The Seabright neighborhood captures a lot of the best of Santa Cruz, largely because it’s so centrally located. While it doesn’t have the beautiful stretch of coastline you’ll find on the Westside, or the numerous shops in Capitola, there’s plenty to enjoy about this quaint section of town between Downtown and Live Oak.
Though the neighborhood is small, it has just about everything you need within a short distance. Several bars and restaurants dot the areas on and around Seabright Ave., as well as nearby grocery stores, schools, and health clubs. It’s an easy neighborhood to navigate on foot or by bike and there are plenty of routes to get around town without a car.
There is some traffic congestion on the main streets in the area, but it’s mostly concentrated on Seabright Ave., Soquel Ave., and Murray St. Aside from the main thoroughfares, the neighborhood streets are relatively quiet with little traffic unless you count evening dog walkers.
The Seabright neighborhood has an interesting historical background, having been established as Villa de Branciforte in 1797 as a pueblo under the Spanish government. Though it eventually became part of Santa Cruz, the Villa had a town center where Branciforte Elementary School currently sits and North Branciforte Ave. was used as a horse racing track. You can learn more about the history of the neighborhood by clicking here.