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There’s nothing cozier when November is drawing to a close than a trip to one of the loveliest areas along the entire Pacific coastline. California in the late fall is a gorgeous landscape, and there’s so much to do this time of year! Spending your Santa Barbara Thanksgiving with us is a brilliant idea. Let us share with you some of the things we’re most excited for this year.


Visit the Santa Barbara Night Market on your first night in town. This is a treat and a half for anyone in town between November 23rd and January 6th. It’s a European-style Christmas night market where you’ll be able to see arts and crafts from talented creators, holiday-themed decor, live music for everyone to enjoy, food and drinks, and sometimes even carolers. This market is only open Monday through Wednesday, 4pm – 10pm, so make sure to go while you can!

Thursday – Thanksgiving Day!

Participate in the Thanksgiving Day Pumpkin Smash at the Santa Barbara Zoo, happening at 10am! The zookeepers are going to be giving the animals pumpkins and letting chaos ensue! It’s going to be wild, and we all want to be there. A great place to eat out on Thanksgiving Day is The Lark Santa Barbara. They’ll treat you like family here, and the food is unbeatable. Or, get your food to go and take it to a pretty park to enjoy together, such as Shoreline Park.

Friday, Saturday, and Sunday

After your exciting Thanksgiving Day, you might want some relaxing activities to kick back and enjoy. Head to the beach! Check out the scenery at Arroyo Burro Beach, colloquially known as Hendry’s Beach. This is a great choice for the family who brought the family dog along. Or, you can head to East Beach, where the volleyball nets provide a great activity for the family to engage in. If you choose to explore Summerland Beach, you might see some horses walking along the shoreline too. Explore Old Mission Santa Barbara for a taste of history and a way to wind down at the end of the vacation. Sunday afternoon is also a great time to visit the Santa Barbara Museum of Art.

Experience a Santa Barbara Thanksgiving with Paradise Retreats

No matter what you plan to do while you’re here visiting us, the most important part of your Thanksgiving 2019 vacation will be finding the perfect place to stay for you and your loved ones. Contact us today and we’ll help you take the first step.

Even if you have never been to Santa Barbara, you still probably know all about the wonderful things there are to do here in paradise. From hiking trails to surfing the swells to fine art, fine dining, and community theater, our oceanside town is an exciting and vibrant place to visit. And as if that weren’t enough, when you combine the standard activities with some of the following special events, your California vacation promises to be one that you will never forget. Here’s a list of some of our favorite upcoming Santa Barbara Attractions that should not be missed!

Nam June Paik: TV Clock

This ongoing video art show is scheduled to end soon, so if the art of Nam June Paik interests you, you should be sure to visit soon. Held every day except Mondays until October 14, this innovative show will make you stop and think. Found at the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, ticket prices range from free to $10, making this show a treat that fits into any vacation budget.

USPA President’s Club Final, September 23

September is a big month for Santa Barbara attractions and the US Polo Association President’s Club Final is a big deal! Starting at 2:30PM at the Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club, the ball drops at 3:00PM and the fun continues late into the night. Ticket prices start at $12 for General Admission and can skyrocket up to $500; an afterparty held in the main clubhouse allows the opportunity to let your hair down and dance like there’s no tomorrow.

Santa Barbara’s Vintner’s Celebration of Harvest Weekend, October 12 – 14

Held at the Old Mission Santa Ines, this fall celebration offers it all: food, wine, entertainment, wine, the I Love Lucy look-alike contest, more wine, and of course, the infamous grape stomp to help make more wine. Vacationing in wine country has never been so great!

Cancer: The Urgency of Now, November 2

Isn’t it great when you can do something fun and do a good deed at the same time? This benefit show, with the proceeds going towards the fight against cancer, features the piano stylings of David Bowie’s pianist, Mike Garson. It is a two-hour celebration held at the Lobero Theater. Ticket prices begin at $45 and top out at $200; this worthy benefit may just end up being the highlight of your entire vacation.

Choose Paradise and Enjoy More Santa Barbara Attractions These Time of the Year!

Paradise Retreats offers a vacation experience that you’ll never forget through our stylish houses that still maintain a sense of home, luxury amenities, and the chance for more family bonding experiences. Reserve yours today!

So you’re planning some things to do in Santa Barbara and you have 48 hours to fill, but just aren’t sure how to do it? There’s no problem when staying in a Paradise Retreats vacation escape, because our helpful staff just lives for challenges like this one. Because we love our guests, we have compiled this list on how to best spend your 48 hours in Santa Barbara!

While It May Be Tempting to Sleep a Little Longer

When the sun begins to awaken you with its rays, you more than likely will be tempted to pull the pillow over your head and go back to sleep—but don’t! You only have 48 hours in paradise, and we’re going to fill as much of those waking moments as possible. Besides, you want to start your day out right with a hearty and filling breakfast at the Scarlett Begonia! Serving their famous Yukon Gold Cinnamon Roll and a large selection of breakfast goodies, their foods will keep your “engines” stoked for the next few hours of adventures.

After all that good food, a hike through the canyons of Parma Park will help burn off the extra calories consumed, and the views from the trails that traverse the park will feed your soul. Located off Stanwood Drive, it’s places like this that continually remind us that we do live in Paradise.

A quick lunch at Pickles & Swiss will stave off hunger pangs, but eat light; you want to save room for tonight’s romantic dinner at Bouchon Santa Barbara. The afternoon of your first day is meant for relaxing at Ledbetter Beach and resting your tired feet. Don’t worry, there are plenty of things to do in Santa Barbara in day 2.

Day 2 – Things to do in Santa Barbara

Day two is also divided into two parts, with the morning spent at Stearns Wharf. Start with breakfast at On the Alley, then continue the morning by visiting the stores and shops that make the Wharf so popular! Pick up souvenirs for your family, a cute new bikini for you, and if the mood strikes, check out the fishing equipment for rent at Stearns Wharf Bait & Tackle. Fishing off the pier is allowed, and who knows, you may even catch tonight’s dinner! Families with children will love spending the afternoon at the Santa Barbara Zoo. Hang around until 5PM and the animals get really active for feeding time!

As the Sun Sets on Another Gorgeous Day in Santa Barbara

Dinner on the patio of your Paradise Retreats home away from home is a grand experience, especially if you’re grilling up the catch of the day. Watch the sun set over the mountains in the background as you chat with your family about your fun-filled 48 hours in paradise and be thankful that you were able to spend a good portion of your time in one of the most comfortable and stylish vacation homes in all of California. Reserve yours today!

The grace period is over. Summer has officially arrived all over the world! Planning a vacation during the hot and muggy months of summer can often be an experience you wish could have taken place in the cooler months, but when you plan a Santa Barbara vacation, you’re guaranteed an awesome time, no matter what the temperatures are outside! It doesn’t hurt, however, that summer in Santa Barbara is temperate and even cool, but on those days when the red line does climb over the 85 degree mark, these will be the best things to do in Santa Barbara to keep you cool and happy!

Head to the Beach

The sun is shining, the sky is blue, and the water is perfect at the beaches of Santa Barbara, beaches that are the most beautiful in the world. Can you give us any reason why you shouldn’t spend a day or two enjoying the cool sensation of ocean water against lightly tanned skin? We didn’t think so, and if you’re feeling the burn of abnormally high temperatures, there’s nothing cooler!

Visit a Museum

The history of Santa Barbara is a rich and compelling one, and getting a peek into our past with a museum tour is one of our favorite ways to kill some hours on a hot summer afternoon. The Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History lets you explore our natural side and if art is more your thing, The Museum of Contemporary Art will keep you enthralled for hours!

Grab a Beer

Cold beer and a hot summer day goes together like peanut butter and jelly; each are fine on their own, but mix them together and you create something magical! The Lama Dog Tap Room & Bottle Shop is our current favorite, but every brewery in the area has something special to offer, so if you’re out and about and happen to see one that piques your interest, go ahead and check it out!

Rent a Paradise Retreats Home with a Pool

Nothing beats a swim under the stars, and if you have rented one of our homes with pools, you can enjoy their cool comforts ANY time of the day. Greet the morning with a splash or say farewell to the day with a quiet float as the stars twinkle overhead; there’s never a wrong time to take a dip when the pool is in your own backyard!

Rent Your Own Piece of Paradise Today!

The best vacations can be made better with the right vacation homes. Reserve yours today with Paradise Retreats and discover the difference!

In our minds, there’s no better place to spend your 4th of July vacation than right here in paradise: Santa Barbara, California. While we weren’t the birthplace of America, with a rich history dating back to the 16th century, we came pretty close and we celebrate accordingly! With colorful displays choreographed to music lasting far longer than those of “lesser cities,” our fireworks shows will be the perfect addition to your Santa Barbara vacation. Here’s a list of shows to enjoy the 4th of July Fireworks in Santa Barbara!

2018 Independence Day Fireworks Display in Santa Barbara

Held at the Santa Barbara Waterfront and Stearns Wharf, the excitement starts at 11 AM and lasts through approximately 9PM. Featuring live music, shopping opportunities, face painting, food and drink, this celebration is one that will be enjoyed by the entire family!

2018 Ventura 4th of July Fireworks Show & Family Picnic at Ventura College

The Rotary Club of Ventura had your family in mind when creating this special Santa Barbara 4th of July event. Gates open at 5PM and ticket prices start at $4 for a night of food, music, and kids’ fun in what has been billed as the friendliest hometown picnic in America! Offering food trucks, inflatable fun, and the grand finale, a sky concert featuring over 3000 fireworks choreographed to music, this show will thrill children of ALL ages!

The 21st Annual Rotary Clubs of Goleta Santa Barbara 4th of July Fireworks Festival

This family-friendly fireworks spectacular features all that makes our country the greatest place on Earth. From glow sticks to live music to food booths to dancing, face painting, and of course, fireworks, your day of fun will get better with each passing moment! Located just 8 miles from your Paradise Retreats vacation escape, you might have a difficult time remembering the last time your kids looked THIS happy—and that smile on your face won’t be fading anytime soon, either!

Your Paradise Retreats Vacation Escape

While we can’t promise you’ll be able to see live fireworks from your patio, we can guarantee the next best thing: being able to watch a fireworks show on television from the air conditioned comfort of one of our luxury vacation homes! Our large flat screened televisions will make it feel as if you are really there, so prepare your favorite summer beverage, prop your feet up on the coffee table, and enjoy a bug and allergy free evening in paradise! Reserve yours today!

Visit our blogs for more awesome stuff 

There is no time of year in which you cannot enjoy the incredible beauty of Santa Barbara. But around Halloween, the city comes to life with opportunity after opportunity to have an amazing time. The best part is that there is something for everyone here. Whether you are looking to go to amazing parties, do something fun with kids, or anything in between, you will find a Santa Barbara Halloween that you won’t soon forget.

Great Parties

Santa Barbara is a fun-loving town with a strong college presence, so the community takes a good party quite seriously. There is no time when this is truer than during Halloween. You can find great parties throughout the whole city, but you will find the Halloween version of Mardi Gras in Isla Vista. This little section of town is right on the water next to the University of California, Santa Barbara. There are endless places to celebrate that will be filled with some of the most inventive costumes you have ever seen.

Great Family Fun

There are also countless ways to enjoy the holiday with family in Santa Barbara. You can find trick or treating opportunities all over the city, but some of the most unique opportunities are in the Paseo Nuevo district downtown. You cannot find a more energetic trick or treating experience than you can here. Retailers throughout the area hand out candy, and then the party turns into a monster mash themed dance party.

Haunted Houses

Santa Barbara may not seem like the spookiest place, what with all the beaches and amazing weather, but it has a very long history, and it can feel very haunted. There are plenty of haunted houses throughout the city that will provide a memorable experience. You can find casual haunted houses that are better for families, or truly terrifying ones like the Grimsley Haunt, which is one of the most notorious on California’s Central Coast.

The Weather in Santa Barbara Halloween Season

The weather in Santa Barbara is always perfect. This gives it an immediate advantage over places that offer frigid temperatures during the Halloween season. This gives you the ultimate freedom in picking out your costumes, and it gives you the ability to be outside and spend the night however you want. You could even hit the beach if you want!

As you can see from this very short list, there is something for everyone to enjoy during this Santa Barbara Halloween season. But it does not begin to do justice to the endless array of options you have in Santa Barbara this Halloween. Take a trip here and find your perfect Halloween in Santa Barbara.

As the hot months of summer roll around, thousands of people are making their plans to visit Santa Barbara to seek refuge from the heat. Among beautiful beaches and exciting establishments, you will find countless ways to stay cool this summer. Here are some Santa Barbara summer activities that are sure to keep you comfortable while providing a great time in this amazing city.

Visit Santa Claus Beach

Because you will find endless stretches of beautiful beach, this category could be more generally summed up by saying, “visit any beach.” But still, Santa Claus Beach is a unique one that everyone should visit at some point. Unlike many of the most popular beaches in Santa Barbara, Santa Claus Beach offers great seclusion and peace. It is just down the coast from the heart of the city in a little beach town called Carpinteria. Once you find yourself here, there are countless ways to spend a day enjoying the refreshing ocean breezes and cool waters.

Explore a Museum

Santa Barbara is not simply a beautiful place, but an old city that is home to an incredible history and a resultant vibrant culture. One of the ways to stay cool this summer while exploring these elements is by visiting one of the city’s amazing museum’s. You will find a museum focusing on practically every subject imaginable focused on life in this coastal city. Visit the Carriage and Western Art Museum for something truly unique.


Any vacation destination would not be complete without a wide range of dining options. Santa Barbara does not disappoint in this regard with amazing eateries focusing on every type of cuisine you can think of. The mixture of great food, ambiance, and amazing views makes for a relaxing Santa Barbara activity that is sure to cool anyone off. Downtown Santa Barbara and alongside the harbor are great places to find some of Santa Barbara’s most popular restaurants and bars.


Santa Barbara has become somewhat of a mecca of shopping over the years. Throughout the charming city streets of downtown and the quieter nooks of some of the little beach villages around offer everything from national brands to local artisans. Whether you are looking for something in particular or you just want to explore some of the most diverse shops you will find anywhere, you will find a fun day and cool day shopping Santa Barbara.

Visit Wine Country

For a day spent away from the beach among the beautiful sites and cool breezes of the Santa Ynez Mountains, you can explore one of California’s best wine valleys. You can pick one winery and spend the day or organize a tour of the entire valley. Whatever you choose to do, it is sure to be a lovely day spent cooling off.

Great Santa Barbara Summer Activities to Enjoy from Our Rental Properties

While the summer in Santa Barbara is certainly not unbearable, it is always good to have a few ideas regarding staying cool on vacation. This is a good list but there is plenty more to keep you busy and keep you cool.

Santa Barbara is one of the best vacation destinations in the country and provides numerous things to do both in Santa Barbara and in the surrounding area. Santa Barbara and the surrounding area have a deep history that creates really interesting attractions. Whether you are looking to grab a drink or see a show, there are plenty of Santa Barbara night activities for the night owl on vacation.

Santa Barbara Brewing Company

The Santa Barbara Brewing Company is the oldest brewery in the Santa Barbara area and provides you with everything you could want and more out of an amazing bar. The brewing company lies just a few blocks from Stearns Wharf and features not only craft beer options, but also amazing food options as well. This brewpub uses their brewing spirit to create incredible and unique craft beers and uses some of these beers to create even better food. The Santa Barbara Brewing Company has a collegiate feel, but more reminiscent of the days where you hung out in perfect little bars and attempted to become a beer snob. There are seven beers on tap year round and several different rotating beers with guest taps for trying new favorites.

Café Zaytoon

When you enter Café Zaytoon, you are welcomed to a hidden oasis in the center of Santa Barbara. This amazing café is the best place where you can experience fresh and tasty Lebanese cuisine at any time of day. Café Zaytoon has an amazing garden you can enjoy with your special guests that is complete with the sounds of the waterfall, the glow of little lights and the warmth of a fire. The best part of this Santa Barbara night activity is definitely the atmosphere. A great attraction to visit on vacation is somewhere that you can escape the stresses of life and be transported to another world; the garden at Zaytoon does just this. You will experience the exotic tastes of their menu, hear interesting and new music on their patio, and be transported to another far off time and place.

Rori’s Artisanal Creamery

One thing you need on vacation is a great dessert. After you have walked around the beautiful area and seen Santa Barbara, drive down to Rori’s and pull up a chair for some delicious artisanal ice cream. Try any one of their rotating flavors and experience ice cream bliss.

Great Homes to Return To After These Santa Barbara Night Activities

These three attractions are great for families, couples, singles and groups of people who love to experience Santa Barbara. Try one of these on your next vacation.

Are you staying in one of our Santa Barbara vacation rentals? If so, you’ll find a variety of amazing attractions and things to do throughout the city, though few are as fun-filled as Stearns Wharf! The longest deep-water pier between Los Angeles and San Francisco, Stearns Wharf in Santa Barbara is home to a variety of attractions, shops, restaurants, and more – so much, in fact, that it can be hard to choose what to do in a limited time frame! Fortunately, we’re here to help you find what you need. Read on to see the top five reasons to visit Stearns Wharf!



There’s no doubt that vacation is time to splurge a little (or a lot)! And if you’re not sure when you’ll have the chance to pick up souvenirs, stop by Stearns Wharf and get all the goodies you need in one place! Devil and the Deep Blue Sea offers toys and other gifts for kids, while Coastal Treasures and Nature’s Own Gallery offer accessories and jewelry. And if you’re just not sure what you want, Old Wharf Trading Company features an eclectic selection of merchandise.



There’s nothing like the sight of the sea to fire up an appetite! Thankfully, the restaurants here mean business, and keep customers coming back with delicious meals time and again. You’ll find American fare here as well as, of course, seafood! And for dessert—or a sinful snack—you can stop by the ice cream or candy shoppe. Enjoy a burger or an ice cream cone while watching the waves!



On the topic of waves, the wharf is a fine spot to watch the ocean. The sun glitters all day among the water, and Stearns Wharf in Santa Barbara is a magnificent place to watch the sunset.



There’s plenty to see and do in Santa Barbara, and some of it is right here! The Museum of Natural History hosts its Sea Center here, and for a more hands-on approach to learning about the sea, sign up for a cruise with Celebration Cruises, or take the Santa Barbara Water Taxi to the harbor and add more fun to your trip!


With the sea spray stimulating you, Stearns Wharf is a great place to fit some light exercise into your vacation. The driving-and-standing combo that characterizes so many vacations could use some variation, right? Then save money on parking and park on the street for a salutary walk to the Wharf. With so many shops, restaurants, views, and diversions, you’ll be power-walking all day just to get to the next attraction!

Stay with Paradise Retreats When Visiting the Stearns Wharf in Santa Barbara

Like many of the rich and famous, you too could have a home in Santa Barbara! Call us at 1-805-275-1851 to learn more about our offerings. Whether you’re on a vacation for the activities (such as museums, galleries, and shopping) or the relaxation (in our fabulous rentals), stay with Paradise Retreats: you won’t be disappointed!

Photo By Jllm06 – Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=31153828

Planning a weekend getaway with the guys is a great way to relax, kick back, and most importantly, have fun. Whether you are just journeying out just for the thrill of it, or you are celebrating a birthday or bachelor party, there is something for every crew in Santa Barbara. Explore the best beaches, breweries, and more with your best bros with a Santa Barbara getaway!

Surf’s Up

It is nearly impossible to vacation in California and not venture out to one of the seemingly endless pristine beaches. There is no better way to soak up the sun than to get in the water and surf in Santa Barbara, one of the surfing capitals of the West Coast. Head to Rincon Point, the “Queen of the Coast,” to enjoy perfect waves along this half mile stretch of coastline. Expert surfers will want to also try out Sandspit, which features heavy backwash and long tubes. More of a beginner? Try out Leadbetter Point or Campus Point instead. Or even better, take lessons as a group and have some friendly competition with who can stay on the surfboard the longest. The loser buys a round of drinks!

Hit the Funk Zone

As the name implies, the Funk Zone is a funky downtown warehouse district that offers a wide variety of things to do. Wander through art galleries and shops, eat at some delicious restaurants, and hit up some amazing wineries and breweries. For those that love craft brews, the Figueroa Mountain Brewing Company has rotating specialty beers on tap and flight options if you want to try them all. Best of all, the Funk Zone is close to the beach!

Golf Along the American Riviera

Bring your clubs on vacation with you and enjoy a round along some of the most beautiful golf courses you will find anywhere! There are plenty of courses to choose from, all within a short distance from each other. Rancho San Marcos is located within the Santa Ynez Mountains and this well-maintained course gives you a taste of nature. Glen Annie Golf Club has lake and waterfall features along with amazing views of the Channel Islands. This course is also pretty forgiving, so if you indulge in the craft beer cart you won’t be punished! Lastly, Sandpiper Golf Club has been named one of the Top 100 Public Golf Courses by Golf Digest, and is situated on an ocean bluff, giving you water views along every hole. No matter which course you choose, you and the guys are sure to have a blast!

Plan a Great Guy’s Santa Barbara Getaway

No matter if you prefer ocean waves, golf courses, or fine dining, Santa Barbara offers nearly everything you could ask for the perfect weekend Santa Barbara getaway with the guys. Plan your vacation today!