1. Did you know that our school has an Art Museum right on campus? The tour only lasts about 90 minutes but you can hop on and off all day if you’d like for $25 for adults. So yeah, there are plenty of things to do in Santa Barbara. If you want a quick overview of Santa Barbara, take the Santa Barbara Trolley. Knapp’s Castle. Darryl Brooks / Shutterstock. If you haven’t noticed at this point, Santa Barbara can be quite an expensive city to visit. Santa Barbara is a beautiful coastal town and a popular weekend destination in Southern California, known for its excellent beaches, parks, free attractions, family activities, day trips, beautiful wedding venues, restaurants, affordable hostels, breakfast spots, RV parks, and romantic Pacific Ocean views. Santa Barbara is sometimes referred to as the American Riviera thanks to the guaranteed beautiful weather and the stunning coastal and mountain scenery. Shoreline Park. Fun Things to do in Santa Barbara Known as the American Riviera , Santa Barbara is located about 2 hours north of Los Angeles and about 5 hours south of San Francisco. Paying a visit to the historical and ornate Santa Barbara County Courthouse is among the top things to do in Santa Barbara, California.. It is … 1. Shoreline Park. Visit the Art, Design & Architecture Museum right on campus! Below are 15 things to do in and around Santa Barbara. The area offers a beautiful coastal setting, nestled between the Santa Ynez mountains and the Pacific Ocean. The harbor is worth a visit, the seafood tantalizing, the mountains tranquil and the historical monuments are most definitely worth a look. You can certainly experience Santa Barbara without spending an obscene amount of money. Though Santa Barbara’s natural attractions tend to get the most attention, the city’s skyline is pretty impressive as well. Please note: In response to coronavirus/COVID-19, the UC Santa Barbara Visitor Center is closed indefinitely, and all campus tours and in-person Admission presentations are canceled. The 9 best things to do in Santa Barbara. While there are many more that I haven’t included, these are my favorite and most highly recommended by others! There are endless things to do in Santa Barbara including dozens of hikes, beaches, and activities. 7. 1. Here are some free yet no less enjoyable things to do in Santa Barbara. But it doesn’t have to be. Right next to the lagoon stairs and the colorful art wall lies an amazing museum! But if you want something a little more unusual to do in Santa Barabara, it can be tricky to find it. Source: Lux Blue / shutterstock. 21 Stunning Things to Do in Santa Barbara 1. Here are 10 FREE things to do around UC Santa Barbara for you to enjoy when you want to give your wallet a little break. Take a Trolley. Free Things to Do in Santa Barbara. 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