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Trip Planner USA  /  California  /  Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz

4
Santa Cruz remains synonymous with surfing, but this counterculture bastion offers plenty even if you don't plan to catch any waves. Some of the natural, undeveloped beaches feature calm water for swimming, and the boardwalk serves as a colorful area full of amusement games. The university brings students for much of the year, many of whom choose the school for its strong liberal arts programs and scenic environs. A healthy cafe culture exists here, and the local dining scene includes both restaurants covering a broad swath of global cuisines and establishments that maintain their focus on local ingredients. State parks surround Santa Cruz, making it an ideal base for trips into nature. Take stress off the schedule by using our United States tour builder website.
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Popular things to do in Santa Cruz

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4.7
Duration: 2 hours
4.2
Duration: 2h 30 min
4.8
Duration: 2 hours
4.6
Duration: 2h 30 min

Side trips from Santa Cruz

4.5
Duration: 3 hours
4.1
Duration: 2 hours
4.9
Duration: 2 hours
4.8
Duration: 2h 30 min

Hidden gems in Santa Cruz

4.2
Duration: 2 hours
4.8
Duration: 2 hours
4.7
Duration: 2 hours
4.6
Duration: 4 hours

Kid-friendly things to do in Santa Cruz

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4.3
Duration: 2 hours
4.6
Duration: 2 hours
4.6
Duration: 2h 30 min
4.0
Duration: 2h 30 min

Beaches in Santa Cruz

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4.5
Duration: 2 hours
4.5
Duration: 2h 30 min
4.5
Duration: 2 hours
4.3
Duration: 2 hours

Museums in Santa Cruz

4.5
Duration: 2 hours
4.4
Duration: 2 hours
4.2
Duration: 1h 30 min

Places to visit with Santa Cruz

Yosemite National Park BEST FOR: Geologic Formation, Hiking Trail, Waterfall
San Francisco BEST FOR: Island, Bridge, Pier / Boardwalk
Los Angeles BEST FOR: Theme Park, Specialty Museum, Historic Walking Area
Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Park BEST FOR: Historic Site, Forest, Hiking Trail
San Diego BEST FOR: Specialty Museum, Zoo, Beach