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  • Santa Cruz County
  • Santa Cruz County, California

    For top outdoor adventures in Santa Cruz County, California, the Skyline to the Sea Trail is a must-visit. This scenic 29.5-mile trail takes you from the crest of the Santa Cruz Mountains to the Pacific Ocean, offering breathtaking views of redwood forests, waterfalls, and creeks along the way. The trail is moderately difficult, making it suitable for most hikers. For a shorter hike, try the 4.7-mile Wilder Ranch State Park Loop, which features stunning ocean views and historic farm buildings. For a unique outdoor attraction, visit the Natural Bridges State Beach, home to a natural rock arch in the sea. So, if you're looking for the best trails and outdoor activities, Santa Cruz County has plenty to offer.

    Top Spots in and near Santa Cruz County

    • Pacifica, California

      Surf at Pacifica State Beach

      4.5
      If you're looking for a place to surf and Ocean Beach isn't quite your speed or Santa Cruz is too far, head to Pacifica, specifically Linda Mar. Linda Mar is usually more wind protected and user-friendly than ocean beach. Break out your longboard or hybrid board and head to this beach. There is e...
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    • Castro Valley, California

      Lake Chabot Regional Park Loop

      4.0
      8.65 mi / 1263 ft gain
      Looking for a fun day on a lake, but don't want to drive too far? We recommend heading out to the East Bay where you can combine a nice hike with an afternoon of fishing. This moderately challenging hike remains scenic throughout the 8.5 mile trek around the lake, and offers many opportunities fo...
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    • Pacifica, California

      Rockaway Beach

      5.0
      Rockaway is a dark sandy beach located in the south of Pacifica, CA.  It has numerous hiking trails around it, most notably Mori Point.  The Mori Point trail will take you through the hills and overlooks Rockaway Beach. There are paths to come down to the beach.   There are biking paths and park...
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    • Pacifica, California

      Mori Point Loop

      4.8
      2.54 mi / 276 ft gain
      Start at the parking lots close to the pier, where bathrooms are also available. Walk along the pier to watch the sunset as it begins. Next, walk along Sharp Park Beach to discover the plethora of wild flowers and friendly locals always ready to guide you on your walk. Take the stairs up to the...
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    • Pacifica, California

      Milagra Overlook Trail

      5.0
      2.51 mi / 558 ft gain
      Found this hike with some friends after spending some time googling in my car when we were in the area looking for a quick hike with a view!   Dog friendly Free parking (but quite limited) Ocean views Known to have gorgeous wildflower blooms (we were not there during this)Porta-potty type toilet...
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    • Pacifica, California

      Picnic at Sharp Park Beach

      4.0
      A medium size beach with darker sand with big rocks and a paved path for walkers and joggers.  The beach is a great place to bring a picnic and watch the sunset.  It is located next to Pacifica Pier, which is popular for fishing.
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    • Pacifica, California

      Fish at Pacifica Pier

      5.0
      This is a great place for fishing or just taking a walk to watch the sunset.  It's a great place to walk or jog, or even bring a pup!  There are lot of people fishing throughout the pier.   A short walk away is Sharp Park Beach, where you can relax and bring a picnic to watch the sunset.
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