7am to Sunset
Lighthouse Field State Beach
Dogs not allowed on beach.
Driving Directions to Lighthouse Field SBThe beach is on West Cliff Drive in downtown Santa Cruz.
Online reservations are not available for this park.
No online brochures available for this park.
Upcoming Park Events
No events scheduled at this moment.
Nature & Wildlife Viewing
Drinking Water Available
Winter Storm Closures
Due to a forecasted severe winter storm, several state parks in coastal Santa Cruz County will be closed on Tuesday, March 28. Parks will be evaluated for reopening on Wednesday, March 29.
Parks that will be closed include:
o Wilder Ranch State Park
o Natural Bridges State Beach
o Lighthouse Field State Beach
o Schwann Lake trail area and Blacks Beach at Twin Lakes State Beach
o New Brighton State Beach
o The Forest of Nisene Marks State Park
o Uplands day-use area of Manresa State Beach
o Upper area of Sunset State Beach
o Palm State Beach
Please be aware that additional strong weather systems or damage from previous storms may cause additional or extended park closures.
Looking for your next adventure?
California State Parks Backpacking Adventures offers naturalist-led backpacking trips through the Santa Cruz Mountains each summer. Online registration opens March 1 at 9am.
Artists, we have a special backpacking trip option for you: the Big Basin Artabout! Ten artists will be chosen to particpate in the first backpacking trip in Big Basin since the CZU Lightning Complex Fire on June 3-4, 2023. Artists will recieve a $2500 stipend and will create an artistic piece in the medium of their choice inspired by the trip to be displayed in the park! The deadline to apply is April 28, 2023. For more information, visit the Big Basin Artabout website.
Please be advised, Lighthouse Field SB is one of the few California State Parks that does not accept the Annual Day Use Pass.
Also known as Point Santa Cruz, this area forms the northern boundary of Monterey Bay. It is one of the last open headlands in any California urban area. Surfers, tourists, birds - including the rare Black Swift and wintering Monarch butterflies are drawn to this area. Sea lions populate the offshore rocks.
This is one of the places where Monarch butterflies winter along the California coast. Monarchs are unique because they migrate each winter to avoid freezing weather. The Monarchs wintering here, come from west of the Rocky Mountains. Monarchs east of the Rockies go to central Mexico for the winter.
Lighthouse Field State Beach has the distinction of being home to California's first surfing museum. The Santa Cruz Surfing Museum is in the Mark Abbott Memorial Lighthouse at Lighthouse Point on West Cliff Drive. Overlooking internationally renowned surfing hotspot Steamer Lane, this museum has photographs, surfboards, and other interesting items tracing over 100 years of surfing history in Santa Cruz.
Among many noteworthy community events, Lighthouse Field State Beach hosts "Caroling Under the Stars" each Christmas, a Santa Cruz tradition which attracts hundreds of locals and visitors.