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Where to stay in Santa Barbara

Your Guide to Santa Barbara Hotels

When your destination is one of the nicest beach resort towns in the Golden State, pull out all the stops and enjoy your holiday in Santa Barbara, California, in high style.

  • Stay and play at a hotel near all the enticing attractions
  • Secure a great rate with the Expedia Best Price Guarantee
  • Sign up with the Expedia+ rewards program to earn perks and points

Seize the opportunity to book a stellar Santa Barbara hotel that makes the sun, sea, and sightseeing in SB even more enjoyable.

Hotels in Santa Barbara

While there are hotels in Santa Barbara, CA to fit every budget, some of the nicest places to stay are located near the sandy shoreline of the blue Pacific Ocean. Luxury oceanfront resorts are ideal when surfing, swimming, or sunbathing tops your list of things to do in Santa Barbara. Beachside attractions like the Museum of Natural History on Stearns Wharf and the Santa Barbara Zoo make seaside resorts perfect for family vacations, too.

If you're on the hunt for cheap hotel deals in Santa Barbara, the downtown area is a great destination. This historical area features charming adobe shops, bars, and restaurants topped with red-tile roofs that make you feel like you've been transported to a resort village on the Mediterranean. An evening stroll along streets lined with swaying palm trees and Mission-style architecture reveal why Santa Barbara is called the "Riviera of the West."

Best Time to Visit

With around 283 days of sunshine each year and daytime temperatures that rarely drop below 65 degrees Fahrenheit, it's no wonder that Santa Barbara vacation packages are popular in every season. Cool onshore breezes, moderate summer heat, and the offshore winds that the locals call "sundowners" keep the area warm and temperate in the fall. You may need to bring along an umbrella if you visit during the winter, but don't forget to pack your swimsuit and sunscreen, too. It's not uncommon for the skies to break out in sunshine even in the rainy season.

Getting around Santa Barbara

Southern California is famous for its car culture, so it's no surprise that getting around by car is the easiest way to explore Santa Barbara. The Santa Barbara Metropolitan Transit District (SBMTD) operates buses all over town, but the routes are geared towards daily commuters. SBMTD shuttle buses, on the other hand, are a convenient option if you're staying at a Santa Barbara hotel downtown, as they run along State Street to the waterfront throughout the day.

If you're flying into the city, you can make arrangements through Expedia to have a Santa Barba rental car waiting for you. Flights to Santa Barbara land at SBA airport, the city's municipal airport, and car rentals are available across from the baggage claim area on the terminal's first floor. The best Santa Barbara hotels offer car rental service too. Some even offer their own shuttle services to popular points of interest like the zoo and harbor.

Things to Do in Santa Barbara

With some of the most scenic stretches of sand on the West Coast, you could spend your entire holiday relaxing on the beaches of Santa Barbara, but it would be a shame to miss out on all the other fun activities and attractions the city has to offer. A visit to the Mission located north of the downtown area is must. Founded in 1786 by Franciscan friars, it's known as the Queen of the Missions for its grand architecture, beautiful gardens, and natural setting.

There's a wealth of activities to enjoy right outside your door when you stay at a hotel in SB's Funk Zone neighborhood. The waterfront area between State Street and Garden Street is the city's artistic hub, filled with artisan shops, galleries and tasty eateries. The Museum of Contemporary Art and the Santa Barbara Art Foundry lie within the boundaries of this engaging neighborhood, too. It's also a part of the Urban Wine Trail, a collection of local wineries where you can sample vintages from the region's award-winning vineyards.

With their reputation for quality service, hotels in Santa Barbara can be a great resource when it comes to exploring nearby attractions. From tickets to a Broadway show at the historical Granada Theatre to reservations at a restaurant on Stearns Wharf, your hotel can connect you with activities that are only a short stroll away.

Booking Your Trip

Wherever your travels take you in Santa Barbara, you can count on Expedia to help you make the most of your beach getaway. Use our travel tools to find everything from deals on airfare to special discounts on local attractions. When your vacation starts with booking a hotel room through Expedia, you can look forward to enjoying all the pleasures that a trip to Santa Barbara has to offer.