In February, Santa Barbara begins to warm up, bringing tidings of spring on the horizon. With more days of sunshine, comfortably cool afternoons and longer daylight hours, it’s one of the perfect months to discover this coastal city. Enjoy a refreshing pint of craft beer or a glass of local pinot noir with that special someone during Valentine’s Day weekend or celebrate Hollywood’s acclaimed films (and its stars!) of the year at the Santa Barbara International Film Festival. Read on for the top reasons to visit Santa Barbara during the month of February.

Seasonal tip? Explore the Santa Barbara South Coast at your leisure and choose from these local accommodations offering a third night free when you book a two-night stay. With so many one-of-a-kind boutiques to shop and decadent meals to savor, do yourself a favor and add on an extra night.

Book Your Stay


Experience Santa Barbara’s cinematic side during the Santa Barbara International Film Festival (SBIFF), which will be held on Feb. 7-17. The film industry’s best will gather in The American Riviera® for 11 action-packed days of film screenings, celebrity tribute events, panel discussions, parties and more. This year, the festival is celebrating Bradley Cooper, Robert Downey Jr. and Mark Ruffalo, among other leaders in the film industry. Read here for more information on this year’s events.

Love is in the Air

February in Santa Barbara provides the perfect opportunity for a romantic getaway. Spend Valentine’s Day in Santa Barbara getting cozy on a beach walk, taking in epic views on a hike through the backcountry or savoring a delicious candlelit meal. For the wine lovers, Santa Barbara boasts a number of restaurants with amazing wine lists to sip your way through during your stay. For those looking veer off the beaten path on your next romantic excursion to The American Riviera®, we encourage you to embark on one of these unique date night ideas. If the time is right, Santa Barbara also has an inviting atmosphere for an unforgettable proposal, where the stunning landscape will make the ideal backdrop. Celebrating Galentine’s Day this year? Grab your gals and head to the Santa Barbara South Coast with this girlfriend’s guide in tow, which features plenty of wine tasting, mouthwatering meals and incredibly relaxing spa experiences.

Something Sweet

What tastes better together than wine and chocolate? Show your sweetheart some love this February with handmade artisan chocolates from one of Santa Barbara’s premium purveyors. Enjoy offerings from Jessica Foster Confections, like the passionfruit white chocolate or apple cinnamon truffles—and don’t miss out on the hand-rolled caramels that will melt in your mouth. Twenty-Four Blackbirds in the Haley Corridor gives visitors a chance to try single-origin chocolates from various countries, including Madagascar and the Dominican Republic. Twenty-Four Blackbirds also offers a tour of the facility accompanied with a wine and chocolate pairing; the hand-painted, bright and glossy truffles are a true sight to behold. (Tip: Try the dark chocolate covered espresso beans for a real caffeine kick.)

Located in Sevilla Square, Chocolate Maya sells local and imported bonbons and chocolates in unique, seasonal shapes and flavor combinations for the purist and for those that like a little adventure with each bite. On State Street, try Menchaca Chocolate, a true bean-to-bar experience that sources its chocolate from Guatemala and Ecuador. Menchaca Chocolate prides itself in creating completely vegan treats by using oat milk powder and the owners often host workshops for chocolate-lovers to concoct their own sweet creations.


In February, Lobero Theatre kicks off February with performances like Il Trovatore presented by Opera Santa Barbara (Feb. 9),  Latin instrumentalist Ottmar Liebert of Luna Negra (Feb. 18), French classical artist Hélène Grimaud (Feb. 22), Santa Barbara’s very own Youth Symphony (Feb. 25) and country musician Sarah Jarosz (Feb. 29).

Marjorie Luke Theatre presents 60 Years of Beatlemania! (Feb. 9) and a very special Chinese New Year Celebration (Feb. 10).

Explore the Santa Barbara Antique , Decorative Arts and Vintage Show & Sale (Feb. 23-25) at Earl Warren Showgrounds, where over 60 renowned dealers showcase an eclectic mix of vintage treasures, from 17th-century rarities to mid-century marvels, including furniture, jewelry, art and more, guaranteed to captivate every collector.

Get your wine fill at the ultimate celebration of pinot noir at the World of Pinot Noir (WOPN) at The Ritz-Carlton Bacara, Santa Barbara, from (Feb. 29-March 2), where global winemakers, chefs and wine enthusiasts gather for a weekend of tasting and learning about pinot noir from all over the world.

Featured February Events

Santa Barbara International Film Festival

Recurring daily

Feb. 4 - 15, 2025

Celebrate the magic of cinema at the 40th Annual Santa Barbara International Film Festival! Film enthusiasts can enjoy an unforgettable experience showcasing the finest in global cinema, featuring premieres, panels, and star-studded events. Immerse…


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