discover your own backyard
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The Neal Taylor Nature Center is a hands-on discovery center focused on the natural environment, ecosystems, and cultural heritage of Cachuma Lake, the upper Santa Ynez River and San Rafael Mountain watershed.
The Nature Center offers museum-style exhibits and a whole lot more! Come watch local birds feed at the bird feeders through a one-way mirror, watch our trout eggs grow and hatch, meet Bruno our Black Bear, measure your "wingspan" against local birds of prey, and put on your own puppet show with our wild animal and bird puppets. But wait, there is so much more for YOU to discover at the Nature Center! Just remember, please touch!
The Nature Center offers many outdoor activities throughout the year, including the Saving Wildlife program, Kids Fishing Workshops, Adult Fishing Workshops and the annual Trout Derby in April, and in partnership with the Park Department, Creepy Creatures and Kids Learn Birds.
Reconnecting children with nature encourages them to act on their natural curiosity, stimulates their limitless imaginations, and engages them about their responsibility to protect and preserve the natural environment.
The Nature Center is free* and open year-round to visitors of all ages. It is a non-profit located within the beautiful Cachuma Lake Recreation Area on Highway 154 between Santa Barbara and Santa Ynez.
Come and explore
*There is a $10 per vehicle entrance fee to Cachuma Lake Recreation Area.