Santa Cruz Travel Guide 2011 - (Page 12)
Santa Cruz is undoubtedly the quintessential California beach town. Surfers tote their surfboards through local neighborhoods on their way to the beach. Families relax on the sand as kids splash and play in the water. Screams of delight drift above the waves from riders on the seaside rollercoaster, awakening nostalgic memories of summers past and inspiring a new generation. But while Santa Cruz is the classic spot to dig your toes into the warm sand and soak up the sun, the fun only begins at the beach. Santa Cruz has been described as “A classic beach town with a boardwalk and surfer vibe”, citing its classic amusement park and relaxed atmosphere. The heart of the city is Santa Cruz’s downtown area. Anchored by a clock tower, a vibrant town center pulsates with public art, timeless architecture, aromatic coffee houses and charming boutiques. The pedestrian-friendly, treelined streets are populated with unique shops, exquisite art galleries, outdoor bistros, movie theaters, nightclubs, spas, and sidewalk performers. Locallygrown organic fruits, vegetables and other culinary delights are the stars of the show at a weekly downtown farmer’s market. And a monthly antiques street faire showcases treasures from the past.
Downtown Santa Cruz is home to the Museum of Art & History, the Santa Cruz Symphony, Actors’ Theatre and many more cultural offerings including annual events such as the Cabrillo Music Festival, which performs at the Santa Cruz Civic Auditorium. Public murals and sculptures accentuate downtown’s cosmopolitan flavor, including the appealing bronze sculpture of musician Tom Jefferson
Santa Cruz haS been deSCribed aS “a ClaSSiC beaCh town with a boardwalk and Surfer vibe”
Scribner playing the musical saw, which greets visitors on Pacific Avenue. Clubs feature live blues, jazz, alternative rock and world music any night of the week. A First Friday Art Tour is a great way to see the sights downtown and breathe in some of the local culture.
On a bluff overlooking Downtown Santa Cruz stands the last remaining original building of the Santa Cruz Mission, the 12th Franciscan mission in California. The structure houses historic exhibits and offers one of the best views in town. The University of California at Santa Cruz sits atop a sprawling hillside overlooking the quaint town and the gleaming Monterey Bay. The University is home to the acclaimed performances of Shakespeare Santa Cruz and the UCSC Arts & Lectures series, as well as the renowned UCSC Arboretum, featuring plant displays from South Africa, New Zealand, and Australia as well as flora from California. The University’s performance halls, galleries, gardens, and hiking and biking trails are all open to visitors. Working your way back to the ocean, Seymour Marine Discovery Center at Long Marine Lab offers an up-close view of fascinating sea creatures. This noted research facility, affiliated with UC Santa Cruz, overlooks the bay and features seawater displays where visitors can hold live aquatic animals, aquariums, and marine exhibits illustrating the work of resident scientists. Outside, Ms. Blue, the world’s largest blue whale skeleton rests adjacent to the facility and from the back sun deck, you can also view the remains of the
Photo: Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk
La Feliz shipwreck, which crashed ashore more than 85 years ago.
2 0 1 1 O f f i c i a l S a n ta c r u z c O u n t y t r av e l e r ’ S G u i d e
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Santa Cruz Travel Guide 2011
Santa Cruz Travel Guide 2011
Welcome to Santa Cruz County
Your Wildlife Watching Destination
Field to Table
From the Mountains to the Sea
Culture and Creativity
201163 Events Calendar
A Wine Lover’s Paradise
Galleries and Museums
Exploring Santa Cruz County’s Great Outdoors
Pajaro Valley and Watsonville
San Lorenzo Valley
Capitola and Soquel
Santa Cruz Travel Guide 2011