Santa Cruz County
Have dog, will travel. And you know a great place that you and your four-legged friend will love? Santa Cruz! From dog-friendly beaches and redwood hikes to restaurants and resorts, Santa Cruz County has a ton to offer for people and their pets.
Big Basin - Photo Credit: Alice Chen
Every time we visit, Santa Cruz County gets more and more dog-friendly. And this year there are several new opportunities to bark about. Tops among them: As of a couple of years ago, dogs have a place to hike with their people at Big Basin Redwoods State Park, where they previously were confined to campsites and picnic areas. The North Escape Road isn’t a trail, exactly, but it’ll do: The former fire evacuation road, surrounded by redwoods, provides for a 7-mile round-trip trek on a paved surface that parallels Opal Creek for much of the way. more »
Photo Credit: Visit Santa Cruz County
If you don’t live in Santa Cruz County, you probably know this gorgeous stretch of the California coast for its beaches, its stellar university and the namesake town that proudly embraces its somewhat eccentric reputation. But Santa Cruz County is also known for its mountains, its redwood forests and its wines, particularly the pinot noir and chardonnay that thrive in the fog-kissed climate. Wineries and tasting rooms are sprinkled throughout the county, and dogs get a warm welcome at many of them. more »
Roaring Camp Railroads - Photo Credit: zak_the_vizsla
When it comes to things to do with your dog in Santa Cruz County, there’s the obvious (beaches, wineries), and the not-so-obvious—like Byrne-Milliron Forest, a 400-acre Land Trust of Santa Cruz County property managed as a working forest and laced with dog-friendly trails (off-leash hiking for dogs with reliable recall is allowed). Another option for hikers is Pogonip, a 640-acre nature reserve/greenbelt with numerous dog-friendly trails. Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park is one of few state-run parks in California that allows dogs on some (but not all) trails. More...
Photo Credit: @zak_the_vizla more »
Beach Time! Photo Credit: Visit Santa Cruz County
Follow the Pacific Coast Highway (Highway 1) along the Santa Cruz County coastline, and you’ll be tempted by 29 miles of beaches (15 of them dog-friendly) along the way. Only one, Mitchell’s Cove, is legally leash-free, and then only before 10 a.m. and after 4 p.m. But no worries: there are plenty of other strands to explore provided you keep a tether stretched between you. more »
Historically known as the quintessential California beach vacation, Santa Cruz County
is the latest place to set your paws in the sand.
Enter the "Let's Cruz" Vacation Getaway for a chance to win a two-night stay at the renovated AAA four-diamond Chaminade Resort & Spa
located on a spectacular 300-acre Santa Cruz mountaintop. more »