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About Santa Cruz Main Beach in Santa Cruz, California

Santa Cruz Main Beach is known as Boardwalk Beach because of the popular boardwalk and amusement park at the beach on the Santa Cruz waterfront.

Main Beach is a south-facing beach that stretches from the mouth of the San Lorenzo River to the Santa Cruz Municipal Wharf wooden pier. Even with a large expanse of sand it gets quite packed with tourists and locals on sunny days.

Behind the beach you’ll find roller coasters and other amusement park rides, an arcade, mini golf, swimming pool, bowling alley, and many restaurant options. After exploring the boardwalk consider walking out to the end of the wharf to see the shops and look back at the city. Several seafood restaurant options are on the wharf and many others are nearby on Beach Street. The shops and attractions along Beach Street and the Santa Cruz Boardwalk are a must to explore if visiting for the first time.

In the summer the San Lorenzo River backs up creating a large stagnant lagoon at the east end of the beach where a narrow rock fin wall sticks out into the surf. Gulls and other birds can be spotted at the river.

Lifeguards are on hand most of the time at Main Beach making it a safer place for families to play in the waves. But be sure to check water quality before swimming as this beach and Cowell Beach (north of the pier) frequently get poor water ratings.

399 Beach St
Santa Cruz, CA 95060
Pet Details
No dogs allowed on the beach
Volleyball, Sunbathing, Swimming, Mini Golf, Bowling, Walking, Kayaking, Fishing, Boating, Stand Up Paddleboarding
Lifeguard, Restrooms, Shops, Restaurant, Amusement Park, Arcade, Boardwalk, Pier, Volleyball Courts, Kayak Rentals, Train
Map of Santa Cruz Main Beach
Santa Cruz, US
9:03 am, July 12, 2024
temperature icon 79°F
L: 61° H: 79°
Feels like 79.02 °F clear sky
Wind gusts: 0 m/s
UV Index: 2.35
Precipitation: 0 inch
Visibility: 10 km
Sunrise: 5:58 am
Sunset: 8:28 pm
Humidity 59 %
Pressure1011 mb
Wind 0 m/s

Nearby Beaches

Cowell Beach

0.3 miles away

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Seabright Beach

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Seabright Beach is a popular sandy beach next to Santa Cruz Main Beach in Santa Cruz. It is on...

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Steamer Lane

0.7 miles away

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Nearby Attractions

Nearby Lodging


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