Goleta is a city located in southern Santa Barbara County, California, USA. It was incorporated as a new city in 2002, after a long time as being the largest unincorporated, populated area in the county. As of the 2000 census, the CDP had a total population of 55,204, however, a significant portion of the census territory of 2000 did not incorporate into the new city. The Census Bureau's official estimate as of July 1, 2006 was 29,182 inhabitants within city limits. It is known for being close to the University of California, Santa Barbara campus, although the CDP of Isla Vista is closer.