Nojoqui Falls – Solvang’s Hidden Oasis
Seclusion and peace in a busy world.
You may not know that right here in Santa Barbara County is a beautiful, out-of-the-way park with a breathtaking, seasonal waterfall.
Just a few miles south of Buellton, Nojoqui Falls flows over a steep, sandstone wall, covered in deep green moss and verdant ferns. If you go soon or after a rain, you’ll see this spectacular waterfall cascading more than 100 feet to a bubbling stream.
This is truly a hidden gem that must be explored. I’ve been to Nojoqui Falls County Park several times, and the beauty of this area hasn’t disappointed and it has never been crowded. It is a secluded, rarely visited, dog-friendly park.
From the trailhead to the waterfall is only 0.6 miles round trip and takes a half-hour, if you’re only stopping for a quick look. If you’re a nature lover like me, you may not want to leave for hours.
The falls are right off Highway 101, roughly 1½ miles east of the freeway. If you’re taking Highway 101 north from the South Coast, just past the Gaviota Tunnel you’ll see a sign saying Nojoqui County Park, where you will turn right onto Old Coast Highway at the top of the pass. Turn left on Alisal Road and you’ll run into the park.