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Sunny Santa Barbara

Beach or mountains?

With Santa Barbara you don’t have to choose.

We recently traveled out West to California to celebrate my husband’s 30th birthday. After throwing around a million ideas, we settled on the beautiful town of Santa Barbara. With the temps in the mid 60s to 70s, we couldn’t stop talking about the weather the entire trip. The views were breathtaking; mountains in the backdrop, beach at your toes, palm trees up above. We stayed in Montecito, which was our favorite town to walk around, shop and dine. We rode bikes along the beach into The Funk Zone for wine tasting. The boys played golf every day, the girls explored (and took photo after photo of all the Spanish inspired décor). I have this thing with floors, colorful tiled floors to be exact, and SB takes the cake. There were so many cute shops, restaurants, and wineries galore, that even with 3 full days, we didn’t have enough time to do everything. Plus when I am able to escape the office for a few days, I do try to catch some RNR. This trip, the pool was calling my name and with a good read in hand (currently Zero to One), I decided to squeeze in some time to catch those Cali rays!  

Below I’ve listed our favorite eats, boutiques, and must-dos for your next trip to SB.



  • Jeannine’s – this is a must try! Grab a mimosa and sit outside… celeb spotting op.
  • Bella Vista – Best avocado toast I’ve ever tasted.
  • Coral Sands – Try their sashimi for lunch and spend your happiest hour at their aquarium bar. You’ll watch Nemo and Dory just keep swimming, swimming, swimming.
  • La Super Rica Taqueria – Hole in the wall taco joint. They make their own homemade tortillas as you order. Everything had it’s own unique flavor. PLUS for all you Scandal fans, we ate at the table next to George Newbern AKA Charlie. He also played Brian, the husband, from Father of the Bride. I’m not a big movie buff, but I spotted and recognized him first, so I was pretty proud of myself. ;)
  • The Nook – Local brewery with the best truffle fries.


  • San Ysidro Ranch – My favorite dinner of the trip! Go early to have a glass of vino while you explore their beautiful gardens. Request a table on their upstairs patio so you can dine under the twinkling lights. Everything was delicious, but my favorites were the duck spring rolls and Grand Marnier soufflé. Mm mm good.
  • TreLune – Dirty Martini? Check. Pizza appetizer? Scrumptious. Caprese Salad? Yep. Crab Claws? You bet.
  • The Lark – Cute spot in The Funk Zone. Check out some of the wine tasting rooms around the area, then finish with dinner here. Great atmosphere outside on their patio. Their cornbread was to die for!
  • Sakana – This is where the locals get their sushi fix. Their pressed sushi was right on point.



  • Ride bikes along the beach into downtown Santa Barbara
  • Drive by the home of Oprah Winfrey – 1633 East Valley Road and TY Beanie Babies – 1000 Channel Drive.
  • Walk around Montecito and explore the art galleries
  • Wine Tasting in The Funk Zone
  • Play Golf at one of these 2 incredible courses – Sandpiper (Beach views) and Rancho San Marcos (Wine Country)
  • Relax at the Biltmore Spa
  • Catch some rays at the Coral Sands pool
  • Drive into the Wine Country to explore the vineyards