There is something about getting into the car and going on a journey to taste, to explore and to discover… that is so very freeing….especially when you are heading up the California coast on highway 101. November is a wonderful time to head to wine country and buy some wines, spices, and last-minute holiday decoration. The landscape is simply breath-taking and a beautiful shade of green from all the rain we have had lately.
This is Santa Barbara Ranch, an enchanting ranch just off hwy 101. Santa Barbara Ranch lies just north of Goleta on the Goviota coast.
I asked Darrill to stop the car so I could take these pictures and explore….
As I approached the horses they stopped for just one moment and looked at me , then they continued grazing.
We continued up hwy 101 to scenic hwy 154, this hwy takes you inland to the beautiful little Christmas town nestled in the Santa Ynez Valley, Solvang.
We stopped at this very enchanting winery along the way to taste,..
This Grainy wine was divine… and so was the little orange balls they had there .
Then we stopped at the mission Santa Ines to discover…
This Bell is a landmark for every mission . The 21 missions that comprise California’s Historic Mission Trail are all located on or near Highway 101, which roughly traces El Camino Real (The Royal Road) named in honor of the Spanish monarchy which financed the expeditions into California in the quest for empire. From San Diego to Los Angeles, the historic highway is now known as Interstate 5. From Santa Clara to San Francisco, the road is called State Highway 82. North of San Francisco, Highway 101 again picks up the trail to the mission at San Rafael. From there, State Highway 37 leads to the last mission at Sonoma.
Santa Ines, 19th mission
Named for a 13 year-old Roman martyr, St. Agnes, who refused to sacrifice to the pagan gods in 304 AD, Santa Ines was dedicated in 1804 by Father Estevan Tapis. Amazingly, it survived the numerous earthquakes. The museum contains a notable collection of vestments, church records and missals, and the church displays some of the original decorations on a wall behind the altar. A historic grape arbor shelters a walkway that transports the visitor back in time, emerging in the lovely gardens that appear today as they did nearly 200 years ago.
Leonardo decided to do some exploring himself, he climbed up this tree and waited there till I took his picture.
We had a simply enchanting day….next post ….. a little window shopping down Copenhagen street in Solvang, and to the coast.