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Our Staff Picks are your guide to stay 'in the know' when you go. Whether you're planning to hang ten or take five, checkout our blog to find the best local attractions, events and activities to keep you entertained while you stay in Santa Cruz. There's no shortage of things to do. From mild to wild, there's something for everyone here. 

Santa Cruz, California’s Original Surf Town

Santa Cruz, California’s Original Surf Town

March 02, 2021

If surfing is what you’re in search of, you’ve come to the right place! A laid-back, hang-ten type of destination, Santa Cruz is California’s original surf town. Surfing was first discovered in Hawaii and rode on longboards with no fin, but as legend has it, 1885 surfing was first introduced to the mainland United States by three Hawaiian royals. The three nephews of King Kalakaua had been stationed to stay on the mainland, where they took to the redwood forest to recreate their beloved boards. With new boards in hand, the three young Hawaiian royals tried their hand at surfing in the San Lorenzo River, three decades before Olympian Duke Kahanamoku made his way onto the scene. Now that you’re armed with a bit of knowledge about the origin of the sport, pick up a board or sign up for lessons at one of the many surf shops around Cowell Beach. Paddle out in our historic bay while daydreaming about all the legends who have taken to the waves before you.

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