Santa Barbara, California

Why now?

Located at the base of the Santa Ynez mountain range just 95 miles north of LA, the south-facing beaches and token Spanish architecture has earned Santa Barbara the moniker of the “American Riviera.” The red roofs, white stucco walls and surrounding greenery will transport you to a colonial Spanish village that rocks the laid-back vibe southern California has become famous for.

When to go?

With a unique microclimate that boasts 300-plus days of sunshine a year, there isn’t a bad time to visit. Head here in October to beat those wintertime blues, or opt for a spring visit between April and early June to avoid the throngs of tourists who flock here in the summer months.

Who to take with you

While Santa Barbara is infamous as a prime location to tie the knot, we suggest taking on the town with your go-to girl gang. Whether you’re taking a dip at Butterfly Beach or cruising through the hills with the music blasting, you’re sure to make memories worth toasting to.

Most likely to bump into?

Sandy-haired surfers, aspiring DJs, honeymooners and throngs of locals all heading down State Street for a night out.

Don’t miss

Head down to the Funk Zone for a night out amongst local hotspots or go for a stroll in the garden at the foot of the Mission to surround yourself in the intoxicating aroma of 1,500 varieties of roses. For the adventurous spirit, hike up to Lizard’s Mouth at sunset to see the unparalleled view of the Santa Ynez valleys washed in a deep golden haze.

An essential to bring with you

Good vibes and a great playlist – think top down, cruising along the coast with your chicest shades kind of music.

How to get there

Fly into Santa Barbara airport or opt for the larger LAX and rent a car. The drive north along the 101 is well worth it for the stunning oceanside views.

Discover More...

Destination Inspiration: Bryce Canyon, Utah

You May Also Like

City Guides

You know how you have that one incredible friend who knows their city inside out? That’s us. We take the world’s most dynamic destinations, hand-pick the best bits and give them to you in one place. This is the kind of guide that you don’t need to run by a local – it was written by one. Eat your heart out, shop until you drop, drink like a fish, dance your socks off, sleep – then repeat.


Curate your bookcase with the full SUITCASE library. From Volume 2 through 27, we've been around the world, explored uncharted landscapes and reexamined travel perceptions along the way. We invite you to do the same; grow your collection today.

Download Suitcase App
Learn More