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Head to Half Moon Bay–a delightful tourist town

Half Moon Bay Coastline
Half Moon Bay Coastline

I love visiting little towns with locally owned stores, a good restaurant or two and some street art when I go on vacation. We hit the bullseye with Half Moon Bay. It had all that and was close to the ocean. Charming.

When we were there in April it wasn’t overfilled with tourists and I saw no sign of fudge shops (something you see in Michigan resort towns), but I’m sure there were some quirky things we didn’t notice that irritate the locals.

Located about 30 miles south of San Francisco, its a great little get-a-way populated with full time locals, people with weekend homes and visitors like us. Nice mix. Fun. It’s between the Pacific Coast and forested hills. I haven’t been up and down California in years, but I can’t imagine that the coast line can get much better.

Half Moon Bay Coast line
Half Moon Bay Coast line
Wind swept Tree on Half Moon Bay Coast line
Wind swept Tree on Half Moon Bay Coast line
Wind swept Tree on Half Moon Bay Coast line
Wind swept Tree on Half Moon Bay Coast line
Half Moon Bay Coast line
Half Moon Bay Coast line

According to Wikipedia, Spanishtown, or Half Moon Bay as it is now called, is perhaps the oldest settlement in San Mateo County, dating back to the 1840s. For thousands of years, the land was inhabited by Costanoan Indians.

It attracted a thriving fishing industry and then during the Prohibition “rum runners” took advantage of dense fog and hidden coves in the area to serve a number of roadhouses and inns, some of which operate today as restaurants.

Real growth in the area came after World War II with the construction of numerous subdivisions, eventually leading to the incorporation of Half Moon Bay in 1959. The city preserves a charming downtown district which includes historic buildings dating as far back as 1869.

Probably the most interesting recent controversy was over building of a massive Ritz-Carlton right on the coast.   Originally an unassuming town of folks whose ancestors were fishermen, ship builders, and farmers, the influx of the wealthy folks from Silicone Valley changed things. Hopefully the pace of change will be slow and the life along the coast preserved.
Here are some images from my four days in the Half Moon Bay area.  For more go to last week’s blog post about the area.

Bike Rack in Half Moon Bay
Bike Rack in Half Moon Bay
Bike Rack in Half Moon Bay
Bike Rack in Half Moon Bay
Cute houses in Half Moon Bay
Cute houses in Half Moon Bay
Not sure what is going on here? Communicating with space?
Not sure what is going on here? Communicating with outer space?
Fun and Funny Signs in Half Moon Bay
Fun and Funny Signs in Half Moon Bay
Fun and Funny Signs
Fun and Funny Signs in Half Moon Bay
Charming Church Half Moon Bay
Charming Church Half Moon Bay
Charming Church Window Half Moon Bay
Charming Church Window Half Moon Bay
Cute Store in Half Moon Bay
Cute Store in Half Moon Bay
Main street activity area
Main street activity area
Main street activity area
Main street activity area
Historic Building Half Moon Bay
Historic Building Half Moon Bay

 

 

Post Author
Susan J. Smith
Susan's career includes writing for newspapers, lots of community work and a wonderful family life. Now she is enjoying traveling, photography and writing for DesignDestinations and Grand Rapids Magazine. She welcomes you on her journey and appreciates your comments.

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