Go Back  Fodor's Forum > Destinations > United States
Reload this Page > What are the things to do in Santa Cruz and fun Restaurants to go to?

What are the things to do in Santa Cruz and fun Restaurants to go to?


Jul 5th, 2010, 04:33 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 104
What are the things to do in Santa Cruz and fun Restaurants to go to?

We are a very active family. We have have a 13 year old girl and 14 year old boy that we are taking to Santa Cruz for a week. Other than the Boardwalk and the Aquariam what are the fun things do in the area that would interest our kids as well as us.

Also looking for "must go to" fun restaurants In Santa Cruz. Local hangouts are a definite plus.

We are leaving soon so your input is very welcomed.

Klgallo is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jul 5th, 2010, 06:57 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,970
I love Santa Cruz, so you made a super good choice!

On the other side of the boardwalk is the beach, and a nice beach it is. Water is cold, but you can deal, especially on a warm day. Shoot, I could spend all day at the amusement park there and go back the next day for another round!

Next to the amusement park is the pier, so do go along there, and there's a couple of restaurants up there that aren't bad.

Walk further north past a couple of hotels & motels, and along the trail on the cliff. From there, you will see the glassy side of the surf line where the surf for beginners and intermediates is PERFECT. It's fun to just walk along that area and watch the surfers -- you are heading out where the coast juts out, so you can end up being side by side with the surfers sitting on their boards in the ocean. Around that spot, you'll also find the surfing memorial, a wonderful tribute to fallen surfers. Can't miss the statue. Continue on a little further and you'll reach the lighthouse -- which now houses the Santa Cruz surfing museum -- definitely worth a visit. It's open Weds - Mon, 10 - 5 p.m. Continue a few feet north and you hit the open surf and sand -- with killer, killer waves. Only for the expert, and even then . . . . But what a spot to take photos on the sand, especially at sunset!

Downtown Santa Cruz has undergone a wonderful historic transformation. Check out Pacific Ave. and the Santa Cruz bookstore, which created the famous bumper sticker "Keep Santa Cruz Weird". Lots of unique boutique kind of shops designed for the young and young at heart.

Restaurants with teens: I'd recommend two places: Hula's Island Grill on Cathcart -- http://www.hulastiki.com/
and Engfer Pizza Works on Seabright -- http://www.engferpizzaworks.com/
Both fun and have good food (IMO).

I wouldn't go to Santa Cruz without checking out who's playing at The Catalyst -- don't think your kids can get in --age entry varies, usually 16+, but if you like live music (alternative, indie) if you find something of interest and don't mind leaving the kids at the hotel, it is a great club that's been around forever. I used to go up in the dark ages to see Neil Young there, but still go back to see new bands when I'm up there.
Surfergirl is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jul 6th, 2010, 12:47 PM
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 11,897
In addition to Surfergirl's recommendations...

Santa Cruz mountains - redwood trees, hikes, picnicking, narrow gage steam train...

Capitola Village - several blocks of shops and restaurants next to a nice beach with a creek. Mr. Toots is a local instituion for coffee. Zelda's is great for burgers.

Watsonville - Gizdich ranch for u-pick berries, cider, and pies that will make you think you have gone to heaven

Moss Landing - boat tours of Elkhorn Slough and Phil's Fish Market for great chowder and seafood.
november_moon is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jul 6th, 2010, 01:24 PM
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 2,183
Oh, my, Gizdich ranch! The absolutely best pies. Personally, I really the Dutch apple pie.

Santa Cruz is nice, too.
Shanti is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jul 6th, 2010, 02:29 PM
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 4,640
In Capitola there is the Shadowbrook Inn if you want something nice. The food is great and you take a little trolley car down to the dining room which is unique and fun. ***kim***
kimamom is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jul 12th, 2010, 09:09 AM
Original Poster
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 104
Thanks everyone. Heading out today.

Klgallo is offline  
Reply With Quote

Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On

All times are GMT -8. The time now is 03:33 AM.