Most Romantic Santa Barbara Activities

a-picture-of-state-street-by-a-santa-barbara-limo-tour-package-last-spring
Strolling State Street is an essential activity in S.B.

Ranked as one of America’s most romantic cities, the American Riviera is an ideal choice for many when picking a dating location. Which is also why so many order their dates with limo services in the Santa Barbara area or from another location, such as transportation to Santa Barbara from Los Angeles, Ventura, Orange County, and other areas in Southern California. With more than 690 eateries, restaurants and bakeries, the American Riviera is also one of the most restaurant- and bar dense communities in the country. Furthermore, its charming Spanish architecture including the iconic red-tile roofs are a distinctive romantic attribute to the city. With its beautiful SoCal beaches, palm-lined boulevards and avenues, and the rolling hills of the Santa Ynez Mountains in the back, the American Riviera is an obvious choice for many couples looking for a romantic getaway. The city’s most visited tourist attraction, the Santa Barbara Mission, was founded in the late 1780’s and is one of California’s most historic colonial treasures. Few minutes from the mission is where we find the famous botanic garden, an over sixty acre park with representations from all types of endemic Californian flora. Make sure to bring your date by the Pritchett Bench for the most relaxing, charming and romantic experiences.

a-lady-in-a-vineyard-on-santa-barbara-wine-tours-2016-experienceOnly thirty minutes from downtown S.B. is where we find the rolling green hills and vineyards of the Santa Ynez Valley, maybe Southern California’s most popular destination for wine tours. Easily combined with romantic outings in town, the vineyards and wine country of S.B. County is a must see for everyone, and maybe particularly for dating couples. Before leaving town, do not forget to make a visit to the Moreton Bay Fig Tree, which is the largest Australian tree in America with branches covering over 165 feet (easily covering over a thousand people on hot summer days.) A local sailor came ashore with its seed in mid 1870’s and handed the seed to a local girl, who then proceeded to plant it where it still stands today. A remarkable story and a beloved landmark. For 19th- and 20th century art, bring your date to the Santa Barbara Museum of Art to see some beautiful paintings and artifact items. Or as many ask our limousine service when booking their trip: “What is the most romantic S.B. beach?”. While the West Beach and maybe particularly the East Beach are the most visited beaches in the area, they are definitely not the finest beaches on the American Riviera. Stretching all the way from Montecito to Stearns Wharf is where we find East Beach, by far ing most visited beach in the area. For dating couples looking for a more secluded and romantic location, the Leadbetter Beach is a sheltered and secluded beach which is great for lone swimming or picnicking. Alternatively, one can check out the Mesa Lane Beach or Hendry’s Beach for some of Southern California’s most idyllic stretches of sand beach.

west-beach-santa-barbara-from-stearns-wharf-after-a-limo-trip-by-local-limousine-services-luxuryAn array of outdoorsy activities are available. Go by the Visitor’s Center to pick up your hiking maps before venturing on to for example the Seven Falls Trail, one of the most popular trails in town. Furthermore, the historic Chumash Painted Cave State Historic Park includes thousands-of-year-old pictographs and petroglyphs, and is also appearing on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places because of its tremendous historic value. Many Santa Barbara limo passengers decide to stop by here on their way to or from the Santa Ynez vineyards. Clientele looking for hotels in the area have many choices. Some of our most romantic picks would be the El Capitan Canyon, El Encanto Hotel and Garden Villas, Hotel Oceana, Inn of the Spanish Garden, Simpson House Inn, and the Upham Hotel and Country House. Surrounding areas are also home to a variety of great hotel options, for instance the Bacara Resort in Goleta, Inn on Summer Hill in Summerland, or the San Ysidro Ranch or Four Seasons Biltmore located in Montecito, CA. Wine tours to the Santa Maria- and Santa Ynez Valleys are guaranteed to be a romantic getaway, but even more so if combined with a romantic layover in wine country! Our favorites here include the Union Hotel in Los Alamos, Santa Ynez Inn in the town of Santa Ynez, Fess Parker’s Wine Country Inn in Los Olivos, as well as the Ballard Inn in Ballard and Alisal Guest Ranch in Solvang. Santa Barbara’s breathtaking wine-country isn’t just famous for its great wine varietals and natural beauty, but also an increasing number of great restaurants are finding their way to SoCal’s vineyards. Some of our clientele’s favorites are the Brothers Restaurant at Mattei’s Tavern in Los Olivos, Chef Rick’s in Santa Ynez, the Nuuva Restaurant & Café in Ballard, as well as the Hitching Post in Buellton.

santa-barbara-architecture-style-unique-limousineHowever, venturing out on a wine-tasting tour is far from required for fine dining in the S.B. area. As a matter of fact, many renting our party bus services for their trips to the vineyards actually prefer staying in town for their meals prior or after visiting the wine country. The Beachside Bar Café located in Goleta Beach Park might be one of the county’s most romantic diners where you can enjoy a beautiful meal on the beach surrounded by beachgoers, surfers and a beautiful view of the Pacific Ocean. Closer to town is where we find amongst others the magnificent Wine Cask on Anacapa Street, a great spot for dining and wine pairings. Alternatively, couples often head to the Deep Sea Tasting Room on the Stearns Wharf for some great wine tastings surrounded by picturesque ocean-views. For some excellent French cuisine, we’ve even had airport transfers going by Bouchon on West Victoria Street for their great local wine tasting offers and tasty meals. Consistently ranked as one of the city’s greatest restaurants, Citronelle on Cabrillo Boulevard will not let you down. Not too into French cuisine? Try the Italian Emilio’s Ristorante, also located on Cabrillo. Many of our limousine service clientele love Epiphany, an elegant restaurant on Victoria Street owned by Kevin Costner and his wife. For Santa Barbara limo customers looking to dine by Montecito, we would recommend Plow and Angel Bistro on San Ysidro Lane, one of the area’s first restaurants specializing on gourmet dining.

stearns-wharf-taken-on-a-santa-barbara-wine-tasting-tour-in-2016From historic missions, white sandy beaches and among the highest density of eateries, the American Riviera might be one of the most romantic destinations you and your partner can do. Even more so when accompanied by chauffeured limousine or party bus services. Whether you are visiting the Santa Barbara Bowl or the Museum of Art or anything in between, you can trust us for a timely pickup and arrival with the utmost professional drivers and luxurious vehicles. Whether you are heading to the iconic zoo or one of the city’s many outdoor music venues, any event can be made even better when arriving in luxury stretch limousines or party bus options by your own preference. Even local airport transfers from/to the municipal airport, LAX or any other SoCal airport can be made less stressful and more stylish by reserving your own chauffeured vehicle of choice. Contact us today for an exclusive price match guarantee and to learn more about how Yelpers may qualify for even lower rates.

Going out on town for your date? See our Santa Barbara Nightlife Guide!

Santa Barbara limousine on Stearns Wharf in Santa Barbara

 

Bachelorette parties can be so fun!

bachelorette-party-with-a-limousine-santa-barbara-limo-service-june-2016Tired of the usual outings? How about the unusual? Check out the Grapeseed Company, where you can make a custom scent. They sell oils, soaps, lotions, and such. Be sure to pre-book for your private party. The Painted Cabernet has has great reviews and can be very fun to do with friends. Here you can paint your own master piece of art! If you want to be even more different, head over to the Santa Barbara Zoo and compare yourself to real party animals! That is definitely unusual and untraditional for your bachelor- or bachelorette party.

Want a unique dinner? Reserve a fire-pit table at Cafe Zaytoon. It’s a really cool atmosphere… there is belly dancing on weekend nights and great Mediterranean food. Another spot for dinner with high ratings for atmosphere and great cocktails is the Blush Restaurant & Lounge. The location brags that it IS the top bachelorette party location for Santa Barbara limousine customers. Our exclusive wine tours to the Santa Maria- and Santa Ynez Valleys are also a pick where you cannot go wrong.

There is always the strong cocktails and fun crowd at Joe’s Cafe.

limos-in-Santa-Barbara-limousine-and-LAX-sedanSome fun beach restaurants for daytime food and drinks:

  • Shoreline Beach Cafe at Leadbetter Beach
  • East Beach Grill at East Beach
  • Brophy Brothers at the Harbor
  • Beachside Bar Cafe at Goleta Beach
  • Brophy Brothers

Like kayaking? If you take off from the Santa Barbara Harbor, there will be no need to fight the swells like at the beach. You can cruise through the harbor, check out all the yachts, get some exercise, and check out the sea life. You should  definitely visit the SB Sailing Center. Many of our wine tours clients love the local wine-tasting venues along the coastal American Rivera, including the Deep Sea Tasting Room on Stearns Wharf. Here you can sip wines while enjoying an unmatched view of the ocean. Others prefer the romantic sunset cruises, where you can enjoy champagne and a dinner on the sea. Many people fall in love with the Channel Islands National Park when they visit the incredible islands just miles of our coast. We’ve even had LAX sedan customers flying in from abroad to head straight to these islands for camping, hiking, kayaking, and other recreational activities.

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How about a sunset dining cruise?

Don’t like the water? Consider taking a nice hike. For out-of-towners, we would suggest Inspiration Point. It is a pretty easy to find with a well marked trail. It’s a popular trail and there will be others in case you get a bit lost. On the trail you cross a small creek, see a huge variety of plant life and end with a great view of the city. Also worth checking out for locals and visitors alike is the Chumash Painted Cave State Historic Park, a cave with Native-American pictograms dating back thousands of years.

If you’re anti-sweat, just call us to book any Santa Barbara limousine and we can take you and your party to shop. State Street is the city’s main street and also a great spot which can keep you busy most of the day. You can cool down with some ice cream at McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams. Many of our client’s favorite is the peppermint stick, but many others swear the island coconut flavor is best! State Street is home to a huge numbers of restaurants, bars, shops and cafes. Maybe the most popular destination on State Street is the SB Bowl. Check their itineraries for upcoming shows, and make sure to reserve ahead of time to enjoy a dinner along with your show.

If you go to the Public Market, we HIGHLY recommend trying a cupcake at Enjoy Cupcakes. Trust us!

Don’t forget to use our LAX sedan, SUV-, bus- or limo service to retrieve your out-of-town guests from the airport! Great way to welcome them and start the experience off right. Whether your visitors fly in from the local airport, Burbank, L.A.X. or any other Southern California airport, you can trust our services to be timely and professional.

4 Magnificent Islands off the SoCal Coast


California-Channel-Islands-limo-in-Santa-BarbaraThe Golden State is home to dozens of islands in all shapes, sizes, and natural beauty. From historic Alcatraz, the quaint neighborhoods of Balboa – to our own offshore National Park: the California Channel Islands. Southern California has an island for everyone. What’s even better than spending the day on a Pacific island? Combining the trip with wine tours or a Santa Barbara limo pickup to your place of embarkment. Let our Santa Barbara- and Ventura limousine service present our top 4 islands of the Southern California coast.


Anacapa Island

Being the most accessible part of the Channel Islands National Park, sometimes called “America’s Galapagos”, Anacapa is an easy getaway for us in Southern California. As the smallest of the eight Channel Islands, Anacapa’s 700 acres and two-mile trail system is an easier way to check out the National Park. Just twelve miles off the coast of Port Hueneme, Anacapa is also the closest to the mainland. Our Ventura party bus recently chauffeured a big group of teenagers to the island, and told us this was their third time to the park. Our driver came back and told us about everything from “sea lion fights by the sea happens all the time”, and also happened to have visited the island many times for its great cliffs, untouched nature, great hiking, photographing, canoeing, scuba-diving, and also native fauna and flora. Many in our clientele have also told us about the great whale-migrations happening between February to March. At times there many gray whales spotted here on their way south towards Baja California. Usual visits here lasts from two to three hours, which is just enough time to explore the island. The island also has a unique history having been inhabited by the Chumash people for thousands of years. This island and any of the other islands compromising the Channel Islands National Park can be visited through the Island Packers, which has ferries departing from both Ventura and Oxnard. For sedans, limos, SUV’s or buses to the island, contact us today! We’ve even had tourists calling in to order a limousine or LAX sedan service from LAX and straight to Anacapa to explore the national park. We’ve also had tired campers calling for Malibu wine tours upon their return.

Balboa Island

limousine-Agoura-Hills-limo-service-2016Famous for its luxurious beachfront houses and many shops, Orange County’s Balboa Island has attracted hundreds of thousands of visitors and vacationers for over a century. Beautifully located in the Newport Harbor, many have mistakingly assumed Balboa to be its own independent village, although it is part of the bigger City of Newport Beach. Accessible by both bridges and ferry services (the Balboa Island Ferry), it is a kid-friendly and picturesque island-village definitely worth visiting. Many renting an LA- or Ventura limousine are heading then to the ferry station near the Fun Zone for a full-day trip over to the island. For dating couples, the $1 ferry ride is a great way of adding to your special occasion. And we get it. Why go on Santa Ynez wine tours when you can taste wine under the stars on this beautiful island? Boasting California’s one and only auto ferry, bringing your car – or Ventura limousine – along is also an option here. The island is home to many small-town shops, miles of sandy beaches, cafes, restaurants, and estate homes. Make sure to check out the locally made Balboa Bar or the frozen bananas for an exclusive Balboa-experience. The village’s main street, the European-style 1 ½-mile promenade is a must to see, particularly combined with a world-famous Balboa frozen banana. An alternative or additional trip so often reserved for an LA- or Santa Barbara limo is Balboa Peninsula. This oceanfront peninsula is home to expensive estates and larger craft harbors, as well as numerous restaurants and cafes. Also boasting the most visited tourist attraction and the most beautiful beaches in the City of Newport Beach, a visit to the Balboa Peninsula is popular for tourists and other reserving our LA- and LAX sedan service. We recently transferred LAX sedan service clients here as well, for a hotel night to be spent by the seaside.

Santa Cruz Island

limousine-Ventura-limo-serviceOften overlooked, Santa Cruz is the largest island in the state of California. As Anacapa, Santa Cruz is also uninhabited as a part of the National Park. But that doesn’t stop our LA- and Ventura limousine and party bus customers from venturing out here to explore. Home to numerous species found nowhere else on Earth – including the Island Fox, the Island Scrub-Jay and re-introduced Bald Eagles. Besides all the great wildlife, this particular island has a lot more to offer visitors. With its untouched wilderness found nowhere else in the state, the island is also a popular camping spot. We’ve had full vehicles – from a Santa Barbara limo to an LA party bus – packed with camping equipment for people who are looking to camp on the island. Here you can see among the biggest sea-caves in the world and learn about the ancient people that once lived on this island for thousands of years. Many riding with our Ventura limousine vehicles have told us about the various hiking trails found on the island. With ferries from Island Packers landing in two areas, Scorpion Anchorage and at Prisoner’s Harbor, there’s a larger trail system waiting to be explored. One hike definitely worth checking out is to Potato Harbor on the northern part of the island. Potato Harbor is a gorgeous stretch of beach, often visited by seals and sea lions, while Cavern Point is a popular place for sighting the great whale migrations. Between the months of Feb.-April, Party bus clients have also told us about the amazing bloom of the island’s endemic flowers covering the island. The Pelican Bay Trail offers the best chances of witnessing more native flora than anywhere else, although varying because of variations in rain and temperatures. The relatively fast one hour ferry ride from the mainland to Santa Cruz is often accompanied with the observation of various sea mammals and birds, including oftentimes dolphins, sea-lions, eagles, pelicans, whales, and more. Want an unforgettable canoe experience? Check out Scorpion Bay, famous for being an incredible place for kayaking or canoeing. Prefer a longer hike? A favorite for many LA- and Santa Barbara limo clients is the seven mile hike to Smuggler’s Cove from the landing by Scorpion Canyon. Prefer another method of transportation to the island? Although there’s no LAX sedan service needed for LAX travels, Channel Islands Aviation flies out of Camarillo Airport. If you are looking to see more exotic animals, book safari wine tours with us to Malibu Family Wines!

Catalina Island

Nicknamed the Island of Romance, Santa Catalina Island is the California island that has it all. We take more LA- and Santa Barbara limo clients to this island than any other Californian island. Here you’ll find everything from beautiful hotels, golf courses, bars and nightlife, as well as gorgeous beaches and protected nature areas with a magnificent native wildlife and flora. Reachable by ferry and by airplane, Catalina is home to two villages: the main town of Avalon and the much smaller Two Harbors. In between is where we find the Airport in the Sky, which is located the island’s tallest mountain. Many customers looking for limos in Ventura or Camarillo love the short but exciting plane rides with Channel Islands Aviation from the Camarillo Airport. With ferries leaving from Los Angeles as well as Long Beach and Orange County, Catalina has become the most accessible of the Channel Islands Archipelago. Just twenty-six miles with boat from the mainland, famously mentioned in the song “26 Miles” by the Four Preps, Catalina is an easy getaway with much to offer. A favorite for many locals and even tourists using our LAX sedan service, spending a night in Avalon is a must for anyone visiting Southern California. At Catalina you can not only experience the great outdoors (over ninety percent of the island is protected nature areas), but the town of Avalon also boasts some great options for accommodation, dining as well as many activities. Being the only developed island of the archipelago, Catalina is also the only California island to offer a larger variety of day- and night activities for visitors. Recent clients looking for limos in Ventura for a ride to the Catalina ferry station told us: “It is the island that has it all. We visit for the underwater submarine tour and beaching at Descanso Beach.” Others have told us about the great safari tours from Avalon, where you can spot all kinds of wild animals, including buffalos, eagles, the native Island Fox, and many more. You may want to rent a golf cart or bike for a great way of exploring the areas surrounding Avalon. While a day trip might be enough on some of the other Channel Islands, Catalina is definitely a place worth staying overnight!

In what ever way you’d like to experience a backdoor Pacific island – by plane or boat, for nature or hotel night, – our Santa Barbara limo services are your natural choice in choosing transportation to the ferries. We have offered luxury Santa Barbara- and Ventura limousine services, as well as top rated Malibu- and Santa Ynez wine tours and party bus transportation, for more than twenty years in the making. For your next visit to the islands, consider reserving one of our limos or party bus rentals to begin your trip in style! Whether to visit a Pacific island, head out on wine tours, or “just” for the traditional limousine adventure, contact Blackhawk Limousine & Transportation today!

Did you know scenes from the movie Commando (1985) were filmed at the Channel Islands? Check out our Guide to Best Movies Filmed in Santa Barbara!

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