Santa Barbara Presidio

Santa Barbara Presidio

Traveling to Santa Barbara usually means spending quite a bit of time relaxing and soaking up the sun, playing in the surf, and sticking your toes in the sand. However, the California coastal town also has plenty of other attractions to offer its visitors, with some holding a very special place in history. Situated downtown on the 5.5-acre Santa Barbara State Historic Park, the Santa Barbara Presidio is the ideal example of a landmark that's not to be missed.

Historical Significance

The presidio of Santa Barbara is a Spanish fortress that was founded in 1782 during the American Revolutionary War. It is the last of four military fortresses that were built up and down the California coastline. Aside from serving as military headquarters, it was also the governmental center of the region and offered protection against foreign invasion. Two of the presidio's original buildings are currently standing and are available for public tours.

What to Do During Your Visit to the Santa Barbara Presidio

The Presidio of Santa Barbara park is open daily from 10:30AM-4:30PM for an entrance fee of $5 per adult and $4 per senior. Children 16 and under are free. There are self-guided tours of the grounds and many of the buildings, including the intricately designed chapel and lieutenant's quarters. There is also an exposed archeological dig site to explore, as well as orchards, exhibits, live history demonstrations, heritage gardens, and a gift shop. In addition, the presidio chapel is a popular location for wedding ceremonies and receptions to be held.

If you're hoping to get a glimpse of Santa Barbara's storied past while on vacation, the Santa Barbara Presidio is the perfect place to start. Let the vacation rental experts at Paradise Retreats help you make sure you get the most out of your beach getaway by reserving one of their luxurious and comfortable properties for your stay.

By Oscar Vasquez / California Department of Parks and Recreation, Public Domain,