Santa Cruz boardwalk

I’m doing a walk tomorrow along the coast from Wilder Ranch south to the Santa Cruz beach boardwalk. We’re packing sandwiches for the walk, and taking an Uber back to our car.

Is there anything worth eating at the Boardwalk or on the approach? Snacks, full meals, anything that’s not tourist garbage?

How is the Picnic Basket, and if we venture into downtown, how is Lupulo Craft Beer house? Any other recommendations that’ll be open mid-day?

When you just get into the west side of town, near Natural Bridges state beach, there is a newish hub of eateries that has grown out of an industrial park. West End Tap & Kitchen might be worth checking out. There’s also Kelly’s French Bakery and a Gary’s Old Fashioned Snappy Dogs cart. I have not been to those. Santa Cruz Mountain Brewery is also there and a fun place. Just a few blocks away is el Salchichero which bills itself as handcrafted charcuterie with locally raised and hand-cut meats.

Enjoy your walk and let us know what you end up visiting.


The Picnic Basket is actually quite decent for breakfast and lunch.

Second this, I’ve had good sandwiches from Picnic Basket.

I went to SCB over the summer and it really is a food wasteland. Whatever you do, avoid the overpriced casual wine bar downtown. It’s awful food and service!

I recommend saving your appetite and stopping at Shadowbrook in Capitola for a nice dinner on the way back. Make sure you reserve in advance and take the cable car from the parking lot!

From my friend’s blog:

Thanks for the recommendations! We will be sure to follow up on them when we do our next walk, from the Santa Cruz boardwalk in the southward direction. After finishing our packed lunches, I… er… filled up on chocolate covered graham crackers so wasn’t hungry when we hit Santa Cruz this time around :slight_smile:

The walk coincided with a beautiful day, and we got to see more brussels sprouts than you can imagine, as well as artichokes and green onions here and there. The only food for sale that we encountered before hitting a fully urban area, well before Picnic Basket, was Steamer Lane Supply at Lighthouse Field. I snapped the above photo, and was tempted to grab a Marianne’s ice cream bar from a display case. I found a description in the Santa Cruz Sentinel and review of their pre-brick and mortar operation.

On the drive back to SF, we stopped at Swanton Berry Farm and then had an early dinner at The Barn in Half Moon Bay. I’ll post about those in another thread.

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Thanks for the recs Hyper . Santa Cruz is my home . Always wanted to try the fish tacos from the food truck parked at Steamers Lane .