For those eager to escape the smog and congestion of the City of Angels — and the stifling SoCal temperatures during the height of summer — there’s no easier getaway than Santa Barbara. This verdant beachside community along the historic El Camino Real freeway is no more than a 90-minute drive from Downtown L.A., and a relatively tranquil haven for many in the industry, including Oprah Winfrey, James Cameron and Jeff Bridges.

Trulia.com reveals the median sales price for Santa Barbara property in the quarter ending Aug. 14 was $774,000, reflecting an upward trend of 12.5% over the past five years. While four-bedroom properties average $1.1 million, it’s one-bedroom houses that have appreciated the most: 28% over last year, and more than double the $226,000 average of five years ago.