Santa Barbara / Central Coast

Santa Barbara combines the best of Northern and Southern California. Called the American Riviera, the area abounds in natural beauty, and carefully manicured estates with ornate exotic gardens. You can spend as much time as you like in the saddle such as climbing up Gibraltar to the sweeping views from the ridgeline traversed by Camino Cielo. The riding here earns well-deserved meals with fresh, locally sourced ingredients, delicious local wines and no shortage of amazing places to relax and rest your head after a full day. Join us!

Biking: Ideal for intermediate to advanced cyclists. A lot of pro cyclists train in the mountains here. Routes of 30-60 miles with 2,000-6,000 feet of climbing or more per day are possible. Some shuttling is highly suggested to connect the wine country region with Santa Barbara itself.

 

Hikes: Short hikes are possible in the many park lands nearby.

 

Kayaking: Paddling near Santa Barbara is great for a couple of hours, but if you don’t mind investing some time on a ferry boat, you can paddle out at the Channel Islands National Park.

 

Winetasting: Fans of Sideways will delight in recollecting this was filmed here, rest assured we won’t make you drink any merlot. With its unusual (for the California coast) east-west oriented mountain ranges and the valley’s ability to cool down with coastal fog when it’s scorching further inland, the region is known for the cooler climate varietals of pinot noir and chardonnay. We like Riverbench, Rancho Sisquoc, and Sunstone to name a few.

 

Misc: Horseback riding, Old Mission Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara Botanical Gardens, shopping the boutiques of Montecito.

Mid Range: Hotel Corque

 

Upper end: Fess Parker Wine Country Inn, Santa Ynez Inn, Bacara Resort

 

Super Luxe: Four Seasons Biltmore, San Ysidro Ranch

Los Olivos Wine Merchant Café

 

Sides

 

Trattoria Grappolo

 

Bouchon

Year-round is great. The temperatures stay pretty similar throughout the year, while rain is more likely in winter, the region gets less than half the number of rainy days Northern California.

“It’s hard not to fall for the charm of Santa Barbara. I first visited this city in 2005 on my way back from a trip to Baja California reconnecting with an old friend who grew up, and still resides there. His family, all local artists, musicians, painters, photographers and writers, showed me their city and it’s stunning surroundings with deserving pride. Every chance I get, I go back.”