One of the best parts about attending SMU is that our college friends are from ALL over the country. One of our close friends recently got married in Santa Barbara, so we were more than excited for a weekend getaway with all of our friends in California. Though we only had four days for our mini vacay, we saw so much of the area – so today we are sharing our itinerary with you all, since we had such a blast!
Fly into LAX early Friday morning and rent through Silvercar.
You are going to spend a decent bit of time in your car so we highly suggest getting a nice rental. Silvercar is incredibly easy, and who doesn’t love a silver Audi A4? Picture this like the Uber of rental cars- book through an app, fantastic service, luxury amenities (GPS, sunroof, low miles, Wi-Fi, XM). Best of all, it’s easy!! No long lines like a traditional rental car.
Roam around Santa Monica Pier.
We had breakfast at Shutters, and it was beautifully classic. If you want to try something different, the Viceroy was our second choice. We grabbed a bite to eat, roamed along the beach for an hour, explored a little and then headed north.
Drive on the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) until you get to Santa Barbara.
The views are absolutely breathtaking, so sit back and enjoy the ride. Before we arrived at our hotel, we stopped for lunch at Boathouse at Hendry’s Beach and highly recommend it for the views.
Where to stay in Santa Barbara:
We stayed at Bacara, where the wedding was held. It’s a very unique and beautiful resort, and although it’s a little further from the city of Santa Barbara, there is plenty to do at the resort – so don’t worry. Other top options: Canary in the town of Santa Barbara, Four Seasons Biltmore, or San Ysidro Ranch. We would suggest eating dinner at your resort and relaxing at the hotel.
Roam around the “Funk Zone” Saturday for lots of wine tasting!
Sunday morning it’s time to leave Santa Barbara, and your first stop will be Nobu Malibu.
Our GPS took us through Agoura Hills, Thousand Oaks, and we drove through Malibu Canyon back to the coast. This was one of the highlights of the drive, as you feel like you’re in Colorado – it’s beautiful! You need to call far in advance for a reservation, but you will thank us! Nobu Malibu has sleek furniture and great views. Think rosé and sashimi with views of the Pacific, yes please.
Take Sunset Blvd from the PCH until you get to Rodeo Drive.
This will let you drive through Malibu, Pacific Palisades, and Beverly Hills and who doesn’t love seeing these magnificent homes. Roam around Rodeo Drive and get a glass of champagne on the Montage rooftop pool!
Though we didn’t have time to check out these spots on our last trip, we recommend visiting these restaurants on your road trip!
Bars: The Imperial (whiskey bar), Mercury Lounge, Elsies’s (wine/beer)