New Brighton State Beach

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New Brighton State Park
New Brighton State Beach2.jpg
Location Santa Cruz County, California
Nearest city Capitola
Coordinates 36°58′42″N 121°56′15″W / 36.97833°N 121.93750°W / 36.97833; -121.93750Coordinates: 36°58′42″N 121°56′15″W / 36.97833°N 121.93750°W / 36.97833; -121.93750
Governing body California Department of Parks and Recreation
Stairs to campgrounds

New Brighton State Beach is a 95 acre park consisting of a beach and camping grounds. The park is located on east of Santa Cruz in Capitola. The park is adjacent to Seacliff State Beach which is known for its fishing pier and sunk concrete freighter, The Palo Alto. New Brighton is considered the calmest beach in Santa Cruz county and is popular with families, stand up paddlers and kayak fishers. Stand up paddleboards and kayaks are available for rent in the State Beach parking lot during the summer[1]


The cove was once called China Beach for the Chinese fishermen who built encampments and docked their boats there in the mid-19th century. The Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882 helped the demise of the village. By 1900, there were few remnants of its existence.

Thomas Fallon owned that land and tried to develop the location under the name "New Brighton". After he died, ownership shifted to his descendents who still leased the area to campground managers. In 1933, the State of California purchased the land.[2]


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