015 via mobile

I found the easiest way to see the tar pits is to walk down Dump Rd to the rail tracks and take the path to the right immediately after the tracks. Walk along the cliffs and you'll come across a gully which gives easy access to the beach. Very worth while examining and poking the tar. Be careful of your... More 

5 Thank jsimmill

Been to Tar Pits Park? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Questions & Answers

Questions? Get answers from Tar Pits Park staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Will you pick up and drop off at my hotel?
  • I have a family of 7. Can your tour accommodate all of us together?
  • How should I dress for this tour?