Tag Archives: Santa Cruz

Returning to the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk.

When I think back to my child years, one of my favorite places to go in the summer was the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk in Santa Cruz, California. Sitting alongside Monterey Bay, it is the states oldest amusement park, providing fun for families and people of all ages since 1907.

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, California, Monterey Bay

The Boardwalk is free to walk around to soak in the atmosphere whether the park is open or closed. If you don’t have much time, you can purchase a ticket for just an individual ride. The ride to go on is the Giant Dipper. It is one of the oldest wooden roller coasters in the world running since 1924 and recognized as a National Historic Landmark.

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, California, Monterey Bay

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, California, Monterey Bay

My feet as a child always gravitated to the Sky Glider and Logger’s Revenge. Beautiful panoramic views of the park, ocean and surrounding area await up-top the glider. Nothing like cooling down to a big splash on a warm summer day on a log ride.

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, California, Monterey Bay

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, California, Monterey Bay

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, California, Monterey Bay

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, California, Monterey Bay

The Casino Arcade alongside the amusement park contains hundreds of video games, new and old school. You’ll find plenty of spots outside to enjoy the carnival food of the boardwalk or have a picnic.

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, California, Monterey Bay

Lots of beach awaits to soak in some sun and/or go for a dip. Straight ahead is…

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, California, Monterey Bay

the Santa Cruz Wharf where you will find shops, souvenirs, seafood opportunities and you might even spot a sea lion or two.

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, California, Monterey Bay

While walking down the wharf, look back to get beautiful views of the beach, palm trees and the half-mile long boardwalk. I got goosebumps returning to the Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk. Hope to relive more fun memories and make new ones there again soon.

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, California, Monterey Bay

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, California, Monterey Bay

Photo of the Week: Chilling along West Cliff Drive.

While driving into Santa Cruz, California from the north on the Pacific Coast Highway, I decided to drive and chill along West Cliff Drive. Was amongst beautiful coastline, beaches, people running, biking and surfing and lots of coastal homes.

West Cliff Drive, Santa Cruz, California

California’s Capitola Beach.

I’m in San Francisco last summer. I’m hanging out along the coast. Where to go? Where to go? It shouldn’t have even been a question. It was time to head an hour south on the PCH, the Pacific Coast Highway, to Capitola and the beach. It’s a beach town and place I have spent a lot of time at in my youth.

Parking is usually very hard to come by close to the beach and in town, so when I arrived I parked up-top alongside Cliff Dr. a few blocks away. The beach, village, house and coastline straight ahead.

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

The view is definitely worth the extra walk. Up above you can also see people stand up paddle boarding along the shoreline. Looking out you can see Capitola Wharf and Monterey Bay.

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

Capitola sits along the bay with the Pacific Ocean not far past. Lot’s of people boating on the open blue waters too.

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

Almost there beach! Always love seeing the colorful umbrellas.

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

Arriving in the heart of town you’ll see the sand bar and Soquel Creek as it flows towards the bay. The beach sits opposite.

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

You’ll find outdoor food, drink and entertainment options along the creek including Margaritaville, Mr. Toots Coffeehouse, Pizza My Heart, Paradise Beach Grille…

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

…and Zelda’s on the Beach. Lot’s of people having a good time while soaking in the sun. Antique stores, galleries and ice cream shops dot the streets as well.

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

The beach!

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

Lots of people were taking advantage of the warm, sunny summer day.

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

Of course I’m going to gravitate towards a park bench. Low and behold, its facing a scenic panoramic view. While sitting and looking down…

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

…you can checkout the colorful, hand-painted sea wall tiles, part of a community art project back in 2008. Lots of stories on that wall. 🙂

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

Alongside the beach is the aforementioned Capitola Wharf where you’ll find fisherman, views of the beach and surrounding areas and the Wharf House restaurant at the end, which I’ve yet to checkout.

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

I captured some close shots of people playing in the water and…

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

…stand up paddle boarding.

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

Palm trees and…

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

…colorful Mediterranean style housing are also part the of the Capitola picture.

Capitola Beach, California, PCH

It was great a day at my favorite beach town. I’ll be returning for sure next time I’m around San Francisco. 🙂

For more Capitola, checkout my time that day hanging around the colorful Mediterranean style housing along the shoreline and at Mr. Toots Coffeehouse.

What is your favorite beachtown? Any California beach town recommendations?

Coffeeing it Up in Beach Town Capitola.

The beach. A hot coffee. A lot of people, including me, would normally think what? There’s one spot I’ve been where I’m glad to combine them, Mr. Toots Coffeehouse in Capitola, California.

Capitola, coffee, Mr. Toots coffeehouse, California

Mr. Toots sits right along the beach and Pacific Ocean up-top Margaritaville and is a place I’ve been going to since I was a little boy. They are one of the oldest coffeehouses around Capitola and nearby Santa Cruz, being open since the 1980’s.

Capitola, coffee, Mr. Toots coffeehouse, California

Love the different signage they use to showcase their name and brand.

Capitola, coffee, Mr. Toots coffeehouse, California

The hot coffee of choice today, a mocha, made with the local Ghirardelli chocolate yum.

Capitola, coffee, Mr. Toots coffeehouse, California

Sit down and relax amongst the local art, books and a piano. It was quiet on this weekday afternoon, but come back and enjoy a caffeinated beverage while musicians are playing. I remember coming here with my parents, grandparents and others in the summer evenings to listen to the local talent.

Capitola, coffee, Mr. Toots coffeehouse, California

Normally I take thorough pics of any great coffee, not just the cup, but it didn’t even cross my mind on this day regrettably. 😦 Why you ask? Upon entering my entire focus was to see again the view from their outdoor balcony.

You can take your coffee outside and enjoy the sandbar, beach, ocean, pier…

Capitola, coffee, Mr. Toots coffeehouse, California

and best of all, the colorful Mediterranean style housing staring right back at you. I sat there in awe with my beverage soaking in a little sun. It was capturing the scenery and atmosphere over the coffee on this visit. 🙂

Capitola, coffee, Mr. Toots coffeehouse, California

Great coffee, times and views from Mr. Toots Coffeehouse in Capitola. Stay tuned for more on the Mediterranean housing, the beach and Capitola itself. 🙂

Check them out on Facebook and also their website. I’ll make sure to capture the coffee next time. 🙂

What beach town coffeehouses and cafés have you come across in your travels that you would recommend? Where’s the most scenic spot you’ve ever seen from a coffeehouse?