With one of the most beautiful coastlines anywhere and a relaxed beach lifestyle, Santa Cruz is a perfect spot for a vacation getaway. The area boasts phenomenal opportunities for outdoor recreation, especially water sports like sailing, diving, swimming, and most famously, surfing. With 11 world-class surf breaks, Santa Cruz is one of the premier places to catch a great wave.
Monterey Bay embraces the city and contains a number of marine sanctuaries teeming with wildlife. On land, there are lovely state parks and redwood forests native to the area. Known for a socially liberal outlook and grassroots activism, Santa Cruz is also a center of the organic agriculture movement.
The best time to visit Santa Cruz is April through October, when you're most likely to experience sunny days with mild temperatures.
There are no lack of opportunities to soak up the relaxed vibe and have a memorable Santa Cruz vacation. Don't miss the classic Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk, with a carousel and roller coaster that have been in operation since the early 20th century. Other man-made draws include the gravity-defying Mystery Spot and the Surfing Museum.
After you've reached your limit of hiking, rock climbing, skateboarding, and yes, surfing, take a chill break on the Santa Cruz Wharf for fishing and viewing the sea lions – or visit with butterflies taking a their winter vacation (October-January) at Lighthouse Field State Beach. Encounter majestic natural wonders at Big Basin Redwoods State Park, or get up close and personal with elephant seals at Año Nuevo State Marine Conservation Area.
Hungry after all spending all day communing with nature? Stroll downtown along Pacific Avenue for delicious dining at every price point, as well as fun shopping and nightlife. Or you can visit the Santa Cruz Farmer's Market, with a focus on sustainable agriculture and local organic foods.
While prices for vacation rentals in Santa Cruz can be high, it's worth it to be so close to prime surf and great ocean views. Beach houses, cottages, and even private rooms are available - search Tripping to compare prices, amenities, and reviews.
Looking for a vacation rental in Santa Cruz? Tripping.com has 344 vacation rental homes available in Santa Cruz. You'll find 2 studios, 139 1-bedroom, 72 2-bedroom and 131 rentals with 3 or more bedrooms ranging from $46 a night. For extra convenience, many of these vacation homes can be booked directly online.
The average price of a nightly rental in Santa Cruz is $334 while the average price of a weekly rental is $1222. For those looking for more than a short term rental such as corporate rentals, extended stays or long term rentals, the average monthly price of a Santa Cruz home is $4690.
Wondering if you can bring your dog or cat along with you? There are 94 pet-friendly vacation rentals available in Santa Cruz. In addition to accommodating pets, Santa Cruz rentals offer a variety of amenities. In particular, 295 rentals have Internet and WiFi, 245 have TV and/or cable and 32 have a pool or hot tub.Search properties from 8 vacation rental sites in Santa Cruz where the top providers in that area are HomeAway, Booking.com, and TripAdvisor. There are 201 HomeAway rentals, 60 Booking.com short term rentals and 37 TripAdvisor vacation rentals.