The picturesque town of Aptos is in an unincorporated area of Santa Cruz County that includes the Rio Del Mar, Seacliff and Seascape areas. It is also home to historic Aptos Village, and the gateway to the Forest of Nisene Marks State Park.
GETTING HERE: Arrive at San Francisco International Airport (SFO) and drive approximately 70 miles/113 km south to Santa Cruz County (recommended: drive via Scenic Highway 1 – Pacific Coast Highway).
If it’s a Saturday, peruse the stands at the Aptos Farmer’s Market at Cabrillo College, where you’ll find the freshest in organic produce, flowers and more. Discover the works of local artists at Cabrillo College Gallery.
Go for a picturesque hike or rent mountain bikes and pedal along the redwood-shaded trails of the Forest of Nisene Marks State Park. Or venture out for a rural wine tasting experience on the Corralitos Wine Trail and visit Nicholson Vineyards, Storrs Winery, and Alfaro Family Vineyards. Prefer to be closer to town? Stop in at Aptos Village where you can find a tasting room, local coffee, and artisan ice cream.
Stop by the Aptos History Museum for a quick look at photos and artifacts from the community’s fascinating past. Soak up the sun at Seacliff State Beach or spread out a blanket and watch the sunset behind the SS Palo Alto – the “Cement Ship,” a source of pride for locals and a mid-county landmark. Learn more about its history at the Seacliff State Beach Visitor Center. Bring a picnic lunch and enjoy it on the sand at dog-friendly Rio Del Mar State Beach.
For a romantic dinner with ocean views, Sanderlings at the Seascape Beach Resort offers magnificent vistas. Dine indoors or on the comfortable patio. A path leads down to a beautiful beach for a post-meal walk.