Learn all that there is to know about the history of California surfing at the Santa Cruz Surfing Museum. The museum is built to overlook the picturesque Steamer Lane, a globally renowned surfing hotspot.
Surfing has a rich history entrenched in ancient Hawaiian culture. It was first introduced to the world by three Hawaiian princes who surfed the mouth of the San Lorenzo River on plank boards. Santa Cruz Surfing Museum chronicles the evolution of the surfing sport and culture throughout the years, documenting its hipster phase, followed by its “surf rock” and “soul surfing” phases, the more recent neon phase in the 1980s, and finally, the rebirth of the classic long-board surfing that occurred in the 1990s and is still seen today.
The museum itself is located within an old, yet still operational lighthouse, Mark Abbott Memorial Lighthouse, and is quite small. However, what it lacks in quantity, it makes up for in quality. A wander through the Santa Cruz Surfing Museum offers several displays and exhibits to examine. Start by strolling through the picture and video gallery where you will find yourself transported through over 100 years of surfing history. From there, explore the displays of age-old surfboards and an array of interesting and timeless artifacts that date back to the late 1800s. Thanks to the museums excellent location, when you have had your fill of surfing history, take an opportunity to enjoy the vantage point it provides and watch the surfers in Steamer Lane down below.
Stay at our hotel near Santa Cruz Surfing Museum and absorb the history of surfing!