Few places enjoy a location to provide you with so much scenery, history, food&wine, and of course memories as The Santa Barbara area!
(Let me first ask you if you have anything to share about this area, please do! Some of this is my first time for some of the experiences, so your comments are appreciated!)
A week in the region has allowed me to appreciate the diversity of the area. Not being a "Sun or water worshipper", does not diminish my appreciation for the awesome region.
Here was the Itenery, with a few photo's:
Arrival at Santa Barbara Airport from STL, via Phoenix:
This was most pleasant as avoiding LAX, was a major break for me. The SB airport is clean, pleasant and easy!
In Goleta, you can stay at the nearby CY, or go about 9 miles South to S/B! You will find the hotels in S/B to be on the expensive side. The CY, and The RI in Oxnard are a whole lot less!
Cruise ships are making Santa Barbara a wonderful place to visit from the ship! Sorry about the fog and haze, but this German liner was very pretty!
You may want to arrive by Amtrak, the SB station is central and you can easily walk to downtown shopping, or other places of interest from the station. I chose to visit the "Young America's Foundation" across the parking lot for a free tour of their Ronald Reagan Presidency.
Here are RR's ten favorite books, on display in the center! Much about the "Cold War" was most interesting. Likewise, a walk to Macy's, Nordstrom's, Sak's and more were most enjoyable!
The next day was spent at The Reagan Ranch. Not open to the public, but I was lucky enough to have a wonderful invitation and it was most memorable.
The Reagan Ranch is scenic, and very basic. This is looking at the home from the rear of the house, and a picnic was most enjoyable!
The next day was spent in Ventura, and the Ventura Marina is a great place to visit. You may want to go to the "Channel Islands" from here. The whales where out, and the Islands made for a lot of conversation! The shopping and dining at The Marina were most special. Here was one of my favorite places for just about any meal:
La Petite, is located at The Marina, is on the water, and shops are interesting to walk to nearby.
The next day was spent, changing hotels and moving to The RI, in Oxnard. Very clean property, but make sure you have good directions, as it is located in a peaceful, mostly residential part of town. Sitting on a golf course they have packages for guests who want to enjoy a round of golf while visiting. The afternoon was spent going to Simi Valley and seeing the Reagan Library, and Simi countryside. Very nice!
President Reagan is buried atop a wonderful location. If you go, try to visit during the week. Give yourself at least two hours and afternoons may afford a better chance to get a parking spot. The museum closes at 5 PM, so you will want to arrive before 3 PM!
The next day featured a two hour relaxing ocean drive down US 1 to Hollywood, via Malibu and Santa Monica. The visit was wonderful and the crowds were huge. Try to "Window" shop at least on Rodeo Drive!
Rodeo Drive has the "Best of the best"! You will see some wonderful people as well as fantastic cars parked as people shop! There are many tours that feature almost everything Hollywood has to offer!
The last day was probably my favorite, visiting Solvang was so quaint and special. They had just finished celebrating "Danish Day's", the third week-end in September, and this is a wonderful place to see. Plenty of shops, markets, and scenery. Will make it back here next year and spend more time! Had a wonderful dinner at "The Hitching Post" (Featured int eh movie "Sideways"!
Scenes like this are abound in Slovang!
In closing, if you have any questions, ideas, or comments on the above, please let other MRI or myself know! Hope you enjoyed!
Looks like a great time for sure. We thought of visiting Santa Barbara a few years ago, but didn't for some reason. Your pictures make it clear we made a mistake by not making that trip, so now yet another spot to head off to for a weekend.
Thanks for the great information as always.
Thanks-you for your comment!
I enjoy American history and this area has more than its share of interesting places to see and experience. Forgot to share some other points of interest:
The Mission in Santa Barbara is most interesting and certainly historically beautiful!
So Many places to dine that are memorable and very good. Here's one in Malibu, "The Chart House" on Pacific Coast Highway. Wonderful food at a fair price!
Sunset from the table at "The Chart House" was romantic!
Thanks again Pluto!
jerrycoin - These photos are fantastic! I have not had the privilege of traveling to Santa Barbara (yet!) but your photos make me wish I could visit there ASAP! It looks beautiful. Thanks so much for sharing. Have you included your photos in our "Oh the Places You've Been in 2013" album as well? If not, please feel free to do so! Thanks again!
Thank-you for the kind words!
No, I really had not thought of putting any pictures of this trip on the "Oh the Places You've Been in 2013"! But I now will!
marybr, you would be surprised at how reasonable you can travel to this area of California. If you like to camp, there were a lot of places right on the beaches! Likewise, there were a lot of reasonably prices places to stay. I would caution you that Santa Barbara can be expensive. I should have written this story as, "$anta Barbara"! To give you an idea, I had to stay for the week-end at The Biltmore, (For a meeting, as my expense). The basic room at The Biltmore was as expensive (For ONE night!), as Four nights at The RI, and that was a two-bedroom suite at the RI!
Here are a few more pictures you may enjoy! Please let me know if I can provide any additional information!
The Biltmore did have some great desserts, and this "Chocolate souffle" was no exception!
If you enjoy "Farmers Markets", there are plenty to choose from. They are a fun and inexpensive way to keep your food costs down. That is one real advantage while staying at a RI!
If you enjoy "Pumpkin Patches", you will have hundreds of acres to "Pick your own" or just by it at one of the many fruit/vegetable stands!
The "Wine Cask" in Santa Barbara is a wonderful place to dine and enjoy local wines at a reasonable price and nice atmosphere!
The "Private room" at The Wine Cask, is a wonderful place to visit with friends during dinner!
This was my first time to eat at an "In/Out Burger", it was different. This was late at night and the staff was still very busy!
Don't forget "Carl's Jr." It was a lot like most "Fast food burger places", but was also very popular!
One thing for sure, you will have many places to choose from for entertainment, scenery, history, and dining!
I must confess, when I took that photo at The In/Out, I got some "Strange" looks! I was really "Out of place" with this crowd. Dressed up and all! This location was nice, it was at Hwy. 101 and Oxnard Ave. in Oxnard. There is also one location in Santa Barbara. It sits on Hwy. 101 between the airport and downtown. It is easy to miss, but there is an I Hop at the same exit.
Must say that I was not "Overwhelmed" with IN/OUT, and actually prefer Steak'n 'Shake more.
Thanks for your post!
Steak'n Shake, haven't been in one of them in a hundred years since was back in FL as a kid visiting my Grandparent's in Orlando, wow!
In-N-Out, you either like it or you don't. I like the fresh vegetables they put on the burgers and the fact the menu is small. Really not a large eat a burger out fella as I'd rather grill them at home.
Thank you, jerrycoin!
This is wonderful information! I've officially added Santa Barbara to my continuously growing list of "Amazing places I'd love to visit" (I've added In-N-Out to that list as well ... From everything I've heard about this place, I feel as though one hasn't truly lived unless they've visited In-N-Out when traveling to the west coast! Am I gathering that IAHFLYR & anadyr are fans?)
Again, thank you for your post and lovely photos!