Twenty miles northwest of Santa Cruz, Año Nuevo State Natural Reserve is home base for one of the world's largest mainland breeding colonies of northern elephant seals. Last entry is at 3:30pm.
Historic buildings from all over San Jose have been brought together in this open-air history museum, southeast of the city center in Kelley Park. The centerpiece is a dramatic half-scale replica of the 237ft-high 1…
With a strong permanent collection of 20th-century works and a variety of imaginative changing exhibits, the city’s central art museum is one of the Bay Area’s finest. The main building started life as the post offi…
Five miles north, Pescadero State Beach & Marsh Natural Preserve attract beachcombers and birders.
At Moss Beach, this marine reserve protects tidepools teeming with sea life, best viewed at low tide.
The farm shop sells creamy artisanal goat cheeses festooned with fruit, nuts and a rainbow of edible flowers. Call ahead for a weekend farm tour (from $25) or show up anytime to pat the heads of the goats out back.
About 5 miles south of the town of Pacifica, it's a local favorite for its pristine sand.