Capitola claims to be the oldest seaside resort town on the Pacific Coast. In 1856 a pioneer acquired Soquel Landing, the lagoon and beach where Soquel Creek empties into the bay, and built a wharf. Another man opened a campground along the shore, and his daughter named it Capitola after a heroine in a novel series. After the train came to town, thousands of vacationers came to bask in the sun on the glorious beach.
Today’s Capitola-by-the-Sea is filled with boutiques, galleries, restaurants, cafes and historic bungalows covering several beachside blocks with one-way lanes. Lounge on the beach and watch the volleyball buffs, rent a kayak or lounge by the creekside gardens. At one time, nearly 90% of the world’s begonias came from Capitola, and for decades flower-laden boats celebrated this heritage at the annual Begonia Festival on Labor Day Weekend.
On summer weekends, park your car in the designated city lots and take the free trolley down to the village and beach.
Stop by the Capitola-Soquel Chamber of Commerce for info.
Toll-free phone: (800) 474-6522