As fine art museums go, few in California are up to the standards of the Santa Barbara Museum of Art free admission every Thursday. The collection features original works by artists from all over Asia, Europe, and the Americas, all housed in small, meticulously kept galleries.
We happened across this cozy little chocolate shop on West Gutierrez Street and went back for more the very next day. Connect with Us. I love the variety of restaurants they offer and yes, window shop. Fascinating hands-on indoor and outdoor exhibits on three floors are grouped into themes such as Light, Speed, Interactive Media, Fantastic Forces, and the Sky Garden. This is where I share my discoveries with you, along with occasional deep thoughts, pop culture tangents and a sprinkling of snark.
Or simply have a picnic in the adjacent Sunken Garden, which hosts free outdoor movie screenings every Friday during the summer. Historic Stearns Wharf is bordered by laid-back West Beach , which is fronted by rows of towering palm trees and makes a convenient access point to the harbor for sailing tours and kayak rentals.
Slightly east of downtown, secluded Butterfly Beach offers a quieter, more sheltered experience — ideal for anyone looking to get away from crowds. Traveling with your pooch?
More than 90, attendees show up for over films and symposiums, making it one of the leading film festivals in the country. In an effort to appease as many oenophiles as possible, Santa Barbara stages not one but two major wine festivals each year.
Two weeks later, the California Wine Festival opens it up with even more vendors, gourmet restaurants, and wineries representing the entire state. Mediterranean-like weather, beautiful architecture and vibrant nightlife help make Santa Barbara a hugely popular place to visit all year round. Nestled in southern California between the ocean and the foothills of the Santa Ynez Mountains, it is the ideal retreat from the big-city life of nearby Los Angeles.
A university town, it is also bursting with youthful energy, and has a distinctively European feel.
No surprise, given it was once European, having been home to Spanish settlers some four centuries ago. With its long stretch of coastline and almost year round blue skies, it should come as no surprise that surfing is a popular pastime in Santa Barbara.
After enjoying the waves, visitors can also learn about the history of surfing at the Santa Barbara Surfing Museum. Surfing is believed to date back to before B. C and the museum is designed to take visitors through this long and illustrious history.
A must-visit for art lovers in Santa Barbara, the Marcia Burtt Gallery features contemporary landscape paintings by a number of noted American artists. Exhibitions at the gallery change frequently and local Santa Barbara vistas are a permanent feature on the wall.
Larger on the inside than it looks from the street, the airy skylit gallery opens through glass doors onto a deck bordered with bougainvillea and a garden overhung by grapevines. The gallery is located in SoCo, a unique downtown Santa Barbara neighborhood two blocks from the freeway. See 10 Experiences. Santa Barbara Zoo. See 2 Experiences. Old Mission Santa Barbara. See 14 Experiences.
Cold Spring Tavern. Shoreline Park. Santa Barbara Harbor. See 9 Experiences.
Book your tickets online for the top things to do in Santa Barbara, California on TripAdvisor: See We have reviews of the best places to see in Santa Barbara. See 10 Experiences .. (28)Museums (26)Transportation (15) Concerts & Shows (13)Classes & Workshops (13)Fun & Games (9)Traveler Resources (5). Many of Santa Barbara's top tourist attractions lie within close proximity of each other, . For more than a century, this excellent museum has featured fascinating .
Cabrillo Bike Path. Stearns Wharf. See 4 Experiences. State Street Underpass.
See 1 Experience. Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History.
Santa Barbara Botanic Garden. Arroyo Burro County Beach Park.
Santa Barbara Maritime Museum. Chaucer's Bookstore.
Santa Barbara Scenic Drive. Casa del Herrero. Moreton Bay Fig Tree. Reagan Ranch Center. Lake Cachuma.