San Francisco to Santa Cruz

Making the most of our last morning in San Francisco, we visited Golden Gate Park. The first day of actual warm weather since we arrived here, we headed across green lawns, an oasis of beauty and calm on the edge of a very man made city. At the De Young Museum within the park, there is a free observation deck on the ninth floor which afforded us 360 degree views across Golden Gate Park and beyond.

We enjoyed a wander in the sun past lily ponds, fountains and the bandstand. Complete with a brass band playing, music filling the air, it reminded us very much of our Dad.

Once we had picked up our rental car, we jumped straight on Highway 1 at Pacifico and drove down a sunny but still foggy coast. In Santa Cruz we met a very friendly parking attendant who was very happy to recommend places to eat and drink, and gave us a map of the area.

We walked onto the main beach and down the length of the boardwalk, eating ice cream and muffins. For the views at sunset, we went on the Sky Glider and then couldn’t resist the exhilarating Giant Dipper – amazing fun!! It’s the fifth oldest coaster in the US and was lit up with 3,150 lights.

Later in the evening, we checked into Ramada Inn, Santa Cruz. Lovely and warm, the big room had nice furniture and bathroom, a fridge, microwave, two double beds and fluffy pillows, plus free wifi and continental breakfast so we were happy. We had a delicious Italian dinner at Caffe Lucio, my sister recommends the Wild Mushroom and Kale Ravioli!

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