Hostelling International-Santa Cruz

A California beach hostel at the historical Carmelita Cottages

321 Main Street, Santa Cruz, CA 95060 USA

(831) 423-8304

Hours: 8-11 AM & 5-10 PM
Contact & Map

Things to Do Around the Santa Cruz Area
Redwood Forests and Kelp Forests, The Winchester Mystery House and The Mystery Spot, Steam Trains and Historic Missions - we have it all!

The Mystery Spot
Is it Aliens? Geomagnetic holes? A local joke? Check it out! Pick a trademark yellow bumper sticker and enjoy a guided tour.


The Winchester Mystery House
Located in San Jose this old house is full of surprises. Stairs to nowhere. Rooms without doors. Ghosts? Enjoy a guided tour.


West Cliff Drive
Enjoy the scenic 3 mile path that hugs the coastline on foot or in your car. A great way to see Santa Cruz, don’t miss the Surfers Museum in the historic lighthouse!


Mission Santa Cruz
The first adobe mission in the area. A huge part of California and Santa Cruz history.


Seymour Center
Explore bay life, take scheduled nature tours, and touch sharks at this community/ university aquarium.

Monterey Bay Exploration Center
Learn about the bay history, environmental concerns, and species rehabilitation. Free!


Monterey Bay Aquarium
Take a day trip to Monterey to see the world famous aquarium. You can stay at the HI-Monterey hostel there, too!


Pogonip/UCSC Campus
Easy-moderate level. Enjoy redwoods and local treasures like the rock garden, koi pond and more! Kiss your first banana slug.


Natural bridges/ Wilder Ranch
Easy-moderate level. Go from Beach to farmland to cliffy coastline. Look out for ground owls, sea birds, etc.


Henry Cowell
Easy-moderate: Harder trails available. Sea ancient redwoods and sand dunes.


Nisene Marks
Moderate-difficult—longer trails and trail camping available. See beautiful redwoods and many plants and animals.


Point Lobos
Beach, trails, forest, seals, small museums—everything.


Big Basin
Moderate-difficult, a day trip you’ll remember forever!


Elkhorn Slough
Early moderate. A beautiful wetland nature preserve. Hundreds of bird species, and otters!


Explore on your own
Rent kayaks, paddleboard, or schedule tours or whale watching trips to experience the beauty of the bay first hand. It is a wonderful place.