Manresa State Beach

Sundown sets of nature's fireworks at Manresa State Beach. Photo by Dg251273, CC BY-SA 4.0.

Miles of empty beach in either direction.

West Cliff Drive

The Surf Museum at Lighthouse Point.

A 2.5-mile bike and pedestrian path skirting the cliffs.

The Deep Turquoise Sea

The view from West Cliff Drive. Photo by Traci Hukill.

Support local art! Marine organisms paint a new blue for Santa Cruz seas

Accessible Beach Guide

That's how you roll in a beach wheelchair, available at a number of Santa Cruz area beaches. Photo courtesy Shared Adventures.

'Cause everyone likes to play in the sand.

2014 Coastal Cleanup Day Results

Girl Scouts San Jose pitched in to help clean up Seabright Beach at this year's Coastal Cleanup Day. Photo courtesy Save Our Shores.

Three of the five dirtiest cleanup sites were in San Lorenzo Valley. Not cool.

The State of Santa Cruz Beaches 2014

New Brighton State Beach, one of the county's cleanest. Hilltromper photo.

The Natural Resources Defense Council's annual water quality report on America's beaches shows some surprises from Santa Cruz County beaches.

The Cleanest Beaches in Santa Cruz County 2014

Seacliff State Beach had an almost perfect water quality record last year, according to the NRDC's 2014 Testing the Waters report. Eugene Zelenko photo.

Every year the Natural Resources Defense Council issues its Testing the Waters report. These beaches scored the highest in Santa Cruz County for water quality.

Rings of Fire

S'mores are good. S'mores on the beach are great. Photo by Petyo Ivanov.

Fancy a fire on the beach? Where to roast your weenies near crashing waves.

Warriors Clean Up at Seabright

After the heavy lifting comes the care and feeding of fans. A Warriors player signs autographs at the March 15 Seabright beach cleanup. Photo by Alexa Lomberg.

The Santa Cruz Warriors traded in their jerseys for bright yellow “I [heart] Clean Beaches” shirts Saturday.

2013 Coastal Cleanup Day Results

The Panther Beach cleanup crew with Patrick Adams. Photo courtesy Save Our Shores.

Three thousand volunteers and 17,000 pounds of trash later, Monterey Bay beaches are looking better.