Description - There is a long stretch of sand backed by bluffs. There is a covered picnic facility. The park also has an interpretive center. In 1910 a Norwegian civil engineer named Fougner thought of using concrete to build ships. It wasn't until 1917, when wartime steel shortages required the use of cement for construction that Fougner's idea was used.
Copyright: California State Parks
Fun in the sun at Seacliff State Beach
- The Peralta and the Palo Alto were built for wartime use as tankers, however World War One ended before ship construction was finished -- so they were never used.
The Palo Alto remained docked in Oakland until 1929, when the Cal-Nevada Company bought the ship with the idea of making her into an amusement and fishing ship. Her maiden voyage was made under tow to Seacliff State Beach. Once positioned at the beach, the sea cocks were opened and the Palo Alto settled to the ocean bottom. By the summer of 1930 a pier had been built leading to the ship, the ship was remodeled. A dance floor on the main deck was added, also a cafe in the superstructure was built, as was a fifty-four foot heated swimming pool, and a series of carnival type concessions were placed on the afterdeck. The Cal-Nevada Company went broke after two seasons -- then the Palo Alto's was stripped, leaving the ship and the pier used only for fishing -- as they still are today.
Recreation - Seacliff State Beach is known for its fishing pier and concrete freighter, the Palo Alto. The beach is also a popular swimming spot. There is a long stretch of sand backed by bluffs. There is a covered picnic facility. The park also has an interpretive center.
Climate - Climate in the San Francisco-Bay area varies greatly with elevation and the amount of coastal influence. Areas with more coastal influence experience moderate temperatures year round with fog likely from June through mid-August. Plan your coastal visit in the late summer or fall to ensure the best conditions for viewing the scenery. Also, occasional clear days between winter and spring storms are incomparable. Areas further inland experience greater temperature extremes, with relatively cooler winters and hot summers. Inland areas often receive frost on winter nights. As throughout most of California most of the precipitation comes in the winter months, with April through October normally very dry.
Take the Seacliff turnoff from Highway One in the town of Aptosjust south of the town of Santa Cruz.