Wine tourism in Santa Barbara has become so popular these days it can almost be overwhelming. From the lively Funk Zone Downtown to the quiet vineyards of Santa Ynez, there is a lot to see, learn and drink on any trip to the city. To help navigate the options of where to go, who to visit and what to drink, we’ve rounded up the best wine tours in town:
The Sustainable Vine Wine Tour is one of the most popular options in Santa Barbara, because of knowledgeable hosts and attention to detail. With an emphasis on supporting small, family-owned, sustainable wineries, the tour also includes transportation, a customizable itinerary, a picnic lunch and knowledgeable guides The tour starts at 10am with pick-ups in Santa Barbara and ends at 5:30pm and costs $150/person.
Sustainable Vine Wine Tours. 3981 La Colina Road. 805 698 3911.
Santa Barbara Wine Canyon Tours offer comfort, ease and relaxation with all-inclusive full-day or half-day tours of the Santa Ynez Valley. Tours begin with door-to-door pickup. They include three-to-four tastings at premium wineries, as well as a picnic lunch catered by Panino. With over 25 years of experience, visitors are consistently pleased with these day trips, which cost between $12-$145 per person.
Wine Canyon Tours. 805 453 7047.
The Cloud Climbers Jeep & Wine Tour adds a little adventure to an otherwise leisurely day of gorgeous views and delicious California wine. This experience is all about the scenery, as guests ascend Old Stagecoach Road into the Santa Ynez Valley aboard open-air jeeps. Once at the top, visitors do tastings at 4 different wineries and enjoy a gourmet picnic lunch. The tour starts at 10am and lasts between 4-6 hours, the cost is $139/person.
Cloud Climbers Jeep & Wine Tours. Santa Barbara, CA. 805 646 3200.
For those who love sports and wine, why not try the I Bike Santa Barbara Wine Lover’s tour and experience wine country from the beautiful backroads. This tour is 12 miles long and will take you through Ballard Canyon and the heart of the vineyards. Included in the price is a bike, helmet, guide, olive oil and wine tastings at Rusack Winery, and lunch. The tour begins at 9am and ends around 4pm and costs $139/person.
I Bike Santa Barbara Wine Country Tours. 113 Harbor Way. 805 705 7998.
Captain Jack’s Santa Barbara Tours are all about fun, designed to give visitors unforgettable experiences and memories to take home. While the company offers several options, we recommend the Horseback Riding and Wine Tasting Tour. The day begins with a ride into the Santa Ynez mountains, includes a stop at the famous Cold Springs Tavern for lunch, then wraps up with tastings at two premium wineries and a stop at an olive farm in Los Olivos. This truly is the whole package and starts at $195/person.
Captain Jack’s Tours and Events. Santa Barbara, CA. 805 564 1819.