Base History \ Arrival
Vandenberg Air Force Base (VAFB) is located on the central coast of California, near Lompoc and Santa Maria. Lompoc, 11 miles from base, is the closest town. Santa BarbaraCounty is considered a high cost area. The base encompasses over 98,000 acres, with 35 miles of pristine coastline stretching along the Pacific Ocean. It is truly a military installation in a national park setting. The zip code for the base is 93437. The base operator's number is 805-606-1110 or DSN 312-276-1110.
Vandenberg AFB is named in honor of the late General Hoyt S. Vandenberg, second Air Force Chief of Staff of the United States Air Force and chief architect of today's modern Air Force. In honor of his service to the nation, the aerospace base, formerly Cooke Air Force Base, was renamed Vandenberg AFB on October 4, 1958.
The mission of the 30th Space Wing is to defend the United States of America through exceptional launch, range, expeditionary and installation operations. The 30th Space Wing manages Department of Defense space and missile testing, and the placing of satellites into polar orbit from the West Coast, using expendable boosters. The 381 TRG, Air Education and Training Command, provides quality training to produce the finest space and missile operators and maintainers for our AF and our nation's defense.
There are 2,595 Air Force personnel assigned, 2,943 family members, 1,081 DoD civilians, 233 contractors and approximately 8,000 retirees.
Driving to the Installation from Santa Maria Airport
Exiting the airport, turn right onto Skyway Dr. Take Skyway Dr to Hwy 135, also called South Broadway, and turn right. Take Hwy 135 until it merges into Hwy 1 and follow the signs to Vandenberg AFB.
Driving to the Installation from Santa Barbara Airport
Exiting the airport head east onto Fowler Rd, and follow the signs to Hwy 101 Northbound. Turn onto Hwy 246 West towards Lompoc (about 17 miles). Just before reaching Lompoc, take the right turn onto Purisima Road (sign says Purisima Road and Vandenberg Village). Purisima Road will merge with Hwy 1 (just north of town). Follow Hwy 1 North past Vandenberg Village for about 5 miles to the VAFB Santa Maria Gate--main gate. Don't take any other turn-offs, Hwy 1 will take you to the gate.
Central Coast Shuttle provides services to and from Santa Maria, Buellton, Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara Airport and Ventura to Los Angeles International Airport. VisitCentral Coast Shuttle and CCLAX or call 1-800-470-8818.
Arriving from the North
Travel 101 South to the Clark St exit;(ignore the exit onto Betteravia) proceed West to Hwy 135 which merges onto Hwy 1 southbound and follow the signs to Vandenberg AFB.
Arriving from the South
Take Hwy 101 North to Buellton. Turn onto Hwy 246 West towards Lompoc (about 17 miles). Just before reaching Lompoc, take the right turn onto Purisima Road (sign says Purisima Road and Vandenberg Village). Purisima Road will merge with Hwy 1 (just north of town). Follow Hwy 1 North past Vandenberg Village for about 5 miles to the VAFB Santa Maria Gate--main gate. Don't take any other turn-offs, Hwy 1 will take you to the gate.
Alternate Route for Arriving from the South
Travel Hwy 101 until you get to Hwy 1 north turn off (right after the tunnel). Follow Hwy 1 for approximately 21 miles to Lompoc (this is a winding 2 and 4 lane road). Follow Hwy 1 road signs through Lompoc (H Street) to Vandenberg AFB.
For statewide highway traffic conditions, try Caltrans Highway information toll-free voice activated phone service, 800-427-7623 (800-427-ROAD). This service is available free, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. You'll get up-to-the-minute road conditions for any California State highway. The information covers incidents that cause significant traffic delays, but not limited to, weather restrictions; highway closures; 1-way traffic controls; lane closures; construction and maintenance project advisories and emergencies. The service does NOT include normal commute traffic, ramp closures and traffic flow conditions.