With 300 days of sunshine, it’s no wonder outdoor patios abound in the Santa Cruz area. From beachfront decks to secret garden patios, the following open-air spots allow you and your four-legged dining companions to soak up plenty of scenery and summer sun.
By Garrick Ramirez
With kid-friendly attractions such as the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk and Roaring Camp Railroads plus miles of sandy beaches, it’s little wonder Santa Cruz County is favorite destination for families. And while all hotels welcome kiddos, some go the extra mile to delight the smallest members of your party. We’re talking big perks for little people. Offering everything from giant bouncy platforms to s’mores parties on the beach, here are the top kid-friendly hotels in Santa Cruz County.
The link between Santa Cruz and Hawaii extends beyond their share of sunny beaches and laid-back vibes. In 1885, three, vacationing Hawaiian princes dazzled Santa Cruz locals by riding waves on makeshift boards they had made from redwood planks. It marked the introduction of surfing to the mainland U.S., and sparked a nationwide craze that began here in Santa Cruz. Today, the region brims with other Hawaiian imports such as poke bowls and Kona coffee that will transport you to the islands. From ono grinds to ukulele melodies, here’s where to find aloha in Santa Cruz County.
If you follow us on Instagram, you already know how alluring Santa Cruz County is on your phone. Yet, nothing compares to experiencing its dazzling scenery and relaxed vibes IRL. Santa Cruz County brims with sunny golden shores, lush redwood groves, and a vibrant surf scene that need no filter. Below, we’ve shared some local Instagram hotspots to fill your feed with mesmerizing imagery—and your followers with FOMO. Just remember to tag your posts with #Visit Santa Cruz and #SantaCruzNow for a chance be featured on our page!
Watsonville provides stunning views of the Monterey Bay, a rich history of California agriculture and so much more. Below, we’ve narrowed down a list of 15 to lend a weekend-friendly taste of the many activities and sights offered within the dynamic, historic town.