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Natural Bridges State Beach

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Address: 2531 W Cliff Dr, Santa Cruz, CA
Phone Number:
+1 831-423-4609
Today
08:00 - 18:00
Open now
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 08:00 - 18:00
Description:

A refuge for wintering Monarch Butterflies, this park boasts a sandy cove,...

A refuge for wintering Monarch Butterflies, this park boasts a sandy cove, tidepools, a nature trail through the Butterfly Preserve, and several hiking trails. There is also a bicycle path around the perimeter of the park.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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  • 285
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  • 175
    Very good
  • 57
    Average
  • 5
    Poor
  • 1
    Terrible
Love seeing the Butterflies

The rangers had out several telescopes in which you could get great close up views of the Butterflies. The butterflies are located down a canyon next to the visitor center.

5 of 5 bubblesReviewed 5 days ago
DJ B
,
Mountain View, California
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552 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 523: English reviews
Mountain View, California
Level Contributor
35 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 5 days ago NEW

The rangers had out several telescopes in which you could get great close up views of the Butterflies. The butterflies are located down a canyon next to the visitor center.

Helpful?
Thank DJ B
North Dakota
Level Contributor
167 reviews
45 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 37 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 days ago NEW

We visited here during Christmas and paid to go in but I can see why people park on the street and hike in. But we did use our park pass for Henry Cowell State park later on that day. This park has a nice little cove beach and some neat rock formation on the north end with an arch on... More 

Helpful?
Thank MyPrairieGirl
Medford, Oregon
Level Contributor
70 reviews
44 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago NEW

no hiking involved - just out of your car and able to see this. We ran/jogged from the boardwalk (about 4miles) along west cliff drive

Helpful?
Thank travelbug2004
Boston, MA
Level Contributor
24 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

Pretty, but incredibly busy and a honestly, looks better in pictures. If you've seen 1 rock arch in the ocean, this really isn't much different. Was underwhelmed.

Helpful?
Thank navi_jen
Level Contributor
33 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

We only saw one bridge, not sure if there are more. Went at low tide thinking we'd see lots of tide pools, but they weren't filled with much beyond mussels and seaweed. We were in and out in 20 minutes, on to other things.

Helpful?
Thank Erin M
Waterloo, Canada
Level Contributor
598 reviews
324 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 537 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

Natural Bridges State Beach is easily reached in Santa Cruz. There is parking on the street that is free, and then also paid parking inside the park. The beach is fairly small but still lots of space for people to run around. The views are really nice. The natural rock formation (bridge) in the water is smaller than I anticipated... More 

Helpful?
Thank Travel_Bug81
Level Contributor
11 reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 week ago

Natural Bridges State Beach is a beautiful setting any time of day, any time of year. Its fun just to be there with the waves and the sand and the sun or the fog and just be. Exquisite.

Helpful?
Thank Ruth Z
Benicia, California
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago via mobile

Natural bridges state beach is wonderful, nice sand, sort of quiet, Street parking works. Took a walk, enjoyed the sceneries

Helpful?
Thank jligioso
Flagstaff, Arizona
Level Contributor
716 reviews
306 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 210 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

Worth stopping in the 20-minute parking lot to see the waves crashing against the rock that forms a tunnel (hence the name, I assume) upon which many seagulls were perched. Even in chilly December, people were on the beach and surfers were nearby.

Helpful?
Thank CleopatraBunny
Level Contributor
34 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 weeks ago

[NOTE: Monarch-viewing at this site is strictly a winter activity. The monarch butterflies arrive around Thanksgiving and start to disperse in February.] This is a mixed review because the colony of overwintering monarchs at Natural Bridges is declining. [There is much better monarch viewing at Lighthouse Field about a mile away.] To be sure, there are some monarchs, best viewed... More 

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1 Thank Frank M

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