When you are in California, you must not miss the beautiful beaches in Santa Cruz. Los Angeles may boast of Baywatch, but the beaches in Santa Cruz have their own beauty. There is a great variety of things to enjoy, like primo surf spots and an off-leash dog beach complete with open sandy areas and rocky, bird-watching bays. Visitors should start with Main Beach, where the picturesque boardwalk separates a big part of family-friendly beachfront from an old-American amusement park complete with prehistoric Big Dipper.
To the west of Main Beach lies West Cliff Dr which is creased with scramble-down-to coves and ample parking. There are benches to sit and watch huge pelicans diving for fish. In the lighthouse parking area, there is FYI, the best bathrooms with showers. The East Cliff Dr beaches are larger with calm waters. These beaches are less-trampled and more sheltered from wind. Parking can be difficult on summer weekends, but one can get a daily permit at East Cliff and 9th Ave.
Each and every beach has its own beauty, but some of the best beaches are: Main Beach, famous for its scenic beauty, shops, volleyball and crowd of people. Lost Boys was filmed on this beach. Cowell Beach is best for novice surfers. Another beach known as Its Beach lies to the west of the lighthouse and is the only official off-leash beach for dogs. Natural Bridges is a family favorite having lots of sand, tide pools and Monarch butterflies. Twin Lakes is a very vast beach with a pond and very popular among kids.
Other famous beaches include 26th Ave / Moran Lake County Park, Capitola-a warm beach with gentle waves, and New Brighton, best for running and camping. For transportation, check the Santa Cruz METRO for buses down the coast. While in California, one must never miss these beautiful beaches in Santa Cruz.