Three Days in Santa Barbara
Food & Wine
Santa Barbara is a little slice of heaven, you can go from paddle boarding and lounging on rustic beaches to hiking and mountain biking in Los Padres National Forest, to wine tasting downtown all in one day. The best part is you can get everywhere in 20 minutes or less!
The Fora Difference
Book with Meagan to access exclusive perks and experiences on your trip.
Free upgrades, spa credits and more—we got you
Customized travel planning for your style
Expert advice from people who’ve actually been there
Where to stay
Drift Santa Barbara
Minimal, modern and organic hotel on the coast offers guests a laidback Santa Barbara escape.
Palihouse Santa Barbara
In the historic Presidio neighborhood, this charming retreat has just 24 rooms set around a leafy courtyard.
Upgrade & extended check-in/out whenever possible.
Unlock perks by contacting Meagan to book your trip.
Day 1: Arrive in sunny Santa Barbara
Check into the Drift Hotel, a new boutique hotel in the middle of downtown with a moody, coastal vibe. Start your weekend with exploring State Street and stroll down to the end of Santa Barbara Wharf for a casual lunch at Santa Barbara Shellfish Co. Enjoy your fresh seafood on a picnic table surrounded by views of the harbor and ocean.
Head back towards town and a bit down the wharf you'll find Deep Sea Winery, take a seat and have a tasting while you take in the golden afternoon glow of the mountains surrounding downtown Santa Barbara, this will be the best view you get all weekend! To enjoy more of the sunny afternoon, take a stroll along the beach path before heading to dinner at the tucked-away, Apertivo. An Italian restaurant with a minimal, rotating menu, serving fresh pasta and local ingredients. Enjoy their creative spritzes and delicious Italian wines, it's one of our personal favorites in town!
Day 2: Explore by bike!
When you wake up, head to e-bikery and rent some electric bikes for the day. Cruise down to Summerland for a hearty, casual breakfast at Summerland Beach Cafe. Wander and explore the adorable shops this tiny beach town has to offer. On your way back to Santa Barbara, take a stroll along Coast Village Road in Montecito for more shopping. If you're thirsty have a refreshing cocktail on the patio at Honor Bar, their Bees Knees and Margarita are sure to quench your thirst! Then make your way to Butterfly beach for a swim in the sun.
Return your e-bikes and freshen up for the evening, before heading to dinner at the popular Spanish spot, Loquita, for paella and tapas. End your evening at the trendy Pearl Social for delicious cocktails and DJ tunes.
Day 3: Hike and sip
Wake up, have a quick snack and head to the trailhead to hike up three miles to Inspiration Point for beautiful views above Santa Barbara. This trail has a moderate incline, but it's a popular trail for locals and tourists. As a reward, head to Helena Ave Bakery for a hearty and healthy brunch. After brunch, explore the funk zone including The Blue Door Municipal Wines, Validation Ale and Raoul's Textiles. Wander over to Melville Winery tasting room where they serve their award-winning light Pinots and Syrahs in a bright and chic spot right on State Street. Don't skip the cheese plate if you're still hungry after the hike! After wine tasting, head up State Street to explore more shops, galleries and tasting rooms, or even pop into the Santa Barbara Art Museum. End your evening at Satellite for a glass of natural wine and delicious vegan food!
Need to Know
There are so many great activities, restaurants, beaches and hikes in Santa Barbara, this is just a taste of what your weekend could look like. Please reach out to me if you ever need help planning your Central Coast getaway!
Looking for more travel inspiration? Check out my guide, Enjoy Amsterdam Like a Local.
Get in touch with Meagan
Did you like this guide? Reach out to customize and book your own experience. Or, just to chat about travel in general.
You can normally expect a response from Meagan within a business day or so. You'll also be subscribed to our travel newsletter (you can unsubscribe at any time).
This guide is part of our ongoing series on travel to Santa Barbara.