Summer Vacation 2017: Santa Barbara, California

I can’t believe summer is nearly over already. Where did the time go?!?! I guess I will stare at these pics from our summer vacation to help prolong summer as long as possible (I am really excited about fall too but for now, let’s enjoy the sun!).

If you have ever been then you already know how gorgeous it is; it is nick named the American Riviera. It is a popular weekend getaway spot for the rich and famous and even home to some of the rich and famous (ahem, Oprah). The sights and bites make it easy to see why.

Our vacation was actually a wedding, reunion, and vacation all in one. The hubby is from SB so when we got the invitation to attend the wedding of one of his childhood besties we decided to extend the stay and enjoy some time with family and friends. Hope you enjoy the recap and if you plan a trip to SB in the future feel free to reach out for suggestions.

First a quick recap of the wedding which was a beach wedding with the reception at a popular events space in Carpinteria, CA. I didn’t take pictures at the ceremony (sorry) but here are some of the highlights from the reception.

I loved the color scheme they chose. What you don’t see are the adorable chandeliers that they had hanging throughout the venue. So adorable!

I only took pictures of the salad course for some reason. I was probably too excited to get on the dance floor (true story). I do recall enjoying this panzanella salad!

Whenever we come back to SB the hubs usually requests a visit to the zoo. It is probably the prettiest zoo you will ever go to. You can take a nice leisure stroll through the hillside while checking out the animals and the California plant life.

After the zoo we went to have a brew and bite in the new Funk Zone. It is like the one stop shop for California wines and micro brews. I found a brewery that had a dog as a mascot, Lama Dog, obvious choice.

The tacos are from a small restaurant in the tap room called Nook. They had tri-tip tacos as a special and since we were in the home of tri-tip we couldn’t pass these up. Tri-tip is a huge fave but hard to find on the east coast, if you go out west make sure to get some!

One night we enjoyed the most amazing meal made by our dear friend AJ who works at a very popular sushi spot in Downtown SB called Arigato. He reserved us a seat at the sushi bar and passed amazing dish after amazing dish. I am sad he doesn’t live closer so that we can enjoy his creations every day. Also, he’s a Jiu Jitsu instructor so if you are in need of a great meal and jiu jitsu lesson he’s your guy. Tell him I sent you.

I absolutely loved this Toro Tuna Belly (below)! Can this be in my life always?

I ate a lot of other great food during our vacation, mostly tacos and seafood. Somehow tacos and/or seafood made it in to at least one meal during our trip. Here are some of the faves.

Jeannine’s is a popular bakery and breakfast spot. We went here one of my first visits to SB so it is kind of a tradition now. I had a Chorizo frittata full of veggies.

Bouillabaisse is all of my favorite things in one dish. Give me all the shellfish and calamari. Thank you!

McConnell’s ice cream is a local fave, they even served it at the wedding!

When we weren’t eating we were relaxing and enjoying the break.

My in-laws have a pretty nice layout with a pool! I probably spent every afternoon poolside and as a result came home with a pretty substantial tan haha. Ah, paradise!

Can this be my house please?

I am gonna end the recap with a picture of me and Arthur, the ring bearer, from the wedding. Dogs were pretty much a constant while on vacation and I made sure to hug them all!


  1. Just got back to Pgh. (Slippery Rock actually) after a couple days at the OTHER ocean–Virginia Beach to be exact, where my son lives. My dad’s sister & her family lived in Carpinteria so as a youngster I visited there several times to visit my west coast cousins. Your vacation recap was so fun to read and look at!

    1. I am also a fan of the east coast beaches, glad you got to have some time away! I am sure you found Carpinteria to be lovely as a youngster, my first visit was when I was young too because my mom grew up out there so I have been a number of times. You should plan a visit soon!

      1. One summer when we visited Carpinteria, there had been a recent oil spill (we didn’t know). When we got out of romping around in the ocean, our bathing suits were covered with black splotches of inky oil. It did not come out. 🙁

  2. Beautiful recap of your Santa Barbara visit. Waiting for your next trip out west. It was fun, but way too short. The pool, TJ and Wrigs miss you!!

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