Every inch of the Northern California coast is worth exploring, and if you have the time we certainly recommend you spend some of it driving up and down the coast and checking out all the great little towns and dramatic coastlines. If you happen to stop through this corner of the region, you will be quick to notice that there are many fun things to do near Half Moon Bay that will not only keep you entertained but will surely entice you back to explore yet more of the great activities. This quaint California town is full of a variety of pastimes from hiking and fishing, as well as more artsy and foodie fun to have.
6 Things to Do in Half Moon Bay
- Hiking in Half Moon Bay – While not the part of Northern California that is covered with the famed redwoods, there are plenty of places around Half Moon Bay where you can find groves of these gorgeous trees. Check out Big Basin State Park and Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park, both of which have numerous trails to explore.
- Fishing – There are many opportunities to get out on the water in the area, especially if you love fishing. Whether you’re a seasoned sport fisherman, or want to get out and learn some tricks of the trade, one of the area’s expert captains will be happy to take you out on a charter or fishing trip. To get a feel for the local fisherman scene head to Pillar Point Harbor where you can see all the fishing boats and even buy some catch right off the boat.
- Coastside Farmer’s Market – With locations in both Half Moon Bay and the town just north, Pacifica, the Coastside Farmer’s Market is a great place to get a feel for the area’s rich agricultural community, and commitment to eating locally and organically. You can also find lots of great local gifts to take home with you!
- Fitzgerald Marine Reserve – If the underwater world is of any interest to you, the tidal pools at the Fitzgerald Marine Reserve will blow you away! Check their website for information on the tide schedules so you know when to visit to get the best view of the thousands of rare species living in this unique and protected habitat.
- Half Moon Bay Brewing – One of the best things to do in Half Moon Bay is simply to eat. For such a small town, it has an impressive culinary scene, and Half Moon Bay Brewing fits right into that mix. Serving delicious American comfort food and, of course, their house brews which range from classic staples to seasonal treats.
- Hit the Beach! – Being right on the coast, one of the most natural things to do in Half Moon Bay is to head to the beach. While the temperatures here are never scorchingly hot, and the water never quite warms up, the beaches are a fantastic place to spend some time outside. You may even catch one of those warm days where laying on the beach in a suit is certainly called for.
- Go Horseback Riding – During the summer months (and much of the rest of the year), the weather in Northern California is perfect for horseback riding! Experience Half Moon Bay’s beautiful scenery galloping on horseback along the endless coastline or riding among grassy meadows on cliffs overlooking the ocean.
- Visit Half Moon Bay Downtown – Just because you’re looking to be near Half Moon Bay doesn’t mean you shouldn’t be in it! Stroll through the historic downtown to find the hidden gems of local antiques and scrumptious Californian food. Shop the latest fashions, grab something to eat at a local hot spot, and stop by all the visitors’ must-see sites.
- Go Kayaking – A Pacific coast bay known for its giant surf, massive whale migrations and plethora of seaside restaurants serving up some of the best fresh seafood, it’s hard to avoid ocean-centered activities like kayaking when you visit. There are many ways to enjoy the water, and kayaking in Half Moon Bay is a favorite among visitors and locals alike.
- Visit Pigeon Point Lighthouse – Whether you’re looking for a nice place for a morning walk, a great beach to hang out on for a day, or to learn something about the area’s history, a visit the Pigeon Point Lighthouse will fulfill your desires.
For more ideas of things to do in Half Moon Bay, download this free vacation guide!