Aptos is host to a variety of handsome residential communities, state parks, historic landmarks, schools, churches, small businesses, and Cabrillo Community College. It’s also the home of the first manned flight experiments of John Montgomery, which, incidentally, pre-date those of the Wright Brothers.
Visitor Attractions and Amenities
- Hotels, motels, B&Bs, vacation rentals, camping, RV
- Restaurants and shopping
- Beaches, biking, golfing, parks
- Special Attractions – SS Palo Alto “Cement Ship” on Seacliff Beach, Aptos Museum, Nisene Marks State Park, Hidden Beach and Park, Aptos Village Park
- Annual Events– World’s Shortest 4th of July Parade, Annual Blues Festival, Monte Foundation Fireworks, Sandman Triathlon and Duathlon, Santa Cruz Mountain Bike Festival
Neighborhoods and Communities
With dozens of vacation rentals, a small motel, and an RV park adjacent to Seacliff State Beach, vacationers have lots of accommodation options in this sheltered hideaway. Indoor and patio dining is available at several restaurants, or enjoy the local scene at the neighborhood tavern.
Gorgeous homes, many of them with ocean views, are plentiful in peaceful Rio Del Mar. These same panoramic views can be enjoyed from your campsite in the trees at New Brighton State Beach, the perfect spot for an afternoon picnic or a week-long camping retreat that’s close to civilization.
Seascape is a wonderful place to play and live! Quiet streets lined with homes of various sizes feed into the main road down to the Seascape Resort, an incredible, full-service resort overlooking the beach. Seascape Village offers a little shopping and great restaurants, and the Seascape Tennis Club is right across the street.
La Selva is a place like no other; a tiny, Midwestern town transported to the California coast. Residents come together in to celebrate the 4th of July, Saint Patrick’s Day, and Halloween in the postage-stamp sized downtown area, which includes an old clubhouse/community center, a small, corner store, a library, a church, and a few local businesses. Homes range from comfortable to palatial, and the homeowner’s association maintains the private, locked beach, and key admission is available to only to dues-paying residents. Manresa State Beach is right next door, and the KOA Campgrounds are just down the way.
Also known as the Aptos Hills, the lovely Larkin Valley area is peppered with apple orchards, old farmhouses, and small cluster neighborhoods.
“Out in the middle of nowhere” aptly describes Corralitos, a lovely region where your closest neighbor is within shouting distance. Sparsely populated and private, visitors come here from all parts of Santa Cruz County and beyond to shop at the famous Corralitos Meat Market.
Between Corralitos and northeastern Watsonville is the wide-open countryside of Amesti, where farmers harvest many different crops and visitors come to enjoy the camping, boating, and bike trails of Pinto Lake County Park.