Santa Cruz

It’s been over a month since MLK weekend but here goes my long overdue blog about our road trip.

With work and all the rain, we have been itching to get on the coast and get some much needed sunshine!  We left Berkeley mid-morning and headed down highway 1. We had planned to take the longer route for much needed sun, sea air, and to appreciate the coast and its little towns.

First stop was Half Moon Bay. We had a Yucatan lunch downtown and then headed to Ritz Carlton grounds. I’m telling you it is beautiful! You get to walk along the coast and there is even a secluded beach you can go down to, not to mention it’s pet friendly for our little furry beast! The next stop was Pescadero. A little coffee shop was recommended to us but lo and behold the town didn’t have power so a lot of its shops and cafes were closed or couldn’t serve food and drinks. Thanks a lot torrential rain– I know we need it but man it has been raining for several weeks now! Since, we weren’t able to get coffee we thought we’d stop by Swanton strawberry farm (another recommendation we got from our waitress in Half Moon Bay). I thought it was cute, just like a general store but with a trust system. You pay what is listed but no one is there to actually ring you out. You can find these kind of places throughout California and I think it’s neat! Oh and you can try all the jams your heart desires 🙂

We got to Santa Cruz around 3 pm and checked in to our AirBnB. I thought it was fairly decent room for just one night. I laid down and rested for a bit while C went on a run in the UC Santa Cruz campus. We made sure to catch the sunset on the West Cliff Drive and it was quite a ritual since a lot of the locals and tourist alike were all there waiting for the sun to set.

For dinner we headed to a local Hawaiian place called Pono and it was actually quite good being outside of Hawaii, however the band they had playing was a big NO. Thereafter we headed to Santa Cruz Mountain Brewing and had a couple of their beers. It was in the industrialized part of town and I do recommend stopping by if you have some time. We wentback to downtown SC to Lupulo which had a better vibe and to note dog friendly and finished up our drinks there. To top off the night we headed to The Penny Ice Creamery and ordered a cone with a roasted marshmallow! The creamery was highly recommended but be warned that there is always a line and they can be super slow.

The next morning we headed to Natural Bridges State Park and was saddened to hear that the Monarch butterflies had already migrated and we missed it. Lastly, before heading back to the East Bay we took more pictures of the beautiful coastal scenery, nothing but sun and blue skies! Great ending for a weekend trip to Santa Cruz.

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