dcsimg

Overview

Introduction to Santa Cruz, California

Situated on the northern part of Monterey Bay, the California city of Santa Cruz lies about 30 miles southwest of San Jose and 74 miles south of San Francisco. Incorporated in 1866, the city is the county seat for the County of Santa Cruz. The principal industries of Santa Cruz are tourism, agriculture, manufacturing, and education (University of California at Santa Cruz is located here). The city's proximity to Silicon Valley has in recent years also brought an influx of workers in high-tech industries into Santa Cruz and its surrounding towns.

Santa Cruz was founded in 1769 by Spanish explorer Don Gaspar de Portola, who named the area after the Spanish name for "Holy Cross". In the late 1800s, agriculture, logging, lime processing, and commercial fishing were the thriving industries. By the turn of the century, tourism took hold as a major industry and prospered to this day, thanks to the city's scenic beauty, mild climate, abundant sunshine, and 29 miles of coastline. The quintessential beach town often referred to as "Surf City" (despite the fact that Huntington Beach trademarked the moniker), Santa Cruz lays claim to being the place where Hawaiian royalty first introduced surfing to the U.S. mainland.

Things to do in Santa Cruz

Santa Cruz is famous for its beaches and for the sport of surfing. The Santa Cruz Surfing Museum, housed in the Mark Abbott Memorial Lighthouse, traces more than a century worth of surfing history associated with Santa Cruz. Museum visitors enjoy a spectacular view of the city and the Monterey Bay while overlooking the famed surfing site known as Steamer Lane. The Santa Cruz Boardwalk, the West Coast's last remaining seaside amusement park, offers more than 30 rides, arcades, food, an indoor miniature golf course and over 15 gift shops. The Cocoanut Grove complex hosts trade shows, conventions, conferences, parties, banquets and more. The Santa Cruz Wharf is famous for its views of marine mammals, its fishing, and other recreational activities.

Included among the cultural offerings in Santa Cruz is the annual summer festival held by Shakespeare Santa Cruz. Typical performances include two Shakespeare plays and one other play. Some of the performances take place in a unique outdoor space among the redwoods. Santa Cruz is also home to the Cabrillo Music Festival. Local Santa Cruz museums include the Natural History Museum and the Surfing Museum.

The nearby city of San Jose, located only a half-hour away, is home to a number of its own attractions. A few of the more prominent are the Winchester Mystery House, the Tech Museum of Innovation, the Rosicrucian Egyptian Museum, the Children's Discovery Museum, and the History Museum of San Jose. Sports fans can see Minor League Baseball action (Triple-A's San Jose Giants), Arena Football League action (San Jose SaberCats), and the National Hockey League's San Jose Sharks.

Fans of alternative sports will recognize Santa Cruz as home to the De Laveaga Disc Golf Course, which hosts several PDGA (Professional Disc Golf Association) tournaments, including the annual Masters Cup. De Laveaga was the host venue for the disc golf and discathon World Disc Games overall event held in July 2005. The event was sanctioned by the WFDF (World Flying Disc Federation).

People

Total Population 62,045
Male Share of the Population 49.3%
Female Share of the Population 50.7%
Senior Citizens 8.9%
Employed Population 16+ 30,746
Age of the Population 29

Families

% of people married 28.4%
Average household size 3

Education and Earnings

Population % with Bachelor Degree or Higher 49.4%
Median Earnings25+ $36,923
Median Earnings Without High School Qualification $22,852
Median Earnings With High School Degree $26,870

Wealth

Median Family Income $79,431
% Above Poverty Level 75.7%
% Below Poverty Level 24.3%

Commute & Sprawl

Average Commute Time 22 minutes
% Working from Home 6.5%
% Walking and Biking to Work 19.6%
% Using Public Transportation 6%

Housing

People Living Alone 31.8%
Median Gross Rent $1,547
Median House Value $645,600

Ancestry

Other(often includes Hispanic and African American) 37.9%
US/American 0.5%
English 10.7%
Irish 12.1%

Santa Cruz Almanac

Category Value
Nearest Large City 26 miles S of San Jose, California
County Santa Cruz
Standard Zip Codes 95060, 95062, 95064, 95065, 95066
P.O. Box Zip Codes 95061, 95063, 95067
Phone Area Codes 831
Time Zone Pacific (-8 hours from GMT)
Daylight Savings The city observes Daylight Saving Time.
Latitude 36.974
Longitude -122.029

Santa Cruz Climate

Nearest Weather Stations

Notes:

  • Temp ranges are avg daily min and max for the month
  • Precipitation is rainfall (and rainfall equiv of snowfall)

Station SANTA CRUZ
Distance 2.6 miles
Jan Temp 40 to 61 F
Apr Temp 44 to 69 F
Jul Temp 53 to 75 F
Oct Temp 48 to 73 F
Annual Precip 30.6 inches
Station WATSONVILLE WATERWORKS
Distance 14.8 miles
Jan Temp 39 to 61 F
Apr Temp 45 to 68 F
Jul Temp 53 to 72 F
Oct Temp 48 to 72 F
Annual Precip 23.2 inches
Station GILROY
Distance 25.6 miles
Jan Temp 39 to 60 F
Apr Temp 47 to 73 F
Jul Temp 56 to 88 F
Oct Temp 50 to 79 F
Annual Precip 20.6 inches

Neighborhood and Nearby Area Names

According to the US Postal Service, Santa Cruz, its neighborhoods, and/or surrounding areas are also referred to as:

Bonny Doon (95060)

Paradise Park (95060)

Note that not all alternate names are acceptable for use in US Post Office addresses.

Nearby Cities and Towns

Location Population Median Family Income
Capitola 10,043 $81,133
Los Gatos 30,163 $157,796
Monte Sereno 3,462 $238,606
Saratoga 30,627 $197,332
Scotts Valley 11,711 $115,324
Watsonville 52,085 $48,957

Santa Cruz Public Libraries

Library
Santa Cruz Libraries
1543 PACIFIC AVE.
Santa Cruz, California
(831) 420-5600

library logo

More Information for Librarians

Santa Cruz Hospitals

SUTTER MATERNITY AND SURGERY CENTER
(Voluntary non-profit - Private)
2900 CHANTICLEER AVENUE
(831) 477-2200
Emergency Service: No

DOMINICAN HOSPITAL
(Voluntary non-profit - Church)
1555 SOQUEL DRIVE
(831) 462-7700
Emergency Service: Yes

These schools offer particularly quick info upon request, and we have written detailed profiles for each (click school names to see the profiles). Request info from multiple schools, by clicking the Request Info links.
 
Results:  5
Matching School Ads
Programs
  • Executive Master of Health Administration
  • Master of Public Health
  • Located in the heart of Washington, D.C. the Milken Institute School of Public Health at the George Washington University is dedicated to advancing the health of local, national and global communities.

    You need to have a Bachelor’s degree to be qualified for this school.

Programs
  • Master of Science in Communicative Sciences and Disorders
Programs
  • Master of Science in Communications
  • Communications@Syracuse is an online Master of Science in Communications from the world-renowned S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University.
     

Programs
  • Bookkeeping
  • Veterinary Assistant
  • HVACR Technician
  • Advance your career with our affordable, self-paced, career-focused distance education programs.

Santa Cruz High Schools

(Sorted by Number of Students)

SANTA CRUZ HIGH
415 WALNUT AVE.
831-429-3960
Title I eligible, not participating.
Serves 1,179 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 26.1

HARBOR HIGH
300 LAFONDA AVE.
831-429-3810
Title I eligible, not participating.
Serves 1,177 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 27.1

PACIFIC COLLEGIATE
900 HIGH STREET
831-479-7785
A Charter School.
Serves 366 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 17.1

SANTA CRUZ COUNTY COMMUNITY
3650 GRAHAM HILL RD.
831-479-5331
A Non-traditional School
Serves 307 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 14

ALTERNATIVE FAMILY EDUCATION (AFE)
300 LA FONDA AVE.
831-429-3432
A Non-traditional School
Serves 189 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 26.6

ARK ALTERNATIVE
313 SWIFT ST.
831-429-3432
A Non-traditional School
Title I eligible, not participating.
Serves 169 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 22.2

LOMA PRIETA HIGH (CONT.)
319 LAFONDA AVE.
831-429-3854
A Non-traditional School
Title I eligible, not participating.
Serves 115 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 19.2

DELTA CHARTER
343 SOQUEL AVE. #44
831-458-0406
A Charter School.
Serves 54 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 15.4

BEN LOMOND YOUTH CONSERVATION CAMP
13575 EMPIRE GRADE RD
831-423-1652
Serves 44 students.
Student/teacher ratio: 44

Additional Details
Santa Cruz Careers
Santa Cruz career and employment information.
Santa Cruz Colleges
Santa Cruz colleges and trade schools.
Santa Cruz Graduate Schools
Santa Cruz Graduate and Business Schools
Study Online in Santa Cruz
Matching School Ads

Career and College Resources

Real-World Career Reports
Career References and Original Articles
College Directories and Lists
Additional Resources
Info for Santa Cruz Government Officials


Are you an official in the Santa Cruz government or quasi-government agency such as the chamber of commerce, visitors bureau or economic development council? If so, visit our information page for government officials to see how CityTownInfo can support you.

Back to Top