Twin Lakes State Beach
Latest NewsThe Twin Lakes Beachfront Improvement Project is underway. The project includes road improvements, bike lanes, parking, pedestrian paths, bluff stabilization, beach access stairways and ramps, storm drainage, landscaping and site furnishings.
The beach has a mile of sandy shoreline and is popular for swimming and picnicking. It’s located next to the Santa Cruz Harbor and is one of the area’s most popular local beaches.
Adjacent Schwan Lake Park offers easy walking trails through a natural preserve of old oaks and coastal grasslands. It’s a good location for dog-walking, bird watching and scenic views of the lake and bay.
From Highway 1, take Soquel Avenue to 7th Avenue. 7th Avenue dead-ends at Twin Lakes State Beach. Public access to Schwan Lake Park is via the Simpkins Family Swim Center off of 17th Avenue.
By Bus: Take Santa Cruz METRO routes 66, 68 or 69W to get to the beach.
Things to doBeach Area
Enjoy boogie boarding, surfing, stand-up paddle boarding, swimming and other beach activities.Hiking Trails
Explore Schwan Lagoon, which is a good spot for birding.Bonfires
Beach fires are allowed in park-provided fire rings.
Fees and Passes
Parking is free in the off-season. Summer parking permits for the adjacent streets are required by the county. Purchase one from the kiosk across from the beach.
- Outdoor showers
- Fire pits
- Lifeguard on duty (summers only)
- A sand wheelchair is available for use here or at nearby Seabright State Beach — learn more in the Hilltromper Beach Accessibility Guide.
Schwan Lake and Woods Lagoon (now the Santa Cruz Small Craft Harbor) were known historically as Twin Lakes.
- Dogs are permitted on leash.
- Fires must be confined to fire rings provided.
- Alcohol is not allowed on the beach or in day-use areas.
- A fishing license is required.