New Brighton State Beach RV & Campground Guide

California

New Brighton State Beach

Park is a beautiful public area on the northern end of Monterey Bay in California. Only 4 miles from Santa Cruz, this park is situated on 93 acres of wood bluffs in Capitola that lead down to beaches. New Brighton State Beach was adopted as a state park in 1933; it was previously a Chinese fishing village and then a private resort. Today, this popular family park has 114 RV and tent sites and features plenty of activities like hiking, fishing and swimming. While at the park, you'll have many opportunities to see marine mammals, birds and crustaceans, and the nearby Seacliff State Beach Park in Aptos is home to the SS Palo wrecked ship, which hosts a variety of marine life. Depending on the time of year, you may spot dolphins, grey whales and sea otters.

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Weather
Spring 45 - 65 °F
Summer 52 - 68 °F
Fall 51 - 73 °F
Winter 44 - 61 °F
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Nearby Cities
Santa Cruz, CA
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RV Resorts & Campsites in New Brighton State Beach

The best way to see all the varied and unique state parks and campgrounds in the Monterey Bay area of California is by traveling in an RV. When you cruise in an RV, you'll experience your comforts from home while enjoying the freedom of the road. Whether you own an RV or rent one from RVshare, you're sure to get the most from your travels as you visit the following parks and campgrounds.

Santa Cruz/Monterey Bay KOA Holiday

The Santa Cruz/Monterey Bay KOA Holiday is located next to Fort Watsonville, which is 9 miles south of Capitola. It's a large RV park that's within walking distance of the beach. This campground has all the typical KOA amenities and then some, and the managers host many events for everyone in the family to enjoy. This is not a quiet camp, but your kids will love it. There are multiple playgrounds, a camp store and a kitchen that's on-site for your use.

Santa Cruz/Monterey Bay KOA Holiday

• Number of sites: Call for information

• Rates: Call for rates

• Type of hookup: Full hookups

• Electrical Amps: 50

• Pool: Yes, and a hot tub

• Wi-Fi: Yes

• Pet-friendly: Yes

• Showers: Yes

• Other amenities: Dog park, propane, firewood, bike rentals, large playground, outdoor cinema, outside games, game room, outdoor jumping pillow

Santa Cruz Harbor RV Park

Santa Cruz Harbor RV Park is located in downtown Santa Cruz near all the action in the city. It's within walking distance of Seabright State Beach and Twin Lakes State Beach. The Santa Cruz Boardwalk is only 2 miles away. This is a small, quiet park that offers ocean views, including the harbor with all the boats and views of Walton Lighthouse. There's also a walking trail that traverses the harbor.

Santa Cruz Harbor RV Park

• Number of sites: 12 RV sites

• Rates: $52 daily

• Type of hookup: Full hookups

• Electrical Amps: 30/50

• Water: Yes

• Sewer: Yes

• Pet-friendly: Yes

• Showers: No

• Other amenities: A free water taxi between the north harbor and the beach is available between 11 a.m. and 6 p.m.

Santa Vida RV Park

The Santa Vida RV Park is located just minutes from the Santa Cruz Boardwalk. It's a 23-acre park that's set inside a forest of redwoods, madrone and oak trees. There are multiple walking trails throughout the park.

Santa Vida RV Park

• Number of sites: 45

• Rates: Call for rates

• Type of hookup: 40 Full hookups

• Electrical Amps: 30

• Pet-friendly: Yes

• Showers: Yes

• Other amenities: Playfield, a creek that runs through the park

Santa Cruz Redwoods RV Resort

This pristine RV resort is ideally situated in the redwoods of the Santa Cruz Mountains on the San Lorenzo River. Henry Cowell State Park is next door, and there are plenty of trails and waterfalls all around the resort. Activities like horseback riding and mountain biking are available nearby. An additional perk is the spacious clubhouse with seating for 75. It's completely equipped for events and gatherings and has a pool table, flat-screen TV, piano, Wi-Fi and kitchen.

Santa Cruz Redwoods RV Resort

• Number of sites: Call for information

• Rates: Call for rates

• Type of hookup: Full hookups

• Electrical Amps: 30/50

• Wi-Fi: Yes

• Pet-friendly: Yes

• Showers: Yes

• Other amenities: River swimming, fishing, three-level wooden treehouse/fort for children ages 3 - 11

RV Rentals Near New Brighton State Beach

Nearby RV Rentals

Restaurants

What to Do at
New Brighton State Beach

Inside New Brighton State Beach

New Brighton State Park is conveniently located near the beaches of Monterey Bay and the Santa Cruz Mountains. Inside the park, the Pacific Migrations Visitor Center offers a historical interpretation of the human and natural history of the area. It also features a park store. Visitors can participate in swimming, hiking, boogie boarding, paddle boarding and winter surfing. There is a large picnic area available for reservation, and the park features Campfire and Junior Ranger programs during the summer months.

Outside New Brighton State Beach

When you want a break from all the fun recreational activities inside the park, you can check out the dining, shopping and many sites of interest located close by. Capitola has its share of amenities, but you'll find even more in Santa Cruz. The closest big city is San Jose, which is 35 miles to the north. 

Restaurants

Lillian's Italian Kitchen

Authentic Italian food with a Sicilian flair. Their specialties are gnocchi, meatballs, pesto and signature soups. They also offer steaks and other cuisines. They are open for dinner only.

Type: Italian

Location: 1148 Soquel Ave, Santa Cruz, CA

Hula's Island Grill and Tiki Room

This is a fun and casual eatery. Fresh seafood and juicy steaks are their specialties, and every dish is presented with an island flair. They are open for lunch and dinner.

Type: Seafood

Location: 221 Cathcart St, Santa Cruz, CA

The Picnic Basket

This is a cozy café that features delicious cuisine that is family-friendly. They specialize in local sources and feature a seasonal menu. They are known for their ice cream and to-go picnic baskets. Open for lunch and dinner.

Type: Lunch and Dinner

Location: 125 Beach St, Santa Cruz, CA

Poke House Santa Cruz

Build your own poke bowl with items such as salmon, special sauces, pineapple, mango, red ogo seaweed and more. They also have kid-friendly options. Open for lunch and dinner.

Type: Seafood

Location: 1543 Pacific Ave, Santa Cruz, CA

Woodstock's Pizza

Sometimes you just want pizza. Here, you can order customized pizzas in a family-friendly setting with an outdoor patio. Open for lunch and dinner.

Type: Pizza

Location: 710 Front Street, Santa Cruz, CA

Shopping

Pacific Ave Downtown

This flea market is a lot of fun, and you can always find interesting items. The food options are plentiful and yummy.

Location: Downtown Santa Cruz, CA

Home/Work

This vintage item store located in a historic bank building offers vintage furniture and newly crafted items from all over. The store is family-friendly and even has a train table for the youngsters.

Location: 1100 Soquel Ave, Santa Cruz, CA

Botanic and Luxe

Botanic and Luxe features home-crafted goods and unique gifts for all occasions and plenty of plants.

Location: 701-A Front St, Santa Cruz, CA

Sightseeing

Santa Cruz Beach Boardwalk

The Boardwalk has something for everyone. It is like a cross between a small theme park and a shopping strip. There are rides, games, shops and many other fun things to do. 

Location: Santa Cruz, CA

Roaring Camp Railroads

See California’s towering redwood trees from two historic railroads: the Ride Steam Trains to Bear Mountain or the Beach Trains to Santa Cruz. You can also visit an 1880s logging town, and there are children's activities.

Location: Snata Cruz, CA

Santa Cruz Wharf

The Santa Cruz Wharf is an iconic landmark. Of course, there are plenty of boats, but you can also shop and dine while at the wharf.

Location: Snata Cruz, CA

Seacliff State Park

This beach is known for its fishing pier and concrete freighter, the SS Palo Alto. There are seaside bluffs and coastlines to see, and you'll appreciate the covered picnic facilities and visitor center. 

Location: Santa Cruz, CA

Wilder Ranch State Park

Wilder Ranch State Park is the site of a historic dairy ranch. You can visit an 1897 Victorian home, an 1859 Gothic Revival farmhouse, an 1896 water-powered machine shop, a rodeo arena and many other historic buildings. There are more than 35 miles of trails along the coast and the mountain bluffs.

Location: Santa Cruz, CA

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How to Get to
New Brighton State Beach

The beach is located in the city of Capitola and is just south of Santa Cruz.

The beach can be reached by taking the New Brighton/Park Avenue exit off Highway 1.

Entering New Brighton State Beach

The park is open seven days a week from 8 a.m. to sunset.

Per Car : $10

Per bus : $50

10-24 people

Per bus : $100

25+ people

Taking a road trip in an RV is always fun. You get to visit all the places you've been wanting to see, and many times you see interesting places you never knew existed. Of course, you'll be taking many pictures of your fun times on the road, and RVshare would love to see your fondest moments. Send your photos to their memories link at [email protected] so they can share your good times.