Santa Cruz County remains in the Purple Tier.

Travel Blog

Capitola & Soquel: Relaxed Seaside and Rural Charm


Capitola’s seaside charm, combined with the rural feel of nearby Soquel oftentimes leave visitors longing for a more relaxed way of life in these small towns just south of Santa Cruz. Capitola Village, the Pacific coast’s oldest seaside resort town, retains the feel of a vintage beachside town, where galleries and boutiques decorate quaint streets as the lazy afternoon sun paints the colorful Venetian buildings in golden yellow light.


Walk Capitola Village, founded over 135 years ago and the Pacific coast’s oldest seaside resort town, where galleries and boutiques decorate quaint streets.

Bargetto Winery – the longest continually operating winery in Santa Cruz County – serves as an ideal starting point for self-guided wine tasting tours where the hills above town are draped with vineyards.

The Capitola Historical Museum – housed inside a quaint schoolhouse in the village – features changing exhibits and offers a glimpse into the daily life of yesteryear.

Stroll quaint 165-year-old town of Soquel Village where picturesque shops dot the streets.


  1. Pick up a map at the Capitola Historical Museum and enjoy a self-guided walking tour of the area.
  2. Walk to the end of Capitola Wharf, where you can rent a kayak or stand-up-paddleboard, fish, have lunch or just admire the scenery.
  3. Summertime twilight concerts and outdoor movies at Esplanade Park adjacent to the beach serve as the perfect setting for a picnic dinner while relaxing on a blanket.
  4. Browse the antique shops of Soquel Village where everything from heirloom jewelry to early American furniture can be found.
  5. Ride the cable car at Shadowbrook restaurant, a landmark eatery in Capitola overlooking Soquel Creek.  Or, walk through the manicured gardens and breathe in the ambiance.

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