#1 Municipal Wharf
Lifeguard service is provided during Spring weekends, daily in Summer months and Fall weekends. Service hours are usually from 10:00 - 7:00, but may vary depending on the weather conditions. Service area is from Cowell’s Beach to the San Lorenzo River.
A permit is required to conduct commercial surfing lessons in the City of Santa Cruz. For surf school regulations see ordinance (13.14). Note that all surf schools are required to have their students and instructors wear colored vests while conducting lessons. Permitted surf schools with their vest colors are as follows:
Adventure Out - Red
Club Ed - Blue
Richard Schmidt Surf School - Purple
To report violations or for questions about concerns on the ordinance, call the Parks and Recreation Department at (831) 420-5270.
Reserve the Beach
Reserve the beach for everything from sporting events to weddings or corporate events. Check the Conditions of Use and call 831-420-5270 or email us. Click here to visit the Fire Department website for Beach Wheelchair information.
No Alcohol allowed on Santa Cruz City Beaches. No bonfire pits available on Main or Cowell Beach.
- Gas and charcoal grills are allowed on the beach but if the lifeguard or City staff deems the grill unsafe or too large, you will be told to leave.
- Beachgoers will be cited if caught burying coals in the sand.
- Used coals (after extinguished) MUST be transported off the beach.
- Used coals can be taken to a dumping station located at Third Street and the Beach Boardwalk.