As part of our USA Summer Roadtrip we stopped off on our trail down the beautiful West Coast for a weekend in Santa Cruz. If you’ve never been to Santa Cruz just picture sunshine, palm tree lined streets, ocean front amusements, California’s oldest vintage boardwalk, surfers, dive bars, great food and good vibrations. Here’s a little look at some of the lovely things we got up to this weekend:
Food: Eat breakfast at The Santa Cruz Diner– A little gem near Downtown Santa Cruz. The Santa Cruz Diner may not be flagged as a destination in any official guide book but let me tell you, it’s the greatest! The menu is seriously extensive, the prices reasonable and every meal we ate there was incredible. I can highly recommend the pancakes with fruit, the noodle soup, the Vietnamese spring rolls, the Caesar Salad, The Chocolate Cream Cake. We ate there for quite a number of meals, we loved it so much. 10/10
Vintage Shopping: Head down to Moon Zoom at 813 Pacific Ave Santa Cruz, CA 95060. In fact there are a bunch of vintage shops of Pacific Ave, but I would say that Moon Zoom was the best by far. Head straight to the back of the store for the pre- 1950’s rails, a couple of great 50’s/ 40’s dresses to choose from. Theresa found this incredible ‘cow in a Jewish scarf wearing a life ring’ print shirt which I think you’ll agree it’s pretty special, right? so directional, the print sparked off a whole array of philosophical conversations, what does it mean? why is the cow wearing a life ring? which creative genius designed this beauty? Moon Zoom had all kinds of great pieces mostly 60’s/ 70’s and 80’s, great stuff.
Culture: The Santa Cruz Museum Of Art- We spent a fun couple of hours walking around the museum, there’s a ‘All You Need Is Love’ exhibition on at the moment which was a bit of a tear jerker, filled with stories of love and all things love related. For a full write up on our trip take a look at my sister Theresa’s blog The Exhibition List. The Museum is $5 to get in and worth every penny.
Entertainment: The 104-year-old Cocoanut Grove is an iconic landmark on the Santa Cruz Seafront designed by local architect William H. Weeks. Now playing host to various public and private events throughout the year and has a very lively casino in the back. The Cocoanut Grove has a very colourful history hosting some of history’s greatest big band acts including Artie Shaw, Benny Goodman, Buddy Rogers, Xavier Cugat, Vincent Lopez, and Glen Gray. By the 1960’s the emphasis switched to a younger teenage audience with contemporary artists performing from Nat “King” Cole to Sonny and Cher. A real jewel in California’s entertainment history.
The Beach: Amazing. We spent Saturday paddling in the water, laying in the sun, romping around in the sand and people watching. The beach was pretty darn busy but it was July 4th weekend. Miles and miles of untouched golden sand, great waves for surfing and baywatch style lifeguards.Vintage Boardwalk: The famous vintage boardwalk is California’s oldest surviving amusement park and makes for a fabulous walk during the day or the evening. The eastern end of the boardwalk is dominated by the Giant Dipper roller coaster, one of the best-known wooden coasters in the world and one of the most visible landmarks in Santa Cruz, you can hear the screams from miles around. Old-fashioned carnival games and snack booths painted in pastel colours can be found throughout the 24-acre park. Hours of fun for everyone.
The Fabulous Times