We are all owners of our remarkable public lands. Enjoying them is one of the greatest joys of living in our local communities and our state, or visiting here.
Our public lands provide tremendous opportunities to explore our natural heritage, our history and ourselves. As importantly, they are places to have fun, get exercise, engage with others, relax, find peace, find excitement, reflect, play and also connect with our amazing environment.
This website is a starting point to discovering public lands within 300 miles of the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB).
I am fortunate to teach the “America’s Public Lands – Law and Policy” class at UCSB. Before taking my class, many of my wonderful students had only been to a few public land areas. In part, this is because they did not know what was available and where to go. Also, newcomers to the area, visitors, and even people who have lived here for a while have often asked me, “What public lands do you recommend?” This inspired me to create a Great Public Lands Destination website.
All of the public land areas on this website are, as noted above, within 300 miles of UCSB, with an emphasis on closer locations. While 50 destinations are featured, I did “sneak in” many other wonderful places to visit at the end of some of the destination pages under the sub-section entitled: “Nearby Public Lands Worth Visiting.”
This website is designed to serve as the identification and introduction points for public land adventures. Once a place of interest is found, each described destination has links that provide a lot more detailed information about the location, including directions on how to get there, maps (where available), and more.
On this website, there is a mix of every category of public land: national, state, county and city, as well as every type: national parks, state parks, county parks, city parks, open spaces, national forests, national monuments and more. My goal is to present a highlighted cross section of the amazing gifts our public lands have to offer to everyone, of every age, now and hopefully forever.