XV8H+H2 Santa Cruz, CA, USA
Located a few miles west of Santa Cruz, Four Mile Beach is named for its distance from the city of Santa Cruz. The beach is one of the most popular beaches in The Wilder Ranch State Park area. Although it is traditionally frequented by professional surfers, it is also a favorite weekend spot for non-surfing beachgoers. The beach is situated between bluffs present on the southern end of the state park and has beige-colored sand. The area around the beach is full of grassy vegetation and has a couple of ponds, along with Baldwin Creek which meets the ocean at the beach location. While the beach does not have any lifeguards, showers, or concession stands and does not allow dogs, it does have restrooms. You can access the beach easily via a short walk through the park trail from the Four Mile Beach parking lot. You can find free parking on California State Highway 1 a bit north of the State Park entrance.
Four Mile Beach offers a large variety of activities including tide-pooling, biking, hiking, boating, canoeing, swimming, wildlife watching, surfing, kitesurfing, beach walking, and snorkeling. The beach is a hot spot for surfers as the waters here can form some pretty big and consistent waves that are partially due to north-western winds that blow offshore on the beach. If you’re looking for other nearby beach options that offer a quieter beach experience because they are more secluded, you can access the neighboring Strawberry Beach by hiking south on the state park coastline hiking trail. You can also travel further south and visit Fern Grotto Beach which is full of caverns, caves, and other interesting rock formations, along with being a regular haunt of seals. You can visit Wilder Beach, which is a wildlife preserve and the nesting ground of the endangered snowy plover birds. The northern part of Wilder Ranch State Park is situated near the state park visitor center and features a renovated 19th-century ranch that represents a crucial era in California’s early history. This portion of the state park also has hiking, biking, and horse riding trails which offer a unique insight into the interesting geography of the Californian Wildlands.
If you're looking for a restaurant, Mission St Bbq serves great pulled pork and briskets paired with flavorful barbecue sauces and has live jazz music on Fridays and Saturdays. Cafe Brasil, located nearby, offers a great family-friendly budget dining experience along with a vibrant menu featuring authentic Brazilian dishes and a juice bar. You can also check out Emily’s Good Things To Eat, a bakery famous for its delicious range of pastries and sandwiches and great coffee.
If you are looking for a hotel near Four Mile Beach, the Spanish-mission style 4-Star Chaminade Resort & Spa is located 16 minutes away and offers a variety of amenities including a spa and fitness center, luxurious rooms, and beautifully landscaped hotel grounds. For a more affordable option, the 3-Star Pacific Blue Inn is a 3-Star accommodation that offers spacious rooms along with amenities that include outdoor fire pits and complimentary breakfast. For a budget-friendly experience, the Bay Front Inn offers great rooms at reasonable rates.
Stairs To BeachNo
Kayaking / CanoeingNO
Lounge Chair RentalNo
Beach Mat RentalNo
Size of the beach
Public or Private
Mist - Mist