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Sandy beach
Yes
Hike-in Required
No
Surfing
Yes
Snorkeling / SCUBA
No
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

Seabright State Beach remains a little less crowded than the nearby the Boardwalk Beach, and it is a dog-friendly beach with fire pits and restrooms. The Santa Cruz Breakwater Lighthouse, also known as the Walton Lighthouse, is located at the mouth of the Santa Cruz Harbor. It was dedicated in 2002 and helps the area mariners navigate the mouth; instead of a typical beam of light, a green signal light flashes at the top every four seconds. There is a path to view the lighthouse, but be cautious if the waves are high. 

The harbor is a great location to view the sea lions and otters enjoying the area's plentiful hunting grounds. A natural rock wall separates Seabright from the Boardwalk Beach, and a tiny hole connecting the two beaches is accessible during low tide if you wish to explore further. Many people like to paddle around the harbor and out into the ocean. You can enter the beach in two locations. The main entrance is near the Santa Cruz Museum of Natural History on East Cliff Drive; an alternate entrance lies near the harbor off of Atlantic Avenue and is a good alternative if there is no parking near the main entrance.   

Logistics + Planning

Congestion

Moderate

Parking Pass

Not Required

Pros

Large beach. Fire pits. Free parking. Dog friendly.

Cons

None.

Features

ADA accessible
Historically significant
Lighthouse
Surfing
Whale watching
Wildlife
Wildlife
Bird watching

Location

Field Guide

Nearby Adventures

San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, California
San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, California
San Francisco Peninsula + Santa Cruz, California

Comments

11/22/2015
It was a very active day for the sea wildlife! Thousands of birds and a few whale spottings!
09/12/2015
Went to Seabright Beach this morning hoping to get a decent sunrise. I like to come here early in the morning because I am usually the only one. I can also take my dog for a peaceful walk along the beach.

The foggy marine layer beat me to the beach but I still got some decent night shots.
The Walton Lighthouse at Seabright Beach is an easy to get to location with plenty of photography potential. Just a quick walk along the harbor, and you have a great viewpoint to watch the sun rise.
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