11 Best Places in California to Visit in the Summer

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2) Santa Barbara

Nestled between the Ynez Mountains and Pacific Ocean is one of California’s most beautiful towns. Santa Barbara’s natural scenery is stunning, with many charming attractions as well. In the heart of Santa Barbara is the friendly and welcoming State Street. Considered the “main drag”, it runs west to Stearns Wharf. Constructed in 1872, it’s the oldest working wooden wharf in California. Walk the length of State and browse the shops, art galleries, and museums that line the sidewalks. Restaurants are aplenty if you need to stop and refuel. Sun seekers should head to East Beach, a more laid-back strip of shoreline, when compared to the other area beaches. Shoreline park is great for views of the coastline and famous sunsets, with rows of impossibly high palm trees and the mountainous backdrop completing the picturesque views. Santa Barbara also boasts beautiful gardens like Lotusland, Orchid Estate, and the Botanical Gardens.

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