I love Santa Barbara. Not just the City or the Beach, but the entire County along the Coast and inland. My favorite Wine Country lies in the Santa Ynez Valley, not Napa. And there is more there than what you saw in Sideways (an enjoyable film nevertheless). I have two Daytrips posts written that give some ideas: Santa Barbara and Buelton.
Broughton Hotels is running a special right now for its “The Inn at East Beach”. I hope it is not because the recent fires have scared away potential tourists. But if it is, then that is even more reason to pay a visit and help those local businesses.
Here is a list provided by Broughton Hotels of the top free things to do in Santa Barbara. Hope you make a trip.