Santa Barbara County Courthouse
- Type: Monuments and Memorials, Sightseeing, Tours
- Time to Spend: 1 to 2 hours
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Most travelers scoff at the idea of visiting a courthouse while on vacation. Really dry and boring, right? Wrong. The Santa Barbara County Courthouse epitomizes the Spanish-Moorish architecture that is found across the city. Completed in 1929, the complex impresses visitors with its intricate tile mosaics, colorful gardens and jaw-dropping view of the city and ocean below. After climbing the stairs or taking the elevator to the top of the 85-foot "El Mirador" clock tower for a few photos, some visitors suggest you take a docent-led tour to learn more about the courthouse and Santa Barbara history.
One TripAdvisor traveler admits: "It's a great place to spend a couple of hours relaxing, reading a book on the lawn, or to just stop by and see while in Santa Barbara. And the view is incredible. A must-see, for sure."
The courthouse is only a block from bustling State Street, near the Santa Barbara Museum of Art. Visitors are welcome from 8:30 a.m. on weekdays and from 10 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. on weekends. On most weekdays the docent-led tours are given at 10:30 and at 2 p.m. On Thursdays and weekends you can only take the tour at 2 p.m. For more information, check out the Santa Barbara County Courthouse website.