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lodging for solo traveler 2 nights in January

Rocky River, Ohio
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lodging for solo traveler 2 nights in January

Hi .. I'll be in San Francisco for a few nights in late January for business. I've never been to the west coast (I'm in Cleveland), so I thought I might spend a couple extra nights and visit Santa Cruz. Santa Cruz appeals to me a little more because it seems to be more laid back than San Francisco, and I would really just like a couple days of R&R, explore a little, walk on the beach, take a walk, check out the redwoods, etc. I'm trying to decide on lodging and am thinking on staying closer to East Cliff Drive and Sunny Cove versus the Boardwalk area. I'll be a lone female traveler, and I'm worried that the boardwalk area might be a little more seedy and a bit more dangerous. The only motels I can find in the area I'm interested in are Bella Notte, Pelican Point, Ocean Echo Cottages and Sunny Cove. Ocean Echo is more than I want to spend, and Bella Notte and Pelican Point are a little pricier than I like too. I've contacted Sunny Cove for a price but haven't heard back. Are there any other motels in that area? Or should I look back toward the Boardwalk area? If I go there, I was looking at the Comfort Inn or Super 8 but really didn't spend a lot of time researching that area. I'd like to spend under $100/night if possible. Any help would be greatly appreciated! Thank you!!

Santa Cruz...
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1. Re: lodging for solo traveler 2 nights in January

You don't want to stay right at the Boardwalk, and that includes the Comfort Inn and Super 8 and any other motel that has the name "Boardwalk" in the name.

If you move towards the Municipal Wharf there is the Dream Inn ($$$) and several motels I would look at the Seaway Inn, It is on a slight hill above the Dream Inn on West Cliff Drive, where you can walk west along the water past Lighthouse Point with its surfers and small surfing museum, admire the houses and go as far as Natural Bridges State Park, which right now has the wonderful migrating Monarch Butterflies spending the winter. Other motels you might look at in this area are the Beach Street Inn or the Coastview Inn. The West Cliff Inn, also there, is a wonderful Victorian Bed and Breakfast, which is going to be more expensive, and the Sea and Sand Inn, next door to the Dream Inn, ditto.

If you can get a motel on East Cliff Drive for under $100, please check it out carefully. I am sorry to say that I do not know of a place I would stay in Santa Cruz for that price. That is, if I could even find one. Santa Cruz is a tourist venue and prices reflect that, even in off season.

East Cliff Drive in the area you are talking about is fine, but there isn't much to see or do there.

San Jose, California
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2. Re: lodging for solo traveler 2 nights in January

I agree with Puter. The Boardwalk isn't a good area to stay in, but near the Wharf and along West Cliff Drive are good. East Cliff Drive is also good. But if you find a room under $100/night, definitely check it out thoroughly before booking.

Rocky River, Ohio
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3. Re: lodging for solo traveler 2 nights in January

Hi all .. thanks for your input. The places on East Cliff I was looking at were a little over $100/night and I'm fine with that, but when I saw there were many places well under $100, I thought I may as well shoot for that target. But if the Boardwalk area is to be avoided (as I sort of anticipated), so be it.

I kind of liked the East Cliff area because the little cove was close to walk to, but if the cliffs that I want to see and most of the sightseeing is on the western side, I'm fine with focusing in that area. Obviously, I know nothing about the area.

Of the places that Puter mentioned, I'm leaning towards the Seaway (I like the little outdoor seating, etc.), but it looks like I'd be on a wide road with a big hotel obstructing any view. The Coastview inn appears to be in a better location, but it looks a little shoddy. Sea and Sand is sold out, and the others cost more than I want to spend.

So, will I have any kind of view from the Seaway? Is it tough to walk to the beach with the big hotel on the other side of the road? Are there restaurants within walking distance? Also, if you have suggestions for things to do, I'd love to hear them. I'll probably be arriving around 3:30 on a Thursday, and then departing Saturday morning, so I'll have a full day on Friday.

Thank you soooo much for your help!

Santa Cruz...
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4. Re: lodging for solo traveler 2 nights in January

The Seaway Inn is on a slight hill so you have a view, although not a full view, around the Dream Inn. West Cliff Drive is not a 'wide' street.

>>> Is it tough to walk to the beach with the big hotel on the other side of the road? Are there restaurants within walking distance? <<

Let me see if I can explain this. The Dream Inn is next to the entrance of the Municipal Wharf, the longest one in California. It is full of restaurants and shops, There is a very amusing colony of sea lions who live there. There is a beach in front of the Dream Inn. It is not a private beach. In California beaches are not "private", they belong to "us". Next to the Wharf on the other side is also a long and wide beach which goes to the river. It fronts the Boardwalk, but no worry.

However, read my message #1 again. >>>West Cliff Drive, where you can walk west along the water past Lighthouse Point with its surfers and small surfing museum, admire the houses and go as far as Natural Bridges State Park, which right now has the wonderful migrating Monarch Butterflies spending the winter.<<<

Along this walk there are several beaches you can access, but the walk itself is the main attraction. You will not find this in the East Cliff Drive location. It is somewhat isolated from restaurants, sights, etc.

From here you can also walk, several blocks, however, to Pacific Avenue, the main street of Santa Cruz with more restaurants than you can count, and boutiques and coffee houses, and art galleries.

Here is a Traveler Article which explains the town better than I can in this message.

http://tinyurl.com/cy7nl3c

Santa Cruz...
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5. Re: lodging for solo traveler 2 nights in January

I agree with Puter and think that a good first choice is staying on the "West side". That being said, I understand travelling on a budget and if Bella Notte or others that are more East would fit your budget I would go for it. You can walk to the harbor and twin lakes beach easily from there or drive and park on West Cliff Drive for a walk and visit to see the Monarchs. Three are restaurants close to both areas that you can get to easily.

Enjoy the trip!

Rocky River, Ohio
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6. Re: lodging for solo traveler 2 nights in January

Turns out the Seaway Inn was about the same price as Bella Notte, so I've taken the suggestions and booked it. I'd prefer to be in a location where I can leave my car parked and just walk wherever I may want to go. And thanks, Puter, for the link about Santa Cruz in general. Gave me some ideas to add to my (currently nonexistent) itinerary. I still have a lot to figure out so I'm sure I'll be posting more questions in a new post over the weekend. Please keep an eye out and, if you have time, offer up any advice you may be willing to share. Thanks so much!

Annapolis
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7. Re: lodging for solo traveler 2 nights in January

I was going to suggest the condo that I just stayed at at 22108 E Cliff Drive. They have a two night minimum, and the end of January it is not very expensive at all, around 145 a night. It is 2 bedrooms, 2 baths, but RIGHT on the beach, with a wonderful deck to sit out on and watch the surf. And you would be able to have breakfast and lunch at home if you chose. Just a thought...

Rocky River, Ohio
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8. Re: lodging for solo traveler 2 nights in January

Do you have a link for this rental unit?

Santa Cruz, CA
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9. Re: lodging for solo traveler 2 nights in January

Two places I'd check out if you are interested in parking your car and walking. First, the Babbling Brook Inn. Right downtown. Second, The Adobe on Green Street, also right downtown on Mission Hill. I think they have weeknights in winter at $129. Not sure about pricing at Babbling Brook.

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10. Re: lodging for solo traveler 2 nights in January

We just spent 3 nights at The West Cliff Inn and were very pleased with our stay there. They offer alot of special amenities like a wine and cheese reception and very good breakfast buffet in the morning. :)