Easily reached from San Francisco, the city of Santa Cruz offers visitors a seaside resort with a pleasant atmosphere ideal for family vacations. Many Santa Cruz vacation rentals are located close to the famous boardwalk area where kids and adults will find entertainment including amusement park rides, water sports and beachside activities. The clear Pacific waters harbor abundant sea life and sailing; whale watching and kayaking are favorite local pastimes. Mild central California climate conditions provide ample sunshine for enjoying the beach, bike riding and walking.
Family Fun on the Santa Cruz Boardwalk
Roller coasters, thrill rides and a charming old-fashioned carousel highlight a visit to the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. There, children of all ages and their parents will be entertained. A casino-style arcade, bowling, miniature golf and a variety of food vendors are nearby, making it easy to spend a full day at the park. Special events including concerts and discount days are available to enjoy throughout the year.
A Day at the Beach
The wide sandy beach surrounding the Santa Cruz coastline is an ideal place to take a long walk, look for seashells and relax by the surf. Local vendors rent volleyball equipment, beach chairs and umbrellas to beachgoers. At Lighthouse Point, a museum describes surfing traditions in the area. Several nearby state beaches including New Brighton, Natural Bridges and Seacliff are ideal for beach walks, picnics and exploring tide pools.
Enjoy a Whale Watching or Kayaking Excursion
Professional whale watching charters take visitors on a boat ride around the Monterey Bay where abundant sea life thrives. The scenery is spectacular, and the guides often spot several types of whales, dolphins, sea lions and otters. Trips can be arranged from locations in town or from the Monterey Wharf, a short drive from Santa Cruz vacation rentals. The large inlet waters of Monterey Bay provide a safe, yet exciting place to rent a sailboat or take the family on a kayaking adventure. Experienced guides provide instruction and ensure safety for all age groups.
Hiking Trails from Mountains to Shore
The California redwoods grow near Santa Cruz and can be viewed in nearby state parks. Hiking trails, that accommodate nature walks to full-day treks, cross terrain that travels from inland forests to the shore. Many trails offer elevated views and are suitable for mountain biking.
Santa Cruz vacation rentals are located within walking distance of the beach and in close proximity to major attractions in the area. In addition to various outdoor recreation opportunities, the family may enjoy shopping, dining and theater venues located in town.
- License: Creative Commons image source
Eric Regan is a writer who loves to see what the world has to offer. He has written about destinations all over the world