Santa Barbara
Culture & History

Enter your dates to find available activities

Our most recommended Santa Barbara Culture & History

Santa Barbara: Electric Bike City Tour

1. Santa Barbara: Electric Bike City Tour

Discover the best bike routes, historical landmarks, and viewpoints of Santa Barbara on an electric bike with an expert guide. Choose between a customizable private tour or a shared group tour where a route is decided by your guide. Start with an easy stroll along the scenic Cabrillo bike path and quickly venture into the artsy area of Santa Barbara. Check out the delicious wine and dine culture of this area. Let your tour guide show you the must-see historic buildings in the heart of downtown. As you bike through downtown, enjoy a safe and spacious bike ride up and down the energetic State Street Promenade allocated for bike and pedestrian traffic only. After downtown, your guide might have a few secret gems that he or she will show you before heading back along the waterfront. The finale of this tour will take you through the bike path that winds through the Santa Barbara Harbor and along the boardwalk back to the bike shop.

Santa Barbara: 1.5-Hour Harbor Kayak Tour

2. Santa Barbara: 1.5-Hour Harbor Kayak Tour

Launch from the sand of Santa Barbara’s West Beach and follow your guide along Santa Barbara’s famous surf spot, the Sandspit. Admire panoramic views of the Waterfront, Santa Ynez Mountains, the Channel Islands, the Riviera, Stearns Wharf, and more. Paddle through the calm waters of Santa Barbara's harbor and enjoy views of sailboats, yachts, and fishing vessels. Learn valuable insight from your guide into the local landscape, topography, wildlife, and history of the harbor, as well as the best places to enjoy a fresh-caught meal.

From Santa Barbara: All-Inclusive Wine Tasting Tour & Lunch

3. From Santa Barbara: All-Inclusive Wine Tasting Tour & Lunch

Enjoy a memorable day exploring California's famous wine culture and take off on a fun-filled, cultural tour of some of California's finest wineries, each with a character as rich and individual as the wines they produce. Leave your Santa Barbara-area hotel at 10:00 AM aboard a spacious custom shuttle. Throughout the day, stop at 4 different wineries to get an insider's look into wine-making and wine-tasting while sampling a full selection of wines at each of the various wineries. Pause during the day for a delicious picnic lunch in a scenic winery setting catered by one of Santa Barbara's top lunch restaurants. Santa Barbara Wine Country offers more than 120 wineries, and this tour supplier is one of the few companies that does not limit tours to a small portion of these. Instead, your day is flexible and takes into account your preferences in wine and scenery, as well as any special events or offerings at the wineries. In addition to the exciting tour, you will receive your own Value Passport that will enable you to get great discounts on a variety of top-quality wines that you may wish to purchase.

California Highlights Express: 3-Day Tour from Los Angeles

4. California Highlights Express: 3-Day Tour from Los Angeles

This 3-day tour includes highlights of the Golden State, such as Santa Barbara, Solvang, the famous Pacific Coast Highway, Carmel, San Francisco, and Yosemite National Park. Day 1: Monday Departing north, travel along the spectacular and scenic California Coast to Santa Barbara. Visit a Spanish Mission and learn how these religious outposts were key in the development of the entire region. Continue to Solvang, a quaint Danish community, and browse the local shops. Your trip continues along Highway 1 through Big Sur to charming Carmel, home to actor Clint Eastwood. Enjoy some free time to stroll through town before heading on to Silicon Valley for overnight. Overnight: Santa Clara – La Quinta Inn & Suites Day 2: Tuesday See for yourself why San Francisco is considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Start your day at the Fisherman’s Wharf with a cruise on the world famous San Francisco Bay, under the Golden Gate Bridge and around the notorious Alcatraz Island. Visit Pier 39 for a leisurely lunch and a peek at the sea lions before an afternoon tour that takes in all the city’s famous landmarks, including the Golden Gate Bridge, Union Square, Chinatown, and the magnificent Nob Hill neighborhood, home to the rich and famous. The tour ends with a night view of the city from the Bay Bridge. Overnight: Modesto – Best Western Palm Court Inn (In Winter: Monterey/Holiday Inn hotel) Day 3: Wednesday Today’s route goes through farmlands of the Joaquin Valley to Yosemite National Park. This 1,200 square mile wonderland of forests, lakes, and waterfalls is located in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Stop at El Capitan, Bridal-Veil Falls, and the Half Dome before walking to the Yosemite Visitor Center to reach the highest waterfalls in North America, the 730-meter-high Yosemite Falls. In the winter, depart south to route no 1, for a visit to the world famous Hearst Castle, built by the newspaper baron William Randolph Hearst. Tour the famous house filled with antiques and see why the castle served as a playground for the rich and famous for the first half of the 20th century.

Santa Barbara Amazing Scavenger Hunt Adventure

5. Santa Barbara Amazing Scavenger Hunt Adventure

Looking for a way to turn Santa Barbara into a giant game board?   Urban Adventure Quest has created an interactive scavenger hunt that combines the fun of the Amazing Race with a three-hour sightseeing tour of Santa Barbara.  Guided from any smart phone, groups make their way among well-known and overlooked gems of the city, solving clues and completing challenges while learning local history Your amazing scavenger hunt adventure will start at the famous Sterns Whart and take you from beautiful ocean views to the downtown art, architecture and historic sites of the city. Your scavenger hunt route will show you the hidden historic gems of Santa Barbara and uncover the city's secrets. So enjoy one of the most beautiful seaside towns without a flight to the Mediterranean. Play the game, see the sights, and experience Santa Barbara in a whole new way.

Los Angeles: Santa Barbara Wineries & Vineyards

6. Los Angeles: Santa Barbara Wineries & Vineyards

Enjoy a private and customizable full-day guided wine or beer tasting tour from Los Angeles to Santa Barbara. Admire the highlights of Santa Barbara like the Old Mission of Santa Barbara, Stearns Wharf, and the Santa Barbara Harbor.  Be picked up from the comfort of your accommodation in Los Angeles and sit back and relax on the drive in a spacious and air-conditioned Mercedes high top Sprinter van. Take in views of gorgeous vineyards, sweeping coastlines, and mountain scenery.  Have the option of going on the suggested itinerary which includes sampling local wine at countryside winery in the morning before heading to the coastal city of Santa Barbara to admire its Spanish colonial buildings with red-tile roofs. Stop to try some fine Californian wine while overlooking the ocean, followed by another tasting at the historic Presidio park, or head to the Funk Zone brewery to try some tasty craft beers. Craft your own unique itinerary to sights like the suburb of Montecito, or the former military post of Presidio. Choose to see sights like the Old Mission of Santa Barbara and the storied wooden Stearns Wharf. Have the option of viewing the yachts in the Santa Barbara Harbor, or visiting the boutique shops and hip cafes on State Street. Return to your accommodation in Los Angeles at the end of your tour. 

From Los Angeles: 7-Day Golden Experience Tour

7. From Los Angeles: 7-Day Golden Experience Tour

Day 1: Los Angeles - Santa Barbara - 17 Mile Drive/Carmel or Solvang/San Francisco Depart north from Los Angeles up the spectacular California coast to the first stop in Santa Barbara. Visit a Spanish mission and learn how these religious outposts were key in the development of the entire region. Summer:Head north to the world-famous 17 mile drive (part of route #1), where you will get to see the spectacular California coast line up-close. After your visit, head to the town of Carmel, home to the actor Clint Eastwood. Enjoy some free time to stroll through the town before heading onto Silicon Valley for an overnight. Overnight: SpringHill Suites by Marriott Oakland Airport Winter:Continue to Solvang, a quaint Danish community to browse in the local shops. Enjoy the Danish-style architecture while browse in the local shops and restaurants. After our lunch break, we head north through Silicon Valley before departing to reach our hotel for overnight. Overnight: SpringHill Suites by Marriott Oakland Airport    Day 2: San Francisco - Bay Cruise - Golden Gate Bridge - Chinatown Today, understand why San Francisco is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Start your tour at the Fisherman’s Wharf with a cruise in the world-famous bay under the Golden Gate Bridge and around the notorious Alcatraz Island. Return to Pier 39 for a leisurely lunch before an afternoon tour that will take in all the city’s famous landmarks including the Golden Gate Bridge, Union Square, Chinatown and Nob Hill. Your tour will end with a night view of the city from the Bay Bridge. Overnight: Modesto – Best Western Palm Court Inn.   Day 3: Modesto - Yosemite Summer Route: Head east through the farmlands of the Joaquin Valley to Yosemite National Park. This 1,200 square mile wonderland of forests, lakes and waterfalls is located in the Sierra Nevada. Stop at El Capitan, Bridal-Veil Falls and Half Dome to continue for a walk from the Yosemite Visitor Center to reach one of the highest waterfalls in North America (730 meters) Yosemite Falls. Winter Route: Start the day with a tour of Monterrey to include the wharf and Cannery Row. After your tour, depart to the south for a visit to the world-famous Hearst Castle. Built by the newspaper baron William Randolph Hearst, tour the famous house filled with antiques and see why the castle served as a playground for the rich and famous for the first half of the 20th-century. In the evening, drive south towards Las Vegas. Overnight at the Comfort Suites Stevenson Ranch. Day 4: Stevenson Ranch - Las Vegas Today’s route is east through the dessert and Death Valley to arrive at the gambling capital of the world: Las Vegas. Stop for lunch at the outlet mall in Barstow, which is filled with all the famous brand names like, Levi’s, Nike, Reebok, Timberland, Ralph Lauren and more. In the evening, take a tour of the strip to see some of the truly amazing hotels and fantasies that are built in the middle of the desert such as Caesar’s Palace, Luxor, Mirage, Paris, Venetian, Bellagio, New York New York, Treasure Island and more. Finish off the evening at one of the many shows or try your hand at one of the many casinos - who knows, maybe lady luck will be smiling on you tonight. Overnight: Linq Hotel. Day 5: Las Vegas - Grand Canyon - Lake Powell  Start the day traveling southeast through the desert and through the Navajo Indian Reservation before you come to the South Bank of one of the seven wonders of the world - the Grand Canyon. Tour along the south bank and learn how throughout the years the Colorado River carved its way down to the sea and created the wonderland for geologists. After lunch, continue along the canyon east stopping at some of the many Indian market places to browse the handmade arts and crafts. Overnight – Quality Inn View of Lake Powell.   Day 6: Antelope Canyon - Bryce Canyon After breakfast, depart for the Lower Antelope Canyon and visit the spectacular dunes created by the wind, water, and sand. Then head west to Bryce Canyon home to the most amazing natural sculptures of the world. This tour will take you to see amazing rock and sand sculptures honed to perfection over thousands of years of rain, wind, and sunshine. Experience the unique changing of the colors during the sunset from one of the vista points in the park (may change due to changing sunset times).  After the visit, head towards the town of Kanab. Overnight: Days Inn. On certain departures, the tour will continue to Cedar City for an overnight at the Comfort Inn, Cedar City.  Day 7: Zion Park - Las Vegas After breakfast, head into Zion Park. This park got its name from the Mormons that settled in the area. They gave it this name after claiming that visiting the park is like a religious experience, the majesty of the mountains and silence of the wilderness make you feel like you have been transported to another place. Tour the park and enjoy a short walking trail along the Virgin River that runs through the park, before leaving this amazing area for an early evening arrival in Las Vegas. Option for a late night return to Los Angeles.  

Santa Barbara: Craft Beer Walking Tour

8. Santa Barbara: Craft Beer Walking Tour

Head to three unique craft breweries and enjoy tastings at each one. Learn about the history of each brewery, and listen to fun cultural and historical facts about the beautiful city.See the brewmasters drawing their brew inspirations from Santa Barbara and beyond. Explore downtown hotspots, which will include a visit to the bustling Funk Zone and the excitement of the State Street scene. Enjoy plenty of beer tasting choices and get the option to purchase lunch featuring fresh local California cuisine as you sip along the way. Experience the liveliest and most interesting beer crawl in paradise. Come get your beer on and learn about Santa Barbara along the way!

Santa Barbara: Scavenger Hunt Walking Tour

9. Santa Barbara: Scavenger Hunt Walking Tour

Enjoy a guided walking tour of beautiful and interesting parts of downtown Santa Barbara while following clues on your smartphone and solving interesting puzzles along the way. Play with your group as the game guides you through the city. Score points for correct answers and try to get a high score on the leaderboard. See major attractions as well as less-known gems of Santa Barbara on this unique interactive tour. Work together with your group to solve the 22 challenges on the scavenger hunt as you walk approximately 2 miles. Play any time that fits your schedule. There is no in-person guide you have to wait for. Explore downtown Santa Barbara California at your own pace. See the bustling State Street, the historic Spanish Presidio, De La Guerra Plaza, the Old Lobero Opera House, and many interesting and lesser-known sights. Enjoy fun challenges with family and friends that are perfect for all ages.

Santa Barbara: 3-Hour Cocktail and History Walking Tour

10. Santa Barbara: 3-Hour Cocktail and History Walking Tour

Get an insider's view of Santa Barbara on this fun, guided walking tour. Learn about Santa Barbara's history, architecture, and pop culture, all while enjoying cocktails and snacks at boutique bars. This cultural tour includes two cocktail tastings and one brewery stop, two of which will feature mouth-watering snacks to please your palette. All of the special cocktails, beverages, and food included in the tour are pre-selected, historically significant, and perfectly complement the tour. You’ll love what the mixologists and chefs have in store for you. It’s a celebratory way to get the lay of the land, learn about Santa Barbara’s rich history, and start an evening off right.

Frequently asked questions about Santa Barbara Culture & History

What are other things to do than Culture & History that are worth visiting in Santa Barbara?

The other unmissable things to do in Santa Barbara are:

Which Santa Barbara Culture & History are taking additional COVID-19 precautions?

Other Sightseeing Options in Santa Barbara

Want to discover all there is to do in Santa Barbara? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Santa Barbara

Overall rating

4.1 / 5

based on 26 reviews

Took a day trip from LA to SB with a friend and we had the best time kayaking! We booked a private tour and the two of us took a great tour around the harbor with our awesome guide, Paige. She was really fun and energetic as well as knowledgeable about the local flora and fauna and history of Santa Barbara. Spending a few hours on the water learning about the city and seeing the beautiful sights was a great way to spend the day. I would absolutely recommend this to anyone looking for a unique way to experience Santa Barbara.

Tour guide Melissa was great! My friend and I took a girls trip to Santa Barbara and had a great time walking around the city, drinking local wines, and tasting a few delicious local chocolates. We even got a bonus olive oil and vinegar tasting! Melissa told us some history about some notable places in downtown which was cool to learn about too. She’s very personable and gives a great tour. I would definitely recommend if you’re looking for a fun way to explore SB!

I really enjoyed this tour. Tour guide, Melissa, is very informative and has a friendly and fun demeanor. There was more informative historical information than had been mentioned on the description, which added to the overall satisfaction of this tour. The wine/chocolate venues were top notch. The olive oil visit was also an added treat. My friends and I had a great visit in Santa Barbara on this tour.

Highly recommend! SO fun, and a great way to see all the hidden gems of the city up close. Our guide Dale was amazing! His knowledge of Santa Barbara is extensive and is only surpassed by his love for the community. He went above and beyond making sure that we were safe and comfortable ( he even had extra windbreakers for us!). We absolutely loved everything about this tour! Do it!!!!

It was a really good tour with a little bit of everything