Been there, done that... and you should do it too!
Our dream day in Santa Barbara’s Funk Zone
Alright folks, we know figuring out how to spend your one day in Santa Barbara can be tricky. Many of us only dream about a getaway to the legendary beach town, known for its perfect weather, spectacular shopping, majestic mountains, endless beach bodies cruising the palm tree lined bike path, oh yeah… and the remarkable wine! A trip to Santa Barbara would not be complete without a jaunt through the area’s hippest neighborhood, the Funk Zone. This neighborhood has received accolades in recent years for its abundance of art, eclectic shops, and emergence of wine tasting rooms. The area is a block from the waterfront, the famous Stearns Wharf Pier, as well as lower State Street - the most visited Santa Barbara destination for shopping, dining, and nightlife.
If you haven’t had a chance to get your Funk Zone fix, here is our recommendation… this day plan works for singles looking to mingle (or not), couples, and groups wanting to enjoy a fun experience together. The tasting rooms vary in size, but please give them sufficient warning if you are traveling with a large group so that they can provide quality service.
Why worry about driving when you can ride in style on the train? The Santa Barbara Train Station is located in the ideal spot if the Funk Zone is your desired destination. Albeit there is plenty of unrestricted parking in the area, and Hwy 101 is adjacent, the train is the way to go if you want to get your wine on.
- Get here.
- Purchase a Funk Zone wine package from www.shop.seeker.co. Only have one day in town? The Anacapa Wine Walk is for you. Here for an extended stay or think you’ll come back to visit soon? The Funk Zone Uncorked is your go-to. FYI - you will need a mobile device with internet for this tour. Smartphone not included in the package, sorry.
- Go play!
This is what makes a Funk Zone wine package the best option:
- The value is better than anything else you will find in town! Seriously, we’ve busted our butts to create a package that truly gives a taste of the local wine culture for a phenomenal price.
- It’s the only multi-winery tour for the area – and this tour is led by you! The package directs you to stops at our favorite tasting rooms in the area, so there is no need to worry about where to go (we promise you will love our picks). We include electronic maps, pictures, information, and bonus offers for each location, making your tour easy to navigate and at your own pace.
- The logistics are simple. You don’t need to pay on site; just have the servers tap the “redeem” button on your smartphone and they will hand you the featured item… it’s that easy!
It's Time to Begin your Adventure!
After you’ve gotten here and purchased a package, it’s time to begin your adventure. For this tentative plan we endorse the Anacapa Wine Walk, which includes a tasting flight, 3 glasses of wine, 2 for 1 tasting offers, and more. It doesn’t matter what tasting room you start at, or the order you visit for that matter, but we recommend starting at Santa Barbara Winery because they are generally open earlier than the other tasting rooms included in the package (by early we mean 10:00am). It’s 5:00pm somewhere, right? Enjoy your time at the oldest tasting room in the area while you drool over the amazing collection of trinkets and merchandise. Good thing you’re not buzzed yet, we know how shopping under the influence can lead to unintended spending… but then again, this is a great place to find that special souvenir!
Oreana Winery: Let the Sun Shine on Your Face In this Open-air Spot
Here you will find a lovely outdoor patio and a cool artsy indoor space, equipped with a working Pacman table. Grab your glass and head outside to enjoy the coastal breeze as you bask in the sun. This place can get bumping on busy weekends, often due to talented musicians playing to the patio crowd and fellow onlookers.
Mony’s Mexican Food & Taqueria: The Tastiest Tacos in Town
Amazing tacos await you not more than 100 feet away on Anacapa Street. We know Santa Barbara has some kickass Mexican food, but Mony’s is way up there with the best. We consider ourselves Taco aficionados, and the traditional tacos here are no joke. The other items are superb as well, and their unforgettable salsas should not be overlooked. Eat your food there or take it to go since space can be limited. Want a healthier choice? Head down Yannonali Street to Metropulos Fine Foods Merchant for scrumptious items. Side note: the laid-back tasting rooms generally allow food consumption inside, and the servers are quick to recommend a wine pairing to complement your food.
Area 5.1 Winery: Delicious Wine and the Perfect Spot for Friends
Now that your belly is full, it’s time to get back to your mission, and what better place to feed your need for exploration than Area 5.1 Winery. Here you will find secret blends and out of this world varietals, making their tasting flight a must do. Challenge somebody to a game of Mancala while you enjoy your flight. Everyone is friendly here; if not, what the aliens do with them is classified.
Drinking enough water? Yeah we might be in a serious drought, but don’t forget to stay hydrated! We want you to remember you experience today. So what now? Still have time and energy for another glass of wine? Of course you do! Head up the street to...
Corks n’ Crowns Tasting Room: Patio by Day, Fireside by Night
This place is known for being locals’ favorite wine bar (psst – they have craft beer here if you want to switch it up). Sip your wine by the fire inside or on the inviting patio outdoors. It’s always fun to people watch from the raised patio, where you can sneak a peak of the ocean not far away.
OK, so you’ve consumed all of the main items included in the Anacapa Wine Walk package… clap, clap, clap, applause! There are still some awesome venues to visit if you want a 2 for 1 wine tasting, but we know you might have hit your limit. It’s time to walk it off, or at least walk a little off. Enjoy wandering around the shabby chic streets and check out the nearby beachy boutiques, like Channel Island Surfboards, J7 Surfboards, or Surf-n-Wear’s Beach House. Can you sense the theme here?
Stearns Wharf Pier: Savor the Sunset over the Water
You’ve got to do the tourist thing and walk to the end of Stearns Wharf before your day is over. As you cross Cabrillo Boulevard and make your way toward the ocean, take a few minutes to watch people rip it up at Skater’s Point. If you are visiting on a Sunday, this boulevard hosts an all-day art walk, definitely a must-see if you’re into that sort of thing… which I think you are. Make your way down to the end of the pier and soak up the amazing panoramic view of the “American Riviera.” This title may be cheesy, but it’s true. The view from here is stunning; don't just take our word for it, you need to see it for yourself. The pier offers a variety of treats, from fresh fish to fresh ice cream cones. There is even a wine tasting room on the pier too! Deep Sea Tasting Room is the bee’s knees and our headliner for the Funk Zone Uncorked package (but it’s not really in the Funk Zone… well, close enough). This is the spot to be for sunset! Get your camera ready!
Lucky Penny and the Lark Restaurants: Tasty Food and Hipster Atmosphere
It’s getting dark, and you’re probably hungry. If you are looking for a quick eat or strong coffee, we recommend Lucky Penny (try their wood-fired pizzas). It’s back by the tasting rooms you visited on Anacapa Street. You can’t miss the wall covered in pennies, we hope you don’t miss it – perhaps you consumed a bit too much wine? If you can handle a sit down dinner, The Lark is a Santa Barbara favorite and the talk of the town. Fair warning, you should probably make a reservation, although it’s worth the wait if you didn’t plan ahead. Nearby State Street offers a bit of everything foodwise and delivers a killer nightlife if you want to keep the party going.
If your time in town is nearing an end, make your way back to the train station, or car if you came with a sober driver. There are plenty of hotels in the area if you want to crash in town. We love the hipster vibe at the Wayfarer Hotel, which is actually in the midst of the tasting rooms, and provides the only hotel pool in the Funk Zone. Their pool parties can be epic (call to ask about their upcoming social events). Not into epic pool parties and hipster vibes? Hotel Indigo offers contemporary sophistication, where you can explore their Art Library that houses the MCASB Satellite, featuring edgy, thought-provoking art exhibitions. Remember we said the Funk Zone is recognized for its art, not just wine? Take notice of the colorful wall murals and art galleries as you wander the streets.
We hope you enjoy your day in the Funk Zone! Come back soon to redeem your remaining wine items, or purchase a new package. We’re working hard to put together awesome packages for the Funk Zone… and new areas too! We know you will love our upcoming releases – view our website and join our mailing list to stay informed. Let’s celebrate together!
The Seeker Team
*This is a just a suggestion – blaze your own trail!
~Welcome to the Funk Zone~
11:00am-11:45am – Santa Barbara Winery (glass of wine)
12:00pm-12:45pm – Oreana Winery (glass of wine)
1:00pm-1:45pm – Mony’s or Metropulos (lunch)
2:00pm-2:45pm – Area 5.1 Winery (tasting flight)
3:00pm-3:45pm – Corks n’ Crowns Tasting Room (glass of wine)
4:00pm-4:45pm – Shop & wander
5:00-sunset – Check out the pier
Dusk – Lucky Penny or the Lark (dinner)
~Farewell to the Funk Zone~