(includes Buellton, Goleta, Guadalupe, Los Olivos, Montecito, Ojai, Santa Maria, Santa Ynez & Solvang)
BAKERIES, COFFEE, ICE CREAM, JUICE & TEA
●McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams – 728 State Street; 805-324-4402; mcconnells.com; try eureka lemon & marionberries flavor.
BARS & NIGHTCLUBS
●Eos Lounge – 500 Anacapa Street (Santa Barbara); 805-564-2410; eos-lounge.com; tree-shaded patio that looks like Mykonos but on Pacific Ocean.
●Hungry Cat – 1344 Chapala Street (Santa Barbara); 805-884-4701; thehungrycat.com; raw bar with good oysters.
●JC’s Bar at Red Barn – 3539 Sagunto Street (Santa Ynez); 805-688-4142; brothersredbarn.com; wood slab from felled pine tree from Figueroa Mountain does duty as bar top; local ranchers have burned their brands into bar beams.
●Municipal Winemakers – 22 Anacapa Street (Santa Barbara); 805-931-6864; municipalwinemakers.com; in garage-like space with eclectic door; old athletic trophies and chandelier made of glass bottles.
●Tonic – 634 State Street (Santa Barbara); 805-897-1800; tonicsb.com; airy dance club.
●Wildcat Lounge – 15 West Ortega Street (Santa Barbara); 805-962-7970; wildcatlounge.com; retro bar with red-vinyl banquettes; referenced in Katy Perry song This Is How We Do.
●Arroyo Burro Beach – 2981 Cliff Drive (Santa Barbara); 805-687-3714; countyofsb.org; locals call it Hendry’s Beach; jog or stroll sandy shore, ride waves, surf fish, or watch for whales; known for sandy beaches, this park also offers cool, grassy area.
●Butterfly Beach – Butterfly Lane (Santa Barbara, across from Four Seasons Biltmore); 805-568-2465; santabarbaraca.com; areas finest.
●East Beach – 1400 Cabrillo Boulevard (Santa Barbara); 805-564-5418; santabarbaraca.gov; picnic facilities; over dozen volleyball courts; full service restaurant (East Beach Grill).
●Alisal Guest Ranch & Resort – 150 Alisal Road; 805-688-6042 th 800-425-4725; alisal.com; premier West Coast dude ranch.
●Bacara Resort – 8301 Hollister Avenue (Goleta); 805-968-0100 or 877-422-4245; bacararesort.com.
●Canary Hotel – 31 West Carrillo Street (Santa Barbara); 805-884-0300 or 877-468-3513; canarysantabarbara.com; four stars.
●El Encanto – 800 Alvarado Place; 805-845-5800 or 800-237-1236; elencanto.com; recently renovated; 1910s hotel on 7 acres just outside Santa Barbara; 92 California-style bungalows.
●Inn of Spanish Garden – 915 Garden Street (Santa Barbara); 805-564-4700 or 866-564-4700; spanishgardeninn.com.
●Four Seasons Biltmore – 1260 Channel Drive (Santa Barbara); 805-969-2261 or 800-819-5053; fourseasons.com.
●Montecito Inn – 1295 Coast Village Road (Santa Barbara); 805-969-7854 or 800-843-2017; montecitoinn.com.
●Motel 6 – 443 Corona Del Mar; 805-564-1392 or 800-466-8356; motel6.com; America’s 1st Motel 6; cheerful, immaculate; block from beach.
●Ojai Valley Inn & Spa – 905 Country Club Road (Ojai); 805-646-111 or 800-422-6524; ojairesort.com; built in 1923 as US army camp; Spanish Colonial style inn.
●Paradise Retreats – 16 East Arrellaga Street (Santa Barbara); 805-275-1851; paradiseretreats.com; for high-end house & villa rentals.
●Fess Parker Wine Country Inn & Spa – 2860 Grand Avenue (Los Olivos); 805-688-7788; fessparkerinn.com; great base for local cycling; 5 epic rides within pedaling distance, especially Figueroa Mountain Road.
●Presidio Motel – 1620 State Street; 805-963-1355; thepresidiomotel.com; 1950s motor inn with 16 simple, updated rooms decorated by local art students.
●San Ysidro Ranch – 900 San Ysidro Lane (Santa Barbara); 805-565-1700 or 800-368-6788; sanysidroranch.com; rosewood hotel.
●Simpson House Inn – 121 East Arrellaga Street (Santa Barbara); 805-963-7067 or 800-676-1280; simpsonhouseinn.com; 5 star bed and breakfast on 5 acres English gardens.
●Brophy Brothers Restaurant & Clam Bar – 119 Harbor Way (Santa Barbara); 803-966-4418; brophybros.com; very fresh food; overlooks harbor; excellent clam chowder and grilled swordfish.
●Brothers Restaurant at Red Barn – 3539 Sagunto Street (Santa Ynez); 805-688-4142; brothersredbarn.com; menu includes kabocha squash soup, horseradish-crusted Irish salmon with whole grain mustard sauce, grilled Iowa pork rib chop with applesauce and honey butter, & slow-roasted prime rib; inside, raised ceiling and restored wood beams, open display kitchen & glassed-in wine room; 2 wood-burning fireplaces add warmth to space.
●C’est Cheese – 825 Santa Barbara Street (Santa Barbara); 805-965-0318; cestcheese.com; small cheese and specialty shop; try truffled grilled-cheese sandwich.
●East Beach Grill – 1118 East Cabrillo Boulevard (Santa Barbara); 805-965-8805; greasy but bright breakfast institution popular with cyclists, skaters, and surfers; try banana wheat germ pancakes.
●Far Western Tavern – 899 Guadalupe Street (Guadalupe); 805-343-2211; farwesterntavern.com; “Santa Maria-style” barbecue.
●Geoffrey’s Malibu – 27400 Pacific Coast Highway; 310-457-1519; geoffreysmalibu.com; romantic beachside setting with sweeping, ocean views; legendary, playing host to Marilyn Monroe, JFK & Old Hollywood glitterati; Richard Neutra-designed dining room; seafood-centric fare.
●Hitching Post II – 406 East Highway 246 (Buellton); 805-688-0676; hitchingpost2.com; outstanding “Santa Maria-style” barbecue; best regional example.
●Jeannine’s – 3607 State Street (Santa Barbara); 805-687-8701; jeannines.com; for breakfast; cozy, with marble-topped tables and tempting pastries; try California omelet or banana French toast.
●Julienne – 138 East Canon Perdido (Santa Barbara); 805-845-6488; restaurantjulienne.com; inviting, warm bistro with seasonal menu and local meats, produce, and seafood.
●Lilly’s – 310 Chapala Street (Santa Barbara); 805-966-9180; tiny taco joint in town center run by Sepulveda family.
●Lucky’s – 1279 Coast Village Road (Montecito); 805-565-7540; luckys-steakhouse.com; 5-star, insider restaurant.
●Metropulos Fine Foods Merchant – 216 East Yanonali Street; 805-899-2300; www.metrofinefoods.com; for lunches (sandwiches, etc.).
●On Alley – 117 Harbor Way; 805-962-6315; onthealley.com; great fish tacos.
●Palapa – 4123 State Street (Santa Barbara); 805-683-3074; palapa.biz; taco joint; try fresh seafood tacos on cheery patio just north of downtown.
●Shaw’s Steakhouse Tavern – 714 South Broadway (Santa Maria); 805-925-5862; “Santa Maria-style” barbecue.
●Stonehouse – 900 San Ysidro Lane (Santa Barbara, at San Ysidro Ranch); 805-565-1700; sanysidroranch.com/dine1.cfm; open fire in restaurant; take post-dinner stroll around terraced gardens.
●La Super Rica Taqueria – 622 North Milpas Street (Santa Barbara); 805-963-4940; Julia Child’s favorite taco joint; try pork and cheese and/or spicy ground beans.
●Taqueria La Colmena – 217 North Milpas Street (Santa Barbara); 805-845-6970; inexpensive, no-frills spot with handmade tortillas; try lomito or cheesy raja tacos.
●Angel – 1221 Coast Village Road (Montecito); 805-565-1599; wendyfoster.com; casual sportswear.
●Blue Owl – 425 State Street (Santa Barbara); 805-705-0991; theblueowlsantabarbara.com; open late only (11:30 p.m. to 2:30 a.m.); operates out of Zen Yai; try tri-tip sandwich with oyster-chili mayo or flaky banana roti.
●C’est Cheese – 825 Santa Barbara Street (Santa Barbara); 805-965-0318; cestcheese.com; small cheese and specialty shop.
●Deep Sea Tasting Room – 217 Stearns Wharf (Santa Barbara); 805-618-1185; deepseatastingroom.com; on main pier in stylish 2nd floor space with views over beach, city, and mountains.
●Dressed – 1253 Coast Village Road (Montecito); 805-565-1253; dressedonline.com; Teri Hatcher and Britney Spears shop here.
●Kunin Wines – 28 Anacapa Street (Santa Barbara); 805-963-9633; kuninwines.com; inside sunny cottage 1 block from beach.
●Lewis & Clark – 1116 State Street (Santa Barbara); 805-962-6034; lewisandclarkltd.com; funky curios, especially from central America.
●Randall House Rare Books – 835 Laguna Street (Santa Barbara); 805-963-1909; randallhouserarebooks.com.
●Santa Barbara Winery – 202 Anacapa Street (Santa Barbara); 805-963-3633; sbwinery.com; pinot noir pioneer and city’s oldest winery.
●Supply Room – 1620 State Street (Santa Barbara, at Presidio Motel); 805-963-1355; shopsupplyroom.com; tiny shop for accessories, clothing, and jewelry.
●Warbler Records & Goods – 131 East De La Guerra Street (Santa Barbara); 805-845-5862; warblerrecords.com; new and vintage music, including vinyl.
●Condor Express – 301 West Cabrillo Boulevard (Santa Barbara); 805-882-0088; condorcruises.com; from December-February, 30K gray whales migrate from Alaska to Baja California, through 5-mile gap among Channel Islands, 20 or so miles off coast; take Condor Express (catamaran) for daily whale-watching tours; also see porpoises and sea lions, even occasional killer whale.
●Urban Wine Trail – Santa Barbara; urbanwinetrailsb.com; most within walking distance of downtown.
SIGHTS & SITES
●Bridlewood Estate Winery – 3555 Roblar Avenue (Santa Ynez); 805-688-9000 or 800 467-4100; BridlewoodWinery.com; lushly landscaped, landmark Mission-style wine estate; winery committed to creating world-class Syrah; inviting destination to enjoy wine, relax, picnic, and savor landscape.
●Cabrillo Pavilion Bathhouse – 1119 East Cabrillo Boulevard; 805-897-2680; santabarbaraca.gov; built in 1927; lockers, showers, volleyball rental, and weight room.
●Andree Clark Bird Refuge – 1407 East Cabrillo Boulevard (Santa Barbara, at or near Bellosguardo Estate); 805-564-5418; peaceful lagoon and gardens north of East Beach; bike trails and footpaths, punctuated by signs identifying migratory and native birds.
●Coast Village Road – Montecito; main shopping drag.
●Cold Spring Trail – Mountain Drive (Santa Barbara); santabarbara.com/activities/hikes/cold_spring_loop; begins gently in shade by creek that almost always has water; box hidden somewhere at summit for logging triumphant summit; steady, uphill slog; worth it for ocean views.
●Douglas Family Preserve – Medcliff Road & Selrose Lane (above Arroyo Beach); santabarbaraca.gov; dozens of hiking trails.
●Funk Zone – Santa Barbara; wacky neighborhood with street poles wrapped with colorful knitted sleeves and street art murals enliven industrial buildings.
●Ganna Walska Lotusland – 695 Ashley Road (Santa Barbara); lotusland.org; 805-969-9990; unique 37-acre estate and botanic garden situated in Montecito foothills, east of Santa Barbara; scheduled tours.
●Karpeles Manuscript Library & Museum – 21 West Anapamu Street (Santa Barbara); 805-962-5322; rain.org/-karpeles; among world’s largest private manuscript collections; Walt Disney’s original will, Galileo letter, Lincoln’s 2nd Emancipation Proclamation (13th Amendment).
●Lafond Winery & Vineyards – 6855 Santa Rosa Road (Buellton); 805-688-7921; lafondwinery.com; produces Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Syrah (1st planted in 1971, county vineyard pioneers; visit beautiful picnic grounds overlooking vineyard and Santa Rita Hills.
●Mission Santa Barbara – 2201 Laguna Street (Santa Barbara); 805-682-4713; sbmission.org; 1786 landmark with ocher-colored columns and known as “Queen” of 21 original Spanish missions built along California coastline; stroll Sacred Gardens; ask docent to see terra-cotta St. Barbara sculpture (watching over Jesus and Mary); 1522 masterpiece discovered 3 years ago in storage room; in alcove in garden’s private portico.
●Santa Barbara Botanic Garden – 1212 Mission Canyon Road (Santa Barbara); 805-682-4726; sbbg.org.
●Santa Barbara Museum of Art – 1130 State Street (Santa Barbara); 805-963-4364; sbmuseart.org; small but engaging.
●State Street – Santa Barbara; main shopping drag.
●West Wind Drive-In – 907 South Kellogg Avenue (Goleta); 805-964-9050; westwinddriveins.com; 1960s era classic drive-in, recently reopened.
●Wheel Fun Rentals – 23 East Cabrillo Boulevard (Santa Barbara); 805-966-2282; wheelfunrentals.com; bicycle rentals.