Travel Blog

Hike Through Santa Cruz County History

By Traci Hukill

The Santa Cruz Mountains are a hiker’s paradise. Hundreds of miles of trail crisscross this section of the Coast Range, which extends from southern Santa Cruz County all the way to San Francisco. Over the past 150 years, the splendid redwood forests blanketing these mountains have lured loggers and inspired environmentalists, who left their legacies along with fascinating stories that you can discover if you know where to go.

Discover the Wharves & Piers of Santa Cruz County!

By Garrick Ramirez

During the 19th century, Santa Cruz was one of the largest ports in Northern California thanks to a variety of booming industries including lumber, agriculture, and lime, a key element of the cement that built cities such as San Francisco. The region teemed with wharves and piers to transport goods to seabased ships, yet, over the years, nearly all were dismantled or swept away by ferocious storms. Today, can still explore three remaining piers, and marvel at the popular ruins of a fourth. Originally constructed to ship local products abroad, the wharves and piers that dot the Santa Cruz County shoreline today deliver an abundance of scenery, history, and good eats.

Wilder Ranch: Land of Milk and Money

By Traci Hukill

People love Wilder Ranch State Park. Hikers and mountain bikers come from all over to explore its 34 miles of trail winding through oak-crowned meadows and redwood ravines and to gape at its stupendous views of Monterey Bay. But many visitors also come to savor the gentler charms of the old farm complex, a tidy arrangement of whitewashed barns and restored old homes sheltered in a valley out of the reach of the brisk ocean breeze. Here goats, chickens and draft horses go about their peaceful daily business, the antique tractors snooze in their garage and time putters along like a Model T on Highway 1, cheerfully oblivious to the line of modern conveniences piled up behind and itching to take over.