We all can appreciate the coastal breeze, ocean views and the sand between our paws…or, uh, toes. A must-see and must-do with your pooch is a walk along West Cliff Drive. West Cliff Drive is two and a half miles of coastal walking path that serves as a perfect perch to watch wildlife, surfers and to enjoy the breathtaking coast.
Let your pooch take in the fresh air and stop at Its Beach or Mitchell’s Cove Beach where he can frolic with friends, dig in the sand and gallop through the surf. At Mitchell’s Cove dogs are allowed off-leash before 10& a.m. and after 4 p.m. and it’s a popular spot for dogs and owners to meet and mingle.
The redwood forests of Santa Cruz County boast some of the most beautiful and awe inspiring views. Nature comes alive as you and your pooch explore through the towering redwoods. Henry Cowell Redwood State Park has several trails where dogs are welcome on leash, and boy will he love to sniff that mountain air! More pet-friendly hiking trails can be found at Big Basin Redwoods State Park, Nisene Marks and other parks throughout the county.
If you’d rather sit and relax as you take in the redwoods, then head over to Roaring Camp Railroads where you both can ride a 19th century steam train through the majestic forest.
We’re a bit spoiled here in Santa Cruz, California. Year ’round farmers’ markets, craft beer and local wine, fresh fish, and creative chefs are commonplace. So many menus in town pivot on what’s fresh, local, sustainable, organic and delicious. And lucky for you, just because you’re traveling with your pooch doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy all the deliciousness there is to offer!
Stop by The Picnic Basket where you’ll find amazing seasonal freshness paired with views of the beach, Wharf and Boardwalk. Sip on an organic craft brew at Santa Cruz Mountain Brewing in their gorgeous beer garden on the Westside. From local breakfast favorites to fine Italian, don’t miss a treat on your next trip!
We all need a place to lay our head at night, even your 60 pound “lap dog” that thinks your head is a pillow. In Santa Cruz County there are nearly 50 pet-friendly accommodations and you can find everything from the resorts on the hill to the inns near the beach. At Chaminade Resort & Spa they pamper you and your pooch with luxurious rooms, 3 miles of hiking trails on property and two restaurants that offer pooch-friendly patios, “yappy-hour” and “yappetizers.”
Chaminade recently completed a 7.9 million dollar renovation that included remodeling and property upgrades which you and your pup will surely enjoy. If you’re looking to stay closer to the coast, try Edgewater Beach Inn & Suites where the ocean breeze and sand are just a block away. There are plenty of hotels, motels, B&Bs, vacation homes and campgrounds that welcome Fido, so start planning your trip to Visit Santa Cruz!