Destination:
Santa Cruz County
San Lorenzo Valley

photo of Boulder Creek beach in the San Lorenzo Valley, Santa Cruz County, California
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Santa Cruz

Aptos

Capitola-Soquel

Davenport

San Lorenzo Valley

Watsonville

Calendar of Events

Accommodations

Attractions & Museums

Wineries

Restaurants

Recreation

Beaches & Parks

General Information

History

Introduction

Scotts Valley, Big Basin, Ben Lomond,
Boulder Creek, Brookdale, Bonny Doon, Felton

If Hollywood was to choose the ideal place for a story about independent mountain people, then the tiny towns of the San Lorenzo Valley would win in a heart beat. That's why it's no surprise that several movies have been filmed here against the backdrop of steep hillsides, lush meadows, and forests that nearly reach the clouds. Through it all, the San Lorenzo River makes its lazy journey from the summit to the sea.

A century ago these hills echoed with the rasping sounds of bucksaws, as loggers harvested millions of redwoods and Douglas fir to feed the housing needs of a growing country. Many of the best areas were clear-cut and left to regenerate on their own.

Fortunately, they did, giving us one more chance to appreciate and protect what nature put here. San Lorenzo Valley people are like that, too - strong and resilient, independent yet living in tight communities. These are sophisticated people who enjoy a quiet way of life. Many of them spend their workdays as engineers, technicians, and managers in the high-tech world of Silicon Valley. But they return home to the quiet of the forests and the small towns they love.

Their fine tastes are obvious. Browse through any of the small gallery shops along Highway 9, such as The Country Home, and you'll find the handiwork of many gifted local artisans. In many cases, their names are recognized on a regional and national level.

Valley restaurants reflect a broad choice of menus, from the upscale to the "down home." You'll find no cookie-cutter hostels in these parts, either. Instead, find respite in the Alpine motif of the Tyrolean Inn, the beautifully-appointed condos at the Boulder Creek Golf and Country Club, Brookdale Lodge "where the river runs through", or any one of the historic riverside lodges that have welcomed visitors for decades.

California's oldest state park - Big Basin - comprises much of the landscape, along with Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park, Fall Creek State Park, and Loch Lomond Recreation Area with its placid lake. For a really nostalgic view of the redwoods, hop aboard Roaring Camp's antique steam train for a ride through the ancient forest to a natural cathedral atop Bear Mountain.

Impressive? You bet! But it's just part of the everyday scene in Boulder Creek, Brookdale, Ben Lomond and Felton - the little gems of the San Lorenzo Valley.

For additional visitor information contact:
Santa Cruz County Conference & Visitors Council
1211 Ocean Street, Santa Cruz, CA 95060
(831) 425-1234 - Toll Free: (800) 833-3494 - Fax: (831) 425-1260
Email: comments@santacruzca.org

Santa Cruz ... Aptos ... Capitola-Soquel ... Davenport ... San Lorenzo Valley ... Watsonville
Calendar of Events ... Accommodations ... Attractions & Museums ... Wineries ... Restaurants
Recreation ... Beaches & Parks ... General Information ... History ... Introduction

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