Impressions from Santa Barbara and Ventura Region

I would like to share something from our recent holiday in California in November. The last week we spent in Oxnard Southern California with Paula’s family and they took us on sightseeing in some of the areas that now so sadly are hit with wildfires.

Sightseeing at Lake Casitas

Lake Casitas, Ventura

First stop was Lake Casitas in the Ventura Region which is a recreation area for hikers and bicyclists. I found it both beautiful and desolate and dangerously dry. Passing Santa Barbara further north we saw a historical library in Santa Ynez Valley. It was the oldest functioning library in California. The librarian invited us in and to meet an engaged person makes a visit so much more memorable.

“How tiny is it?  The favourite local joke is, should there be more than two people looking for books at the same time, it’s crowded. It’s 168 square feet in size and houses about 850 books.
How old is it?  When it first opened, New Mexico and Arizona were brand new states, the Titanic sank, and 18 U.S. Presidents have been in office over the last 100 years. It was built in 1912 and holds the distinction as the oldest branch library in the entire state of CA.
The Santa Ynez Library is Santa Barbara County Historical Landmark #11.
If you like things simple, this is the place. The little gem has no phone or computer and well, not much of anything fancy. Despite the library’s limited hours of 1 to 4 pm on Saturday’s only, it has 400 visitors each year. Imagine, some homes have larger closets than this genuine heartwarming charmer”

Pictures from the Santa Ynez Library



Adjacent is the Santa Ynez Carriage House 

These coaches were beautiful. From “Parks-Janeway Carriage House” homepage:

This remarkable building is home to one of the finest collections of authentic horse-drawn vehicles to be found in the entire West – the kinds of vehicles that opened the West to modern civilization in the days when “horse-power” meant just that.

California Coach

The Coach Museum

California Fire

The Coach Museum

California Coach Yellow

The Coach Museum

California Coach Red

The Coach Museum

California Coach Museum

California Coach Museum

California Coach

California Coach Museum

California Coach Museum

California Coach Museum

We were so thankful for being shown around at these places and hopefully, they are not in danger of the wildfires.


  1. For a dull English girl who always dreamed of living in the Wild West this article is wonderful, the pictures fantastic and the sadness I feel for the people whose lives have been ripped apart by the fires is acute. Thank you – I loved this


  2. Maria, I am reminded of your love for prams, so I am not surprised at how much you enjoyed the stage coaches. I heard from your friend, Pam. It is so funny that lived right around the corner from me. A connection made via Denmark! Love it!

    Liked by 1 person

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