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Bars and nightlife in Santa Cruz

Top bars

American Restaurant
“Spectacular views of our bay, great food, sometimes live music. Go on a Wednesday and watch the regatta!”
  • 145 locals recommend
Bar
“Both indoor and outdoor seating, higher end pub food. Located in alley with other breweries/wineries ”
  • 65 locals recommend
Bar
“This bar/restaurant is only located about 1.5miles away. A great spot anytime of day. They have a beautiful garden setting in the back. Perfect for breakfast and they have late night live music. Ofteb times they have bands traveling from LA to SF and making a stop in Santa Cruz.”
  • 75 locals recommend
Restaurant
“Good cocktails, good burger (only on the bar menu but they'll give it to you in the dining room if you ask). ”
  • 43 locals recommend
Brewery
“Local brewery in alley with other breweries/wineries close by. No restaurant but you can order from the local gourmet sandwich shop next door.”
  • 46 locals recommend
Restaurant
“Step inside and you are transported to Hawai'i! Start with the sweet potato fries (order a small unless there are at least three of you), then get the fish with wasabi cream sauce--soooo good! This place can get busy, so get there early or expect to wait.”
  • 31 locals recommend
Bar
“Wine, food, ambiance... all within a 20-min walk, 5-min drive, or 10 min bike ride! Got soif?”
  • 36 locals recommend
Brewery
“Brewery and pub with rotating beer selection and very good bar food. Outdoor seating area.”
  • 31 locals recommend

Nightclubs

Music Venue
“The CAtalyst is an all-time favorite. Catch many well-established bands and many up and coming artists debut here. Cheap tickets ($20-$35) and great music!!!!”
  • 48 locals recommend
Jazz Club
“You never know who will be on that stage. Big names and small, they host them all, and all are pretty darn good!”
  • 24 locals recommend
Bar
“Great late-night menu, kitchen closes around 10:30 pm or so. Late night dancing.”
  • 26 locals recommend
Restaurant
“If you're looking for a place to eat while staring at the bay, this is the only spot as far as we're concerned, mainly because everywhere else along the wharf is a total tourist trap. It's pricey but the decor is beautiful, the service is good, the cocktails are good, the food is fresh and tasty and did we mention the view?!”
  • 19 locals recommend
Night Club
“Wednesday nights are the nights to dance the night away. they also have music most nights on the weekends as well”
  • 6 locals recommend
Lounge
“Expensive great food and drinks, best view in Santa Cruz, directly on the beach. You can watch the surfers.”
  • 5 locals recommend
Bar
“Formerly "The Blue Lounge". I'm not a bar person so I can't vouch for it, but it's walkable and I like to know my guests can party responsibly and get home safely!”
  • 2 locals recommend
Rock Club
  • 1 local recommends

Music venues

Music Venue
“The CAtalyst is an all-time favorite. Catch many well-established bands and many up and coming artists debut here. Cheap tickets ($20-$35) and great music!!!!”
  • 48 locals recommend
Concert Hall
“A great Venue- very old and 'Deco'- lots of famous artists/musicians/comedians come through the area and perform at the Rio.”
  • 31 locals recommend
Jazz Club
“You never know who will be on that stage. Big names and small, they host them all, and all are pretty darn good!”
  • 24 locals recommend
Coffee Shop
“This is where some of the local students hang out to study... of course other locals too! Nice decor and ambiance... quiet and peace... and excellent wifi...”
  • 8 locals recommend
Concert Hall
“Season Producers: the Cabrillo Festival of Contemporary Music, the Santa Cruz Symphony, Santa Cruz Follies, Santa Cruz Ballet Theatre, and the Santa Cruz Derby Girls.”
  • 6 locals recommend
Rock Club
  • 1 local recommends