Capitola Beach Activities

Santa Cruz County

Nearby Activities and Events

Surfer's Path Marathon

May 19, 2019
Marathon and Half Marathon or Relay
Marathon stars at 7:00 AM
Starts at Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk
Surfer's Path Marathon

O'Neill Surf Shop

1115 41st Ave.
Capitola, CA
(831) 475-4151
Purchase or rent surfboards, wetsuits, and boogie boards

Capitola Historical Museum

410 Capitola Ave.
Capitola, CA
(831) 464-0322
Open Wednesday, Friday-Sunday, Noon to 4:00 PM
Capitola Museum
Capitola Self Guided Walking Tour Map

Epicenter Cycling
Bike Rentals

8035 Soquel Dr., #23
Aptos, CA
(831) 662-8100
Ride from their shop into Nisene Marks Park or around the area.
Mountain bikes and cruisers for as little as $15 for 2 hours.
Epicenter Cycling

Soquel Creek Trail

Walk along Soquel Creek starting on the east side of the Stockton Bridge. Watch for birds in the trees and ducks on the water. Ocasionally a snowy egret or great herons are spotted fishing in the creek.

Surfing California

Pier Fishing

Capitola Beach Annual Events

Capitola Beach Fesival 2019

September TBA, 2019
The new Capitola Village Beach Festival is meant to take the place of some of the festivities from the now retired Begonia Festival. Planned events include a sand castle contest, rowboat contests, horseshoe tournament, fishing derby, and children's art events. Instead of the begonia boat parade they are looking at a parade of LED illuminated boats down Soquel Creek on Saturday night.
Capitola Village Events

Capitola Kite Classic

May 2019   Open to all ages and skill levels. On Capitola City Beach. Register at 11:00 AM. 11:00 AM - 2:00 PM
Capitola Recreatiion

Annual Capitola Rod & Custom Classic Car Show

June 8-9, 2019
Held on the Esplanade next to Capitola Beach, features over 300 cars, vendors, music, trophies.
Capitola Rod & Custom Classic

Wharf to Wharf Race

July 28, 2019
Runners start in Santa Cruz and wind their way along the coast to Capitola. Live bands line the route. Race begins at 8:30 AM.
Wharf to Wharf Race

Art and Jazz at the Beach

Sundays through the summer
Live jazz on the Esplanade Stage with local artists' works displayed in the Esplanade Park next to the beach.

Twilight Concerts

Wednesdays, June - August 2019
On the Esplanade Stage from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM, enjoy a variety of music such as western, swing, rock and roll, Latin, jazz, and orchestra. Bring a picnic dinner and chairs and sit at the park or on the beach. Bring warm coats or a blanket as it can get chilly in the evening if the fog rolls in.
Twilight Concerts 2018

Movies on the Beach

August 23, 30 September 6 and 13, 2019
Enjoy a movie on the beach. Bring a chair, flashlight, and blanket. Seating begins at 6:30 PM, movie starts at 7:30 PM. Free popcorn from 7:00 to 7:30 PM.
Movies on the Beach

Art & Wine Festival

September TBA, 2019
In Capitola Village, two days of fine art, wine, gourmet food, entertainment, children's art. 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM (5:00 PM on Sunday)
Capitola-Soquel Chamber of Commerce: Art & Wine Festival

Mermaid Triathlon and Duathlon

October 5 2019
At Capitola Beach, a women and girls' triathlon and duathlon event beginning at 7:20 AM.
Mermaid Series

Into the Capitola Surf

Swimming and Surfing at Capitola Beach

Known for is usually light surf, Capital Beach is a favorite place for families to enjoy a relaxed day at the beach. As with virtually everywhere along the California coast, rip currents are always a danger. The gentle surf makes Capitola a good place for launching paddle boards and kayaks. Boogie boarders do well in the area between the small jetty and the large jetty.

Caution: Check with rangers or lifeguards that conditions are safe for your planned activities.

Avoid swimming in Soquel Creek and close to where it empties into the ocean at Capitola Beach. Water quality in the creek is poor.
Santa Cruz County Water Quality Reports

Surfers find good waves at the far end of the beach near the jetty. The area is popular with beginning surfers, although at low tide rocks can be a danger. Often the water is flat, but at times it can produce 3 to 5 foot waves.
City of Capitola Beach Camera
Monterey Bay Area Water Temperatures

Capitola Beach Company

Rentals for Stand up Paddle Boards, Surf Boards, Body Boards, Wetsuits, Beach Chairs, and Beach Umbrellas. Look for their rental trailer at Esplanade Park next to the beach.
Surf and Stand up Paddle Board Lessons
131 Monterey Ave., Capitola, CA
(831) 462-5222 Capitola Beach Company

Capitola Surf and Paddle

Personalized instruction for private or group standup paddle board lessons.
318 Riverview Ave., Capitola, CA
(831) 435-6503 Capitola Surf and Paddle

Fishing off the Wharf

The 855-foot long pier at Capitola is a popular gathering place for anglers, but it never gets overcrowded. Some fishermen rent boats or launch their own, while others line the railing.

Capitola Wharf at Capitola Beach, CA

Closer to the shore in the surf zone anglers are generally after barred and calico surfperch, while out toward the end of the pier they have a good variety of fish ready to strike their bait: sole, flounder, sand dabs, jacksmelt, perch, and California halibut. Occasionally you will see someone land a shark or striped bass.

Wharf Facilities

On the wharf you will find the Wharf House Restaurant and the Capitola Boat and Bait Shop, along with fish cleaning stations and restrooms.

Capitola Boat and Bait Shop:

  • Rents ocean skiffs with 8 HP outboards. The boats hold up to four people.
  • They sell and rent rods and reels.
  • Their tackle shop has everything you need from sinkers and hooks to frozen and live bait.
  • They also rent kayaks and water bikes.

Ocean Safety

California State Parks and Recreation cautions that "large surf, cold water temperatures, backwash, sudden drop-offs, pounding shorebreak, and dangerous rip currents can turn what seem like safe activities such as playing near the surf line, wading, or climbing on rock outcroppings, deadly." Learn more about ocean safety at CA State Parks: Ocean Safety

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