Santa Maria is a smallish, but relatively populous city in the northwestern Santa Barbara County
region of California's Central Coast. It borders the city of Orcutt and is quite close to such areas as Guadalupe, Nipomo, and Casmalia; it is also not far from the Vandenberg Air Force Base. Santa Maria is best known as a cornerstone of Santa Barbara County's highly celebrated wine industry. Not only is wine produced there, but Santa Maria grapes are also widely sought out and used in wine-making across the greater Santa Barbara region.
One of Santa Maria's strongest suits is natural beauty: it is effectively sandwiched between the San Rafael Mountains/Los Padres National Forest in the east and the Pacific Ocean in the west. The entire region is a fairly common destination for tourists, which helps to support a service and hospitality industry that includes winery tours and wine-tasting events. Primary arteries: the 101, 135, and 166 freeways, as well as the Pacific Coast Highway.