"Capitola" Capitola by MDH

Capitola Travel Guide: 42 reviews and 89 photos

Santa Cruz's Sister and Suburb

Sitting east of Santa Cruz along the northern Monterey Bay coast, Capitola is a city in its own right. Although it's technically a suburb of Santa Cruz (and many locals sometimes think as an extension), Capitola is decidedly different. Smaller. A bit more conservative than its neighbor. A bit more "small-town" in feeling. But still equally just as neat to explore and spend time at. Capitola-by-the-Sea has a great downtown (or village as they call it) and a small compact layout that's easy to explore by foot or bike.

The town's been around since 1857, when Italian immigrants established a small fishing colony around a just-completed wharf. Over the years, railroads connected Capitola with Santa Cruz and the rest of the Bay Area. By around 1920, Capitola was a major vacation spot. Well, if Santa Cruz was too crowded, tourists reasoned, there was always Capitola.

Today, Capitola is still a huge tourist draw, but it's much more calm and civilized now than in the early days. Come check it out for yourself.

Pros and Cons
  • Pros:Very charming, lovely weather for most of the year, clean, safe; a good alternative to Santa Cruz.
  • Cons:Parking can be a little hard in the summer months when people flock to the beach.
  • In a nutshell:It's a great little town that has a lot to see in a very short distance.
  • Intro Written May 24, 2003
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