If you have done something really clever and found yourself visiting a friend around Santa Barbara in the middle of the worst snowstorm on record for your Illinois town, props to you. Here are some things that you can do / see / eat in Santa Barbara and its environs:
1) Eat doughnuts at Spudnuts and Bagels in Goleta!
2) Eat delicious tacos at Los Agaves restaurant!
3) Buy fish at the Santa Barbara Fish Market (surprisingly hidden on the pier). Then cook it and eat it!
4) Visit Solvang, the Danish capital of America, and eat Danish pastries at Mortensen’s Bakery.
5) Enjoy breakfast at Cajun Kitchen Cafe.
6) Visit the Island Brewery Company in Carpinteria. Beer in your hand and a view of the ocean (as well as the Amtrak) – sounds like a good spring break!
7) Picnic at Sunstone Vineyards & Winery in Santa Ynez.
8) Go to the Ellwood Beach Butterfly Preserve in Santa Barbara County. Watch dogs bark at seals.
9) Hike the Rattlesnake Canyon trail. (Ignore those fallen trees – forge ahead where others falter!)
10) Grab some sushi and go have a picnic on the beach.
11) Keep your shoes on so you don’t get all tarred up while walking on the beach.
12) Visit the beach at the University of California Santa Barbara campus. Talk to the guy on the pier with the weird water wave measurement equipment to have your curiosity satisfied.
13) Go to Trader Joe’s. Eat all the free samples. Repeat.
14) Check out those red wood tress. Whoa!
15) Leave the lizards alone. They’ll be happier, you’ll be safer, it’s a good idea all around.
16) Visit the Living Old Mission in Santa Barbara and see where the lady from Island of the Blue Dolphins may or may not be buried.
17) Buy comics at Metro Entertainment, even though it never rains in Santa Barbara and you’ll have to wait to read them on the flight home to snow-landia.
18) Go to New Dragon Seafood Restaurant (B rating from the health inspectors!) in Chinatown in Los Angeles on your way back to the airport. While you’re in the neighborhood, buy a hat and drink an avocado milkshake, because life is short and Chinatown is awesome.
It was a very delicious trip. Props to EC, NT, LC, and QB for hosting our wonderful visit! :-)