A Guide to Santa Cruz Destination Weddings

An Overview of Santa Cruz County for Out-Of-Town Brides & Grooms

Santa Cruz County is known for its beautiful beaches, redwood forests and gorgeous, rugged coastline. Where in Santa Cruz can you find your favorite wedding setting? This article describes the geography of the county and links out to video of top wedding venues.

image-of-colorful-beach-rentals-in-Capitola

Capitola, officially named Capitola by the Sea, reminds many of the Mediterranean.

Map-of-the-Monterey-Bay

A map of the Monterey Bay

Quick Geography: Santa Cruz is located about 75 miles south of San Francisco. We’re at the top of the Monterey Bay, and Monterey is at the bottom. Mountains to the north separate us from San Jose.

Description of Regions in Santa Cruz County

COASTAL AREAS – Top coastal cities and villages for Monterey Bay beach weddings include Rio Del Mar, Capitola, Santa Cruz, Aptos and Seascape.
These coastal areas include wide open beaches, cozy coves, oceanside cliffs and rolling hills.

Is a Santa Cruz beach wedding “safe” weather-wise? You can be virtually assured of  wedding-perfect weather from June through September, and Indian summers here are especially beautiful. Rains begin in mid-October.

For backup, you can plan your wedding with one of the area’s many bed & breakfasts, hotels and resorts.

NORTHERN & CENTRAL INLAND AREASINCLUDES WINERIES – The northern and central inlands include Scotts Valley, Boulder Creek, Bonny Doon, Soquel and Ben Lomand. These small communities are nestled among redwoods in the many miles of beautiful green mountains that hug the Santa Cruz County coast.

Wedding venues in this area range from rustic to elegant and include vineyards, private ranches, state parks, golf courses, hotels and lodges. Expect wooded hideaways with stunning views of the Pacific.

SOUTHERN INLAND AREAS – The southernmost inland areas of Santa Cruz County include Watsonville and Freedom. A wide open plain has made the area ideal for establishing picturesque farming communities. Watsonville has many rural areas but includes a bustling downtown.

See video of Santa Cruz wedding venues from our featured wedding locations.

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