Half Moon Bay is a small coastal town in Northern California. Located in San Mateo County, which covers about half of the San Francisco Bay Peninsula, it is home to just under 12,000 people. This quaint California town offers the best of the north coast views and culture without the bustle of the city. You’ll find world class surf, fishing, and food in a quiet atmosphere. Half Moon Bay is a great getaway from California city life, as well as a wonderful destination for those traveling from out-of-state.
Half Moon Bay is 45 minutes from San Francisco, San Jose and Palo Alto making it a very accessible from two international airports for vacationers, and an easy day trip for the residents of Bay Area metros. It also just over the hill from San Mateo, from which you can get on the San Mateo Bridge and be in the East Bay in about 30 minutes. It is a prime location for anyone Bay Area bound, and easy stopover if you’re not planning on staying.
You’ll find those famed rocky California shores in Half Moon Bay, which you can see from any number of the great hiking trails, none of which are far from downtown. The Purisima Creek Redwoods trails are popular and offer unique canyon hikes. Pillar Point Bluff trails will take you soaring above the wide open Pacific Ocean, and give you both northern and southern views of the gorgeous coastline. The San Pedro Valley Park is a breathtaking hike that will get you up in the mountains that run down the middle of the Peninsula, featuring views of the San Francisco Bay on one side and the Pacific Ocean on the other.
Half Moon Bay is also home to one of the most famous waves in the world, known as Mavericks. This surf spot, named after a famous surfer’s dog, is the destination for the annual world class, invitation only surf competition, which is also called Mavericks. Surfers and spectators alike travel from all over the globe to participate in this event, which is always a somewhat impromptu competition because it depends completely on the weather. If you’re not quite at the pro-wave level there are plenty of other great beginner and intermediate surf spots around including Santa Cruz, which is just another hour down the coast.
This great little town is also home to some wonderful dining options. Chez Shea is fabulous french restaurant that will put you in the small town mindset with its petite, welcoming dining room. The Half Moon Bay Brewing Company is another favorite amongst both locals and visitors for its great craft beers and reputable menu. Cameron’s British Pub is another local favorite hangout with hearty food and drinks.
The charming Half Moon Bay offers everything California is known for in one small, walkable package. You can reside small town style and drive up to San Francisco for the day, returning to the quiet of our little bay at the end of the day. If you’re looking for a great vacation come and stay with us right downtown at the Mill Rose Inn. We’d love to have you!