By Ilona Kauremszky

Q: My husband and I would like to visit Santa Barbara for a couple of weeks this fall. We would like an escorted tour but could do it on our own. We do not require airfare. Would you kindly suggest a web site where I could find out about escorted tours or where to stay if winging it on our own. I have visited some site but not getting very far and would appreciate your help.

A: Start by logging onto, the official visitor information resource for Santa Barbara and click on the “Tours & Transportation” section which lists tour companies. Shannon Turner Brooks, director of communications for the Santa Barbara Conference & Visitors Bureau and Film Commission says there is a wonderful 90-minute city overview tour with Santa Barbara Trolley Tours that’s scenic and informative and, depending on the driver of the day, humorous! “The great thing about their tours is you can get on and off at certain locations and explore and pick up the next trolley to continue on the tour,” she offers.

For the “Accommodations” section, there are listings featuring “Hot Deals.” These are special offers and discounts at hotels in the area. In addition, the Santa Barbara Car Free Packages on offers discounts for visitors who either arrive without a car or want to leave their cars behind while exploring the town.

For the green traveler, there is a new web site that offers eco-conscious suggestions for travelers including accommodations and itineraries.


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