Dear Santa Barbara,
You are always breaking my heart. I am lucky to call you home for a good part of the year and whenever I leave, I cry my heart out like a lovesick teenager. It's always as if you know that I am leaving too, days before I start packing there are beautiful multi-colored sunsets, perfectly timed low tides for impromptu walks on the beach and smiling faces with barefoot feet as happy as I am to be experiencing a Tuesday sunset.
How do I love thee? Let me count the ways. One, your architecture is nuts - almost an entire town dedicated to one style is kind of a love letter to European beach towns and the city's Spanish heritage. Your smooth arches, soft starchy white walls adorned with punchy orange and pink bougainvillea can be seen all over town. Two, your sunsets range from soft pinks to bright bursts of yellow and orange stacked onto blue and kind of sneak up on you while doing mundane tasks (like when leaving the supermarket). Three, there is something about the air. The soft, hazy air will turn your day around and make you smile for absolutely no reason.
I could go on and on and on but seriously you should visit this little oasis on the coast. Below are my most favorite haunts:
Shopping: A Tropical Affair, Mate Gallery, Bonita and Bonita Beach
Food: Brophy Brothers, Lucky Penny (Pizza), Oliver's, Santo Mezcal & Los Agaves
Daytime fun: Lotusland is a beautiful garden and the badass lady that owned it is the cherry on top, Butterfly Beach, Mesa Lane steps (dog friendly beach), and ResortPass offers a pool pass for purchase to the Belmond El Encanto pool (great food, views, and booze)
Night time is the right time: Santa Barbara Bowl, Joe's (extra strong drinks and people watching), Test Pilot