Crown Princess Cruise To Santa Barbara Day 5

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Thank you to Princess Cruises for hosting us on this awesome family cruise. All opinions are ours. We hope you enjoy our review, and tips of the Crown Princess, Princess Cruises California Coastal cruise.

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Day five started with this beautiful sunrise as we arrived in Santa Barbara. 

So far this has been my favorite view from our balcony. During the afternoon I spent some time just taking in the sights and sounds. We watched sea lions swim by, and the warm and cool breezes were the perfect touch. 

I noticed that so many different people like to cruise, and it is because a cruise can be anything you want it to me. If you are an adventurous vacationer, you will be very happy on a cruise and especially with the excursions they offer. If you are looking for a relaxing vacation, you will be equally as happy. Pete is more into adventures, and I like to relax and on a cruise, even people within the same traveling party can have their vacation just as they would like it.

For this port, we had to take the tenders to shore. We were staged in a dining room, given a number and then when our number was called we were taken to the boats. It was a short 10-minute ride to shore. The girls enjoyed the smaller boat ride, and we considered it an adventure all on its own.

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When you get to shore, you have a few options for the day. 

I advise booking your excursions via Princess Cruises because it takes a lot of planning off your hands. Any issues are resolved by Princess too. Since we’d been to the area multiple times, we decided to just explore a bit and get back on the ship. We enjoyed the amenities on the ship so much that it was fun just enjoying the Crown Princess.

When we were off the ship, we headed right to Stearns Warf. 

Stearns Warf features restaurants on the pier that serve the local’s favorite, seafood in all forms. Soup, salad, sandwiches, etc. 

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Since we don’t eat seafood, we headed onto State Street for more options. We stopped for lunch and did some souvenir shopping.

downtown santa barbara

Santa Barbara is known for the beautiful buildings and is a very pedestrian friendly town. If you just want to explore on foot, you will have an awesome time. If you are looking for a more structured itinerary, consider the following family friendly cruise port activities in Santa Barbara that are all a quick Uber drive away.

  • Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History Sea Center
  • Santa Barbara Zoo
  • Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History
  • Lotusland

old town santa barbara

Santa Barbara’s know for their fabulous wines. Princess Cruises has excursions that showcase them so be sure to explore all of their available excursions. They are adding more and more of them all the time. If you do plan to take a more adult themed excursion, it is good to know that children can stay in the kids clubs while you are in port. During this time they have to have a parent check them in and out in person, which is a great safety feature. We choose to explore together on port days, but Emmy begged us to let her stay in the club because she was having such a great time!

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There are great places to take pictures, and we didn’t miss a single one of them!

We found the perfect photo opp spot with the cruise ship as a background! The girls also played in the sand for a few moments and then we headed back to the Crown Princess.

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We were back just in time for afternoon tea.

This time, we decided to have a girls date. Little One brought her new seal friend “snow flake” and she enjoyed some tea too! Each time we have gone for tea they have different cookies, sandwiches, and pastries which are fun because you can try some new treats! The scones are amazing so be sure not to skip those!

kids tea aboard crown princesstea for kids princess cruises

Em and Ash asked to have an early dinner so that they could go to kids club while we ate our dinner.

They requested pizza, so we headed to the pool deck and relaxed while they ate dinner. The pizza is pretty well known because it’s really good!

crown princess cruise pizza

We got them settled in their kids clubs, and we went to Da Vinci’s for Italian Night!

Everyone is dressed up like we are in an Italian Restaurant in Italy. It set the mood and dinner was delicious. 

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I can’t even count how many nights in a row I’ve had some Tiramisu. Each one has been different and delicious. I hope to not break the streak now!

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Then it was 10:00 pm and time to pick the kids up from kids camp. 

You can pay for extended care (charged to your account) at $5 for every hour, but we opt to get her at closing time so she can get some rest for the next day. I had plans to go back out, but the gentle swaying of the boat makes me sleepy, so I stayed in with her. Ashley went out for cookies and milk with her friends while Pete and Maddie went to see the comedy and magic show. It was a full day of fun! 

Next stop is back to our hometown of San Diego! We are planning to be tourists in our own town. It’s always a different experience when you see a place through new eyes!

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Have you ever been a tourist in your own town?

PS. See our complete Crown Princess, Princess Cruises Review and Detailed Daily Posts Here.

Heather Reese
the authorHeather Reese
Heather Delaney Reese is the storyteller and photographer behind the lifestyle and family travel blog, It's a Lovely Life®! For the past decade, she has vacationed over 150 days a year with her family. She is a vegan, and loves being by the water, spending time with her children, husband, 2 Shih Tzus and Cat.


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