Cruisin' in Santa Cruz

Shopping on Pacific Street
I was in Santa Cruz, California over the weekend for my daughter's college orientation and we had a lot of fun exploring the campus as well as the town of Santa Cruz. Even though we have traveled quite a bit throughout California, Santa Cruz is a town we did not know well. This trip, we had the chance to walk around town and explore a little more.
The main shopping area in town is Pacific Street, which has loads of charm. There are many well known shops, like Urban Outfitters, Gap and Borders Books, but mainly the shops are independently owned (tomorrow, I will show you my favorite shop!). We found lots of cute restaurants as well. Tim as particularly taken with the sidewalk "Fast Food" Kiosks like Alfresco. Check out their deliciously fresh and healthy menu!

Alfresco in Santa Cruz
And of course, I was charmed by the vintage tables surrounding the kiosk...

No trip to Santa Cruz is quite complete without a visit to the Beach and the Santa Cruz Boardwalk. It was a beautiful day on Friday when we got to town, and I couldn't resist taking a few snapshots.

Main Beach in Santa Cruz
The Boardwalk was crowded and full of energetic color. We had to try the cinnamon covered almonds and the chocolate dipped ice cream cones. (I was saving the deep-fried Snickers bar for Sunday trip to the State Fair with my girls.) Here's what caught my eye at the Boardwalk:

Sky Gondolas at the Santa Cruz Boardwalk

The Giant Dipper Roller Coaster...first opened in 1925

Sea Swings, the Boardwalks newest ride
Palm trees lining Beach Street
It was a quick trip, but there will be many more to come now that we have the perfect excuse to visit!