“I can't wait to go back someday!”
Let us never forget
Today was our last day in Santa Barbara and we were really sad to be leaving. More importantly, today was a very sad and poignant day for America remembering those who lost their lives in the horrific 9/11 attacks. The mood was more sullen around the town and a beautiful tribute had been laid out on the beach.
We decided on our last day to rent bikes and drive along the beaches to capture the beauty of Santa Barbara for the last time. We rode past West Beach, Stearns Wharf and the Harbor and up the hill, where we could see views of the beautiful town, sea and the mountains behind. I was going to miss this place!
I love football (soccer)!
Today one of our friend’s took us to a UCSB soccer match in the evening. It was really awesome to see the game and the atmosphere in the stadium. The turnout for matches is incredible; college sport is taken really seriously over in the USA unlike in the UK, and I felt jealous that this many people came to watch these guys play! There is also a tradition to throw tortillas when UCSB score a goal… very unique but cool. It was really fun to experience a college soccer game.Read More
“Come on Gauchos!”
Today we decided to be cultural as so far we had seen more of the beaches, shops and inside of bars than anything else!
Our first stop on the cultural trip was the Santa Barbara County Courthouse. This might sound a bit peculiar but this building is over 80 years old and has incredible Spanish Colonial Revival architecture, with beautifully lush ‘sunken gardens’ in front of the Courthouse. Plenty of photo opportunities here.
Next we ventured to the Presidio of Santa Barbara, which although most of the original rooms had been destroyed, was really interesting. It had reconstructed the rooms and there were signs and information telling you all about Santa Barbara’s history and the Santa Barbara Mission, which the Presidio was built to protect. If you are interested in history and culture then this is a place to visit and it is only a quick tour – one hour at most.
Our final stop was the Mission Santa Barbara itself. This was the tenth of 21 Franciscan missions in California and...Read More
Life's a Beach
Today we went down to the beach and Stearns Wharf using the Waterfront Shuttle which goes up and down State Street (the main street through Santa Barbara). This is really useful for anyone wanting to get around Santa Barbara without a car, especially since, as the name would suggest, it drops you right at the Waterfront.
There are two main beaches at the front – West Beach and East Beach with the bottom of State Street and the famous dolphin fountain in the middle of the two. West beach is the nicer beach so this is where you should go if you want a day to relax, sunbathe, swim in the sea and play volleyball.
When we wanted a break, we walked down to Stearns Wharf and then onto the Santa Barbara Harbor where all the sailing boats were lined up. This town is so pretty and quaint; I felt like I never wanted to leave!
Our final stop for the day was dinner at Eladio’s, one of our favourite places to eat in the town where we ordered some lovely seafood dishes. We didn't feel like...Read More
Back in Santa Barbara!
After 7 weeks in the USA we weren’t ready to return to the UK just yet, so we decided to prolong our trip and fly back to Santa Barbara for two weeks with the airline vouchers we had been given by Delta. My friend and I met at LAX and then got a bus to the Amtrak terminal where we boarded the train for the trip up the coast to Santa Barbara. The Amtrak is so nice in the USA, not at all like the train operators we have over here in the UK. The seats are so comfortable and spacious and the tickets are really good value as well (about $20 for the journey if I remember correctly).
Anyway, we made it to Santa Barbara, taking in the beautiful scenic views on the way. From there we got a cab to our new ‘home’ for two weeks. After spending the last 7 weeks in hotels we had decided to opt for a holiday rental for these two weeks primarily so we could cook for ourselves as we were getting bored (and fat!) from eating out so much. In a place like Santa Barbara, if you can find a holiday...Read More