Things to Do in Santa Barbara

bpmNEXT 2015 is located in one of the most beautiful spots in America, with lots to do besides think about BPM.   Think about bringing your partner, staying over a few days and making a vacation of it.

Santa Barbara!

Imagine London, Sydney or Buenos Aires – great food, great shopping, great culture. Now shrink it to about 20 square miles. Delete traffic and noisy, crowded streets. Keep the pedestrian-friendly, easy-to-get-around part plus the great architecture. Add wine. Now surround it with beautiful mountains, rolling valleys and miles of beautiful beach. Don’t forget beautiful hotels and outstanding restaurants! Welcome to the American Riviera®.

Whatever your passion, there’s always something to do in Santa Barbara, which combines big city culture with backwoods outdoor adventures, all set off by a culinary tradition that puts its name and flavors on the lips of food and wine critics across the country.

Love the outdoors? Ride horses, wind or waves! Patron of the arts? Explore Santa Barbara’s galleries and year-round arts events. Shopping? FoodWineWellness? Family fun? It’s all here, to explore on your own or with guided tours, served up in a laid-back elegance that’s distinctively Santa Barbara.

State Street

State Street is one of those amazing city arteries that in one street, captures every color, flavor and nuance of the town. And in Santa Barbara, that’s saying a lot. Just one block from the Canary, State Street stretches from the north end of town all the way to the oceanfront’s Stearns Wharf.  Put on your walking shoes (here that could be anything from Italian loafers to Birkenstocks) and get ready to discover amazing vintage boutiques, locally designed beachwear for your California girl (or boy) look, or duck into a shady patio for a magnifico margarita.Let’s just say that State Street is one of those avenues that begs to be explored on foot, because your options for retail therapy mixed with some Southern California sunshine are seemingly endless. Multiple Paseos — open-air malls accented with trickling fountains and Spanish red-tile roofs – lay waiting to be discovered, each with their own special character. Just a block from our hotel is Paseo Nuevo, downtown’s major retail anchor, featuring everything from one-off Santa Barbara finds to name brand stores such as Abercrombie & Fitch and Bebe. Others to explore include El Paseo, La Arcada Court and Victoria Court.Upper State Street is where you’ll find the shopping nirvana of La Cumbre Plaza, where dozens of top designer and big brand stores, including names like Louis Vuitton and Macy’s, make this open-air mall a perennial favorite with savvy shoppers. And just east of State Street, don’t miss the trendy and popular Funk Zone. Its name says it all: cool, hip and with a fresh attitude, this is where you’ll find everything from local icons like Channel Islands Surfboards to edgy boutiques and microbreweries. State Street is also home to historic theaters like the Arlington. Then again, you won’t even need a ticket for one of State Street’s best shows — just slow down to Santa Barbara speed, find a sunny bench, and take in the people-watching. It’s free and fabulous.

The Beach

With so many attractions, it’s hard to pinpoint the one that gives Santa Barbara so much sizzle. A gorgeous palm-lined beach is a pretty safe bet though.

hwy1This epic crescent of sand, just a mile from the hotel, has drawn everyone from Conquistadors to kayakers. Now it’s your turn. What you’ll find is an activity for every budget and interest from watersports and sunset strolls to wine tasting in the Waterfront district. And what State Street is to the rest of the city, the Cabrillo Bikeway is to the beachfront. This sun-soaked boardwalk is where you can roll like a local on your Kimpton bicycle before braking for that perfect stretch of sand or a latte at a beachside café.

And since this is sunny Santa Barbara, you’ll find a beach for every pursuit. East Beach is the place for beach volleyball whether you’re a weekend warrior or rated pro. There’s also family-friendly Leadbetter and buzzing Butterfly beach, perfect for people watching. Seaside Chase Palm Park is great for kicking around a soccer ball or just stretching out in the sun and enjoying the broad ocean views. A couple of miles west, locals also love Hendry’s Beach (also known as Arroyo Burro Beach) a great place for a jog in the sand or catching some waves. If you want to get your feet wet trying out the super hot sport of stand-up paddleboarding, you’ll find multiple locations where you can rent all the right gear. You can also surf, kite surf, sail, snorkel and scuba dive with local operators who can provide instruction and show you the area hotspots.

Want to experience Santa Barbara’s natural side? There’s also tidepooling, birdwatching and whale watching tours that put you photo-opp close to coastal wildlife including the California brown pelican, dolphins and gray whale. And if you want to explore the nearby Channel Islands National Park, tour operators can get you to nearby islands like Anacapa for a day trip you’ll never forget. Then again, everything about Santa Barbara’s beaches are magic and memorable.

Wine Country

Ever since the movie Sideways, people have been bending over backyards to get to Santa Barbara wine country. As a Canary guest, however, you can take advantage of their Urban Wine Trail vacation package or simply walk out the door with this map and let the wine adventures begin.

Where to start might pose a welcome dilemma considering there are more than 175 wineries in Santa Barbara Wine Country spread over 22,000 acresCREATOR: gd-jpeg v1.0 (using IJG JPEG v62), quality = 80That’s a lot of picture-perfect real estate to explore that includes winding country roads and gently rolling hills dotted with coastal oaks. During your discoveries, you might encounter a new microclimate around the bend that nourishes one of the 60 varietals grown here. So if you’re a fan of pinot noir, chardonnay, malbec, syrah, sauvignon blanc, cabernet sauvignon and a host of others, you’ll be able to enjoy Santa Barbara’s finest in a local winebar, restaurant or right in a tasting room.

One way to get your wine wanderings in gear is to follow one of the five wine trails here in Santa Barbara. They include Foxen Canyon and Alisos Canyon Roads, Santa Ynez and Los Olivos, Santa Maria Valley, Solvang Loop and Sta. Rita Hills Loop. But why drive yourself when there are so many great wine tour options here. We’ve listed a few favorites below located throughout Santa Barbara County. Then again, you can enjoy a wine tour right within the city limits in the Funk Zone, home of the Urban Wine Trail and a dozen innovative winemakers. You’ll also be able to make amazing wine discoveries right outside our door in local restaurants and wineshops. Then of course, there is the stellar collection of both local wines and global selections here at the hotel’s own Finch and Fork restaurant.