For a change, get there by train:
Board the Coast Starlight at Union Station and take a seat in the observation car. Gawk at the rock formations in Chatsworth, the orchards in Simi. From Ventura on, it’s mostly ocean.
You’re here! Walk two blocks west to the harbor for stellar seafood at Brophy Bros. Then return to the station. South on Yananoli Street, explore the urban wine trail in the Funk Zone, an industrial strip gone hip.
Sample your way through established wineries like Kalyra and Oreana. On weekends, Reds Bar & Tapas has live music.
A half-hour stroll (less with the waterfront shuttle) leads to the recently renovated Hyatt Santa Barbara, a classic by the beach. For fine French cooking served in an 1852 home, try Stella Mare’s—20 minutes by footpath.
The Arts and Crafts Show, the beach—you've got options. The train home leaves at 6:02 p.m.