Guidebook for Santa Cruz

Chuck

Guidebook for Santa Cruz

Food Scene
Great for breakfast and lunch. The closest restaurant to our cottage, and a family favorite for 30 years. Go early, or you'll be waiting for 30-45 minutes. Still worth it.
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Linda's Seabreeze Café
542 Seabright Avenue
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Great for breakfast and lunch. The closest restaurant to our cottage, and a family favorite for 30 years. Go early, or you'll be waiting for 30-45 minutes. Still worth it.
Good local brew pub with a pub menu. Outdoor dining in the summer.
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Seabright Brewery
519 Seabright Avenue
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Good local brew pub with a pub menu. Outdoor dining in the summer.
Extremely popular, and for a good reason. Excellent food, outdoor drinks and dining in good weather, and great view of the harbor and ocean.
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Crow's Nest Restaurant
2218 East Cliff Drive
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Extremely popular, and for a good reason. Excellent food, outdoor drinks and dining in good weather, and great view of the harbor and ocean.
Closest fine dining to our home. Extensive wine list and Italian food selection. My wife's favorite place.
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La Posta
538 Seabright Avenue
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Closest fine dining to our home. Extensive wine list and Italian food selection. My wife's favorite place.
Fish restaurant with a commanding view of the yacht harbor. Sandwiches and fresh fish, cooked several ways. Full bar.
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Johnny's Harborside
493 Lake Avenue
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Fish restaurant with a commanding view of the yacht harbor. Sandwiches and fresh fish, cooked several ways. Full bar.
Organic Asian food that is delicious and very reasonably priced. A favorite of students and those who love healthy food.
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Charlie Hong Kong
1141 Soquel Avenue
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Organic Asian food that is delicious and very reasonably priced. A favorite of students and those who love healthy food.
A very nice, mature place to have a cocktail or a tasty select of unique dishes. We like the bar menu, but a complete menu is available. Quiet, convenient, with nearby parking. Limited but delicious menu.
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Oswald Restaurant
121 Soquel Avenue
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A very nice, mature place to have a cocktail or a tasty select of unique dishes. We like the bar menu, but a complete menu is available. Quiet, convenient, with nearby parking. Limited but delicious menu.
Fun sushi restaurant with some Santa Cruz-themed rolls. Large convenient parking lot shared with Trader Joe's.
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Mobo Sushi
105 River Street South
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Fun sushi restaurant with some Santa Cruz-themed rolls. Large convenient parking lot shared with Trader Joe's.
One of the three great bakeries in Santa Cruz. Wonderful breads, desserts, and custom sandwiches. Across from Shopper's Corner, another Santa Cruz institution.
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The Buttery
702 Soquel Avenue
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One of the three great bakeries in Santa Cruz. Wonderful breads, desserts, and custom sandwiches. Across from Shopper's Corner, another Santa Cruz institution.
Great view of the city and Monterey Bay, about a dozen restaurants, fresh seafood, relatively inexpensive parking on the wharf.
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Santa Cruz Wharf
21 Municipal Wharf
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Great view of the city and Monterey Bay, about a dozen restaurants, fresh seafood, relatively inexpensive parking on the wharf.
Nice, family-owned restaurant with excellent food and some reasonably priced wine. A family favorite, and also a UCSC hangout.
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Sabieng
1218 Mission Street
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Nice, family-owned restaurant with excellent food and some reasonably priced wine. A family favorite, and also a UCSC hangout.
This is the closest Starbucks, and there are a variety of other local coffee shops as well. Also one at Portola and 17th, which is walkable if you want a stroll.
Starbucks
1335 Pacific Ave
This is the closest Starbucks, and there are a variety of other local coffee shops as well. Also one at Portola and 17th, which is walkable if you want a stroll.
Our own local coffee roasting company, VERVE is about two blocks away. Very strong, locally roasted coffee and pastries. You can smell the coffee roasting in the morning.
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Verve Coffee Roasters
104 Bronson Street
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Our own local coffee roasting company, VERVE is about two blocks away. Very strong, locally roasted coffee and pastries. You can smell the coffee roasting in the morning.
Nice Italian restaurant with good service and reasonable prices. About 7 minutes away by car.
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Lago di Como
21490 East Cliff Drive
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Nice Italian restaurant with good service and reasonable prices. About 7 minutes away by car.
Intimate Italian restaurant with good service, traditional food, and a homey feel.
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Star Bene
1245 East Cliff Drive
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Intimate Italian restaurant with good service, traditional food, and a homey feel.
Very good Mexican restaurant downtown with full bar. Broad menu including seafood. Also check out the Taco Bar, just outside of the bar, with excellent tacos and burritos, freshly made. M-Th low $$.
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El Palomar
1336 Pacific Avenue
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Very good Mexican restaurant downtown with full bar. Broad menu including seafood. Also check out the Taco Bar, just outside of the bar, with excellent tacos and burritos, freshly made. M-Th low $$.
We tend to forget this waterfront restaurant, but it has reasonably good food and it's right on the Twin Lakes Beach. Watch the surf and volleyball, and enjoy a broad menu of breakfast and lunch/dinner entrees.
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Cafe El Palomar
2222 East Cliff Drive
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We tend to forget this waterfront restaurant, but it has reasonably good food and it's right on the Twin Lakes Beach. Watch the surf and volleyball, and enjoy a broad menu of breakfast and lunch/dinner entrees.
(Currently closed for renovation.) Right ON the harbor, with views of the channel and passing boats. Smaller inside dining for inclement weather. Breakfast menu, sandwiches, fresh fish, and burgers. Dog friendly. Bring a hat.
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Aldo's Harbor Restaurant
616 Atlantic Avenue
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(Currently closed for renovation.) Right ON the harbor, with views of the channel and passing boats. Smaller inside dining for inclement weather. Breakfast menu, sandwiches, fresh fish, and burgers. Dog friendly. Bring a hat.
Our favorite, hands down. Excellent food and drinks, comfortable, and not at all a "chain" restaurant. Call for reservations most nights. Snapper Special on Friday is muy bien! 688-4848
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Manuel's Mexican Restaurant
261 Center Avenue
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Our favorite, hands down. Excellent food and drinks, comfortable, and not at all a "chain" restaurant. Call for reservations most nights. Snapper Special on Friday is muy bien! 688-4848
Youngish scene, full bar, and good menu. Burgers, tacos, fish. A little loud for intimate conversations, but a favorite among our adult children. Easy parking off Portola.
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Süda
3910 Portola Drive
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Youngish scene, full bar, and good menu. Burgers, tacos, fish. A little loud for intimate conversations, but a favorite among our adult children. Easy parking off Portola.
Breakfast-lunch place that is a harbor favorite. Big breakfasts, including three egg omelets that will keep you reaching for your statins. Nice servers, extensive menu.
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Harbor Café
535 7th Avenue
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Breakfast-lunch place that is a harbor favorite. Big breakfasts, including three egg omelets that will keep you reaching for your statins. Nice servers, extensive menu.
Entertainment & Activities
Last of the Pacific seaside resorts with fun rides, free access, and a wide safe beach. Great for people watching, thrilling rides, and junk food. If it isn't fried, you won't find it at the Boardwalk. Great beach, too.
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Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk
400 Beach Street
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Last of the Pacific seaside resorts with fun rides, free access, and a wide safe beach. Great for people watching, thrilling rides, and junk food. If it isn't fried, you won't find it at the Boardwalk. Great beach, too.
Our local renowned climbing gym is only two blocks away! 50' walls, friendly service, and a fun atmosphere. Yoga is also available there.
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Pacific Edge Climbing Gym
104 Bronson Street
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Our local renowned climbing gym is only two blocks away! 50' walls, friendly service, and a fun atmosphere. Yoga is also available there.
Nearby park is dog-friendly, and has nice climbing structures for kids. Gateway to the upper yacht harbor.
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Frederick Street Park & Dog Park
168 Frederick Street
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Nearby park is dog-friendly, and has nice climbing structures for kids. Gateway to the upper yacht harbor.
Cute park, also nearby, which looks over the river and Boardwalk. Good for picnics, and a walking path leads to the river.
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Ocean View Park
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Cute park, also nearby, which looks over the river and Boardwalk. Good for picnics, and a walking path leads to the river.
World famous for a good reason: it totally rocks for kids, adults, anyone! Gorgeous facility on the bay with the most amazing exhibits. Allow three hours.
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Monterey Bay Aquarium
886 Cannery Row
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World famous for a good reason: it totally rocks for kids, adults, anyone! Gorgeous facility on the bay with the most amazing exhibits. Allow three hours.
Everything Else
Nice hiking area north of the harbor. Enter by Santa Cruz Bible Church bridge, at the end of Broadway. Great 3-mile loop from our home.
Arana Gulch
Nice hiking area north of the harbor. Enter by Santa Cruz Bible Church bridge, at the end of Broadway. Great 3-mile loop from our home.
Hey, just another Costco, but I love Costco and this is our local location. They also have a gas station a block away.
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Costco Wholesale
220 Sylvania Avenue
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Hey, just another Costco, but I love Costco and this is our local location. They also have a gas station a block away.
Large city park with golf, hiking, little league, biking, and picnics.
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DeLaveaga Park
850 Branciforte Drive
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Large city park with golf, hiking, little league, biking, and picnics.
One of the premier surf spots in California. Bring your camera and telephoto lens. You are perched 25' on a cliff with a panoramic view of the waves and surfers. Surving Museum is adjacent. Excellent.
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Steamer Lane
700 West Cliff Drive
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One of the premier surf spots in California. Bring your camera and telephoto lens. You are perched 25' on a cliff with a panoramic view of the waves and surfers. Surving Museum is adjacent. Excellent.
Closest yoga studio.
Ashtanga Yoga Institute at Pacific Cultural Center
1307 Seabright Avenue
Closest yoga studio.
Essentials
Yes, we have a Whole Foods. Great produce and other organic products. Bring your checkbook...
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Whole Foods Market
911 Soquel Avenue
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Yes, we have a Whole Foods. Great produce and other organic products. Bring your checkbook...
OK, just in case, here's the nearest ER and other hospital services. Susan has worked there for over 30 years. Great place to have a baby.
Dominican Hospital
OK, just in case, here's the nearest ER and other hospital services. Susan has worked there for over 30 years. Great place to have a baby.
Shopping
One of Santa Cruz's oldest health food markets with a wonderful selection of fresh foods, including a hot select to take home. Loved by the community.
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Staff of Life
1266 Soquel Ave
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One of Santa Cruz's oldest health food markets with a wonderful selection of fresh foods, including a hot select to take home. Loved by the community.
Well-respected boutique grocery store that's been there for 80 years. Extensive wine and cheese selection, with full butcher shop, excellent produce. Friendly service and good parking.
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Shopper's Corner
622 Soquel Avenue
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Well-respected boutique grocery store that's been there for 80 years. Extensive wine and cheese selection, with full butcher shop, excellent produce. Friendly service and good parking.
Everyone's favorite marine store. Tell them Chuck sent you.
West Marine
2450 17th Ave
Everyone's favorite marine store. Tell them Chuck sent you.
Parks & Nature
Our local beach, between the harbor and rivermouth. Broad sand beach with gentle surf, mostly, and fire pits if you want to cook out. Dogs on leashes! Bring your kite and skimboard.
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Seabright State Beach
15 East Cliff Drive
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Our local beach, between the harbor and rivermouth. Broad sand beach with gentle surf, mostly, and fire pits if you want to cook out. Dogs on leashes! Bring your kite and skimboard.
Well, not actually the park, but the entire area around the lighthouse is special. Walk along the cliff on West Cliff Dr and you'll see why so many people love Santa Cruz.
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Lighthouse Field State Beach
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Well, not actually the park, but the entire area around the lighthouse is special. Walk along the cliff on West Cliff Dr and you'll see why so many people love Santa Cruz.
Arts & Culture
Very highly acclaimed community college which has recently had a major facelift. Frequent dramatic and musical presentations. Nursing school has graduated many excellent nurses!
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Student Activities Center
6500 Soquel Drive
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Very highly acclaimed community college which has recently had a major facelift. Frequent dramatic and musical presentations. Nursing school has graduated many excellent nurses!
Major university in one of the prettiest settings every. Great views of Monterey Bay.
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University of California Santa Cruz
1156 High Street
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Major university in one of the prettiest settings every. Great views of Monterey Bay.