Valentine’s Date ideas to help romance blossom
With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, many people typically search for activities that will make the celebration special, whether they’re in a long-term relationship or contemplating a first date.
Lisa Amador of Santa Barbara Matchmaking offers this list of ideas to keep a romance going or to help it blossom.
Outdoor and Nature Dates
– Stand-Up Paddle Boats: The Sailing Center has built a launch pad from their dock so you can explore Santa Barbara Harbor, Stearns Wharf and East Beach. Find their info at www.sbsail.com
– Segway Tour: Riding a Segway along the beach or down flower-lined streets might get your relationship rolling.
– Duck Boats: Climb aboard Santa Barbara’s amphibious tour vehicle for a 90-minute land and sea adventure. Look at www.out2seesb.com
– Camping: Santa Barbara County offers two camping parks at Lake Cachuma and Jalama Beach, and state campgrounds dot the Central Coast as well.
– Whale Watching: Santa Barbara is a great spot for whale watching and taking a day trip to the Channel Islands for some awesome hiking trails. Log onto www.islandpackers.com.
– Santa Barbara Zoo: The zoo cares for rare, beautiful and endangered animals including lions, giraffes, penguins, elephants, gorillas, California condors and many more. Log onto www.sbzoo.org.
– Santa Barbara Botanic Garden: Walk together along a meadow, through a canyon and redwood forest, and along ridge tops that offer sweeping views of the Channel Islands.
– Lotusland – The remarkable collections of exotic plants are a personal expression of Madame Ganna Walska’s penchant for the dramatic, the unexpected and the whimsical. Log onto www.lotusland.org.
– Sea Center: This building on Stearn’s Wharf inspires a passion for the natural world — and maybe for each other? Admission also pays for a same-day visit to the Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History. Log onto www.sbnature.org.
– Chumash Painted Cave State Historic Park: The walls of this small cave contain some of the finest remaining rock art created by Chumash Native Americans.
Wine and Dine Dates
– Santa Barbara Wine Tour: The drivers at Sammy’s Limos and Tours are experts at making a wine tasting experience the best it can be. Log onto www.sammyslimos.com.
– Wine Tasting in the Funk Zone: Artists, winemakers and up-and-coming chefs have taken up shop in aged warehouses and forgotten scuba shops.
– Wine and Chocolate Tasting: Grassini Winery has teamed up with Jessica Foster Confections to create the perfect wine and truffle pairing. Log onto www.grassinifamilyvineyards.com.
Romantic Dining Options
– Holdren’s Steaks & Seafood Restaurant: Voted as the best steakhouse in Santa Barbara for seven straight years. Go tot www.holdrens.com.
– Belmond El Encanto Hotel: Dine in the elegant dining room or delight in a romantic dinner under the stars.
– Toma Restaurant and Bar: Santa Barbara’s most romantic waterfront restaurant.
– Wine Cask Restaurant: Enjoy shared plates al fresco on the patio lounge or nestle up in front of the fireplace.
– Boathouse at Hendry’s Beach: After a stroll on the beach, stop at the Boathouse for exquisite dining and ocean views.
For more ideas and information, call Santa Barbara Matchmaking at 805-699-5650 or log onto www.sbmatchmaking.com.