Destination guide

Santa Barbara County: Med-style on the California coast

Often described as the American Riviera, Santa Barbara County has a Mediterranean style, retaining the Spanish flair that was brought over by early settlers. Stay in Santa Barbara County vacation rentals and you can enjoy the cultural city, exploring art galleries, discovering local museums and enjoying wine tastings. Surrounded by mountains, you'll be close to many unforgettable hiking trails, taking you through dense forest and past lakes and waterfalls. The area is also surrounded by endless sandy beaches that are ideal for surfing or soaking up the Californian sunshine.

Things to do

Discover Santa Barbara County's Spanish influence

You can see signs of Santa Barbara's Spanish past all around you, with red-roofed white buildings giving the city a Mediterranean feel. Old Mission Santa Barbara is a classic example of a Spanish church, and is over 200 years old. Still home to Franciscan friars, the mission is decorated with Mediterranean-style tiles and historic Colonial features. Santa Barbara Historical Museum is also full of treasures from historic Santa Barbara, from Native American artifacts through to the 1980s social scene. Cases are full of clothes, decorative items and crafts, and on the walls are artworks that reflect the city's ever-changing landscape.


Wine tastings in Santa Barbara County

Many visitors to the area book Santa Barbara County vacation rentals so they can explore the local wine country. Made famous by the movie Sideways, Santa Barbara has a thriving wine scene, with over 100 wineries to explore. Grab a sidekick and enjoy driving past vine-covered rolling hills, stopping at rustic barns and grand stone houses that make up the local wine scene. Locally produced wines include light chardonnays and popular pinot noirs. If you don't want to worry about driving, try the Santa Barbara urban wine trail, which takes you through stylish downtown wineries for tastings and tapas.


Year-round California sunshine in Santa Barbara County

Santa Barbara County benefits from around 283 sunny days a year, so the odds are that you'll be soaking up the California sun. July and August are the hottest months, but not unbearably so, with temperatures settling at about 70 degrees. The winter months are mild and generally dry and sunny, so if you book a Santa Barbara County vacation rental during one of these off-peak times, you can still enjoy many outdoor activities.

Natural features

Desert trails and mountain hikes in Santa Barbara County

A large chunk of Santa Barbara County is covered by Los Padres National Forest. With areas of desert-like rocky land, as well as lush green forest and wilderness, there are plenty of different trails to explore. Discover the Rose Valley Falls, over 300-feet high with a steep trail that gives you views across the forest, or hike the 7 Falls, through rocky canyons and past serene streams. Santa Barbara County also offers long stretches of coastline, with lively sandy beaches close to the city, and rocky areas such as El Capitan State Beach, beloved by surfers.

Can I find a vacation rental around Santa Barbara County?

Yes, our 2019 property listings offer a large selection of 1,050 vacation rentals near Santa Barbara County. From 606 Houses to 175 Condos/Apartments, find the best place to stay with your family and friends to discover the Santa Barbara County area.

What are the most popular destinations to visit in Santa Barbara County?

There are many lovely places to stay for a holiday trip or just for a weekend in Santa Barbara County. From HomeAway travelers, the most popular destinations to visit are:

  • Santa Barbara: 953 vacation rentals
  • Carpinteria: 817 vacation rentals
  • Solvang: 159 vacation rentals
  • Montecito: 790 vacation rentals
  • Santa Ynez: 154 vacation rentals

And HomeAway offers you the chance to discover many other popular destinations in Santa Barbara County! Please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available in other popular destinations.

What are the main cities to discover in Santa Barbara County?

Whether you're traveling with family or friends, here are the cities with the largest selection of vacation rentals for a holiday trip or just for a weekend in Santa Barbara County:

  • Santa Barbara: 953 rentals
  • Carpinteria: 817 rentals
  • Solvang: 159 rentals
  • Montecito: 790 rentals
  • Santa Ynez: 154 rentals

For other cities, please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available.

Can I find easy-access vacation rentals when traveling by plane to Santa Barbara County?

Yes of course. Our owners offer a large selection of vacation rentals near airports. The airports with a large selection of vacation rentals in Santa Barbara County are:

  • Santa Ynez, CA (SQA): 182 vacation rentals
  • Santa Barbara Municipal Airport (SBA): 786 vacation rentals
  • Santa Maria Pub Cpt G Allan Hancock Airport (SMX): 206 vacation rentals

For other airports, please use our search bar to access the selection of vacation rentals available.

Near which points of interest can I spend my holidays in Santa Barbara County?

HomeAway offers a large selection of rentals near lovely places in Santa Barbara County. From HomeAway travelers, the most popular points of interest to stay for a holiday trip or just for a weekend are:

  • Carpinteria State Beach: 1,091 rentals
  • Rincon Beach Park: 1,160 rentals
  • Jalama Beach County Park: 19 rentals
  • Goleta Beach: 781 rentals
  • El Capitan State Beach: 541 rentals

But there are many other points of interest around Santa Barbara County listed on HomeAway where you can find your place to stay. Just write your wanted destination in our search bar and have a look at our selection.

Explore destinations around Santa Barbara County

Santa Barbara
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159 vacation rentals
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Santa Ynez
154 vacation rentals
Los Olivos
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Santa Maria
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Los Alamos
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Isla Vista
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Hope Ranch
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Mission Hills
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