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The California coast is just what you need for a romantic and memorable Valentine’s Day getaway. Look no further than the beauty of Santa Barbara to host you and your loved one. The city offers a variety of romantic activities that will make your getaway one to remember for years to come. Here are some of the most romantic activities you can do when visiting Santa Barbara for Valentine’s Day:

Take a Sunset Walk at a Beach

With Santa Barbara sitting on the West Coast, you can expect some of the most beautiful sunsets you have ever seen. The best place to catch a romantic sunset is easily at the beach and luckily there are several pristine beaches right here in Santa Barbara. Butterfly Beach faces west, allowing you unparalleled views to the sunset. The beach is always clean and offers plenty of space to go on a romantic stroll. Make it even more romantic by planning on a picnic. Set up a blanket with your favorite snacks and maybe even a bottle of champagne. If the high tide rolls in, you can easily push back to the beach wall where you can still enjoy the views just as well.

Hike Up to Knapp’s Castle

Outdoor lovers will want to take advantage of the beautiful weather here in Santa Barbara and explore the many hiking trails. One popular trail will lead to a romantic outlook up at Knapp’s Castle. This castle was destroyed back in 1940 with an unfortunate fire. However, the stone ruins were left behind and feature some incredible views of the surrounding hills and coastlines. Crumbling stone walls are the perfect spot for some romantic photos to document your Valentine’s Day getaway. The hike up to the castle is relatively short and is less than a mile for a roundtrip. Knapp’s Castle is located approximately 20 minutes away from downtown Santa Barbara.

Visit the Santa Barbara Courthouse

Now you might be thinking, “How is visiting a court house romantic?” Once you see the Santa Barbara Courthouse up close, you will realize just how incredible this building is. This courthouse has been named one of the most beautiful buildings in the country. It is designed after the Spanish Colonial Revival style for which Santa Barbara is known. You will notice the mesmerizing shade of red on the roof tiles. In fact, many couples have sealed the deal right here at the courthouse and used the building for their wedding photos. The Santa Barbara Courthouse features different attractions that must be seen during your visit. The Mural Room features gorgeous murals relating to the history of Santa Barbara. The murals take up over 6,000 square feet of wall space and are frequently used as the centerpiece for wedding photos. The El Mirador clock tower stands tall among the building. The sunken gardens feature sprawling plant life in a tropical setting. You probably did not think you could do so much at the local courthouse. Make your visit even more romantic by planning for a picnic in the gardens!

Go Whale Watching

Santa Barbara is a popular area to hit the seas and go whale watching. These majestic creatures frequently spend their time just off the coast and will swim up to the surface. Condor Express is the top choice in all of Santa Barbara to book a whale watching experience. Whales will stay in the area year-round so you can still enjoy this around Valentine’s Day. Your whale watching cruise can give you potential sightings of gray whales, humpback whales, and even dolphins. Each whale watching experience is two and a half hours in length and is available every day of the week. Condor Express also provides dinner cruises and other options to help celebrate your Valentine’s Day with. You can book your reservation by calling 805-882-0088 or by emailing info@condorexpress.com.

Reserve a Valentine’s Day Dinner

End your Valentine’s Day getaway by making a reservation for a romantic dinner at a local Santa Barbara restaurant. A poplar option that offers New American cuisine with a romantic ambience is The Lark Santa Barbara. This local restaurant uses fresh ingredients and features a wood lined quarters with an outdoor patio. While the building previously held a former fish market it has now been turned into an urban eatery. Enjoy luxury entrees such as fresh seafood paired with local wines. Reservations are highly encouraged as only patio seating is available at this time. Place your reservation by calling 805-284-0370.

More to Enjoy for Valentine’s Day

As you can see, there are plenty of romantic activities in Santa Barbara. Make the most of your romantic journey by reserving one of our vacation rentals. You and your loved one can have a variety of amenities as you enjoy each other’s company.

If you were ever in doubt, a grand gesture on Valentine’s Day will always be appreciated by your own valentine, and a romantic trip to Santa Barbara for an extended weekend in one of our Paradise Retreats luxury vacation homes is just about as romantic as you can get! Sometimes getting away from the hustle and bustle of real life for a few days of peace and quiet can be just what the romance doctor ordered, and after you arrive, if you’re still unsure of what to do to make her feel special, just remember to check back to this page which you ingeniously bookmarked on your laptop in advance! We’ll give you the ideas; you can take the credit!

Breakfast in Bed is So Last Millennium

Anyone can throw a couple of pieces in a toaster and squeeze some orange juice into a glass to be spilled—we mean, to be eaten in bed—but soaring high in the sky in a colorful balloon with champagne is the true meaning of a grand gesture. Sky’s the Limit Ballooning Adventures offer a Santa Barbara Champagne Morning Flight that will make you the hero of Valentine’s Day in Santa Barbara!

Cupcakes on the Beach

Chocolates are wonderful, but a petite gateau from Chooket says I love you with a little more emphasis! Swing by their shop in Santa Barbara before heading to East Beach and pick up a box of deliciousness meant to be shared as you sit on a blanket in the sand watching the waves crash against the beach.

Antique Store Romance Scavenger Hunt

Stroll the aisles of the Antique Center Mall searching for special items that mean something only to the two of you: an antique map that pinpoints the place you had your first date, an antique toy train that depicts the cross-country train trip you took for your honeymoon, or simply a newspaper printed on the day your sweetheart was born. Obviously, every scavenger hunt will be different for every family, but the time it takes to set it up will show how much you care.

Dinner at the Wine Cask Restaurant

Located at 813 Anacapa Street, the Wine Cask offers California cuisine with an extensive wine list from the interior of a historic 19th century structure. A romantic dinner for two in its classic courtyard will never be forgotten.

Experience an Unforgettable Valentine’s Day in Santa Barbara

Quiet conversations on the deck of your Paradise Retreats vacation escape, romance movie binge-a-thons as you cuddle on the plush sofa, or walks along the beach you can see from your vacation home window as the sun sets over the ocean: these small gestures can be the grandest ones of all to experience a romantic Valentine’s Day in Santa Barbara. Reserve yours today!