With views of the Pacific Ocean that can take your breath away and sunsets that can paint the sky colors you would have never imagined, Half Moon Bay is a wonderful place to live. Although the small town is packed with places for dining and entertainment, its close proximity to San Francisco, San Jose, and Monterey provide it with even more exciting places to visit. Founded in the 1800s as an isolated agricultural and fishing community, the town was originally known as San Benito, then as Spanishtown, and the name Half Moon Bay was chosen in 1874. The community grew as the Ocean Shore Railroad was built, and even more as roads to San Fransisco and San Jose were completed, into the bustling town it is today.
Downtown Half Moon Bay
The center of Half Moon Bay’s activity lies downtown, on the town’s historic Main Street. Here, you can wander down rows of beautiful and cozy buildings to find outdoor cafes and restaurants, unique shops, art galleries, several historic buildings dating back to the 1800′s, and even a local theater company! Every third weekend in October, Main Street gets covered in autumn-themed decorations for Half Moon bay’s famous annual Pumpkin Festival. At this festival, everything is pumpkin-themed, from food to gifts to art to a parade, and even features a massive pumpkin weigh-off! No matter what time of year, Main Street is certainly the place to be!
Half Moon Bay features several stunning beaches, which are great for picnics, evening strolls, and even spaces for barbeques and camping at several locations. There’s also a beautiful trail along the coast that’s great for walking and biking, as well as horseback tours offered by a local ranch. Further south of town, there are a number of secluded beaches, small farms, and inland trails through diverse ecosystems, including the Purisima Creek Redwoods Trail, a long and beautiful hike that follows a secluded creek up through a densely forested mountain. Whether you prefer to bask in the open sun on a beach and feel the ocean breeze or explore mountains covered in ferns and towering redwoods, Half Moon Bay has you covered.