Wednesday, 24 June 2015

Laid Back Santa Barbara

Our American road trip continued, and we arrived in Santa Barbara quite late in the afternoon (we had previously stopped at Monterey, San Francisco and New York).  We arrived and unpacked at our base, Lavender Inn By The Sea.  This was a lovely little place to stay, just a short drive to the beach and with lots of lovely finishing touches such as complimentary cheese and wine in the evenings, and mine and my daughters personal favourite, freshly baked cookies and milk in the afternoons.  

But don't think it's all glamour.  We had now been away for just over a week, with alot of stops, and packing and unpacking.  We really needed to get some clothes washed, and in all of the places we had stayed, dry cleaning was $10 per sock, or something silly.  We hopped into the car for a bit of local exploration and found ourselves at a very very local laundrette where we spent the next hour washing and drying our clothes.  All I can say is, don't waste your time with Disney world, my daughter found the whole experience quite exciting.  I've never seen a toddler so happy pushing a huge laundry cart up and down the aisles of washing machines and driers! 


The next morning we awoke early, and after a delicious breakfast, we visited the local beach and pier.  It was amazing to see dolphins playing in the sea, just metres out in the clear waters.  And along the pier, we met huge pelicans hoping to get lucky and waiting for the local fishermen to drop a fish. 

The obvious thing to do on a beach when you are a toddler is to dig a hole and then climb in it! 

Our day consisted of wandering around the beautiful coastline and eating. It was perfect. Santa Barbara had a really lovely laid back vibe, was really clean and easy to get around. 

I was a little shocked at the huge homeless population in Santa Barbara. I don't think I have ever visited anywhere where I have seen so many homeless people. There seemed to be so many that I actually Googled it and there appears to be a real homeless community, and I guess need for aid there.  We never felt unsafe or hassled whilst we were wandering around, but it is something that shocked me and made me feel quite sad for these individuals whose life is on the streets.  

I would highly recommend a stop in Santa Barbara.  There was so much to do and see, and we really could have spent several more days there. The city itself was so picturesque with a beautiful coastline on one side and rolling mountains on the other.  

We left very early in the morning, and headed back along the Pacific Coast Highway 1, for our fifth and final stop, San Diego.  

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