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Año Nuevo State Park

Breathtaking Views of the Pacific Coast

Along Highway 1 north of Santa Cruz, you can see some of California’s iconic coastline protected in Año Nuevo State Park. Since it was established in 1985, the Park has grown to more than 4,000 acres stretching from the redwood forests down to Año Nuevo Island just off the coast sheltering many species on and off shore. Sempervirens Fund is working to extend the connection between Año Nuevo and Big Basin Redwoods State Park.

Whitehouse Ridge Trail to Upper Vista Point

NOTE: This trail is currently closed due to damage from the CZU Fire. Here is an alternative hike in Año Nuevo State Park.

Although Año Nuevo State Park is well-known for viewing one of the world’s largest populations of northern elephant seals, the view from it’s Upper Vista Point includes breathtaking scenery from the coastal plains to a historic lighthouse and the Pacific Ocean beyond. The Whitehouse Ridge Trail to Upper Vista Point is a vigorous 1.2-mile uphill hike, almost 2.5-miles roundtrip. To begin your hike, find the signpost for the Whitehouse Ridge Trail 2.4 miles east of Highway 1 along Whitehouse Road within Año Nuevo State Park. The steep trail leads directly into dense fern-covered redwood forests. At 1.2 miles you will reach the Upper Vista Point. You may be tempted to turn off at the lower elevation vista point about .5 mile from the trailhead but if you can make it to the upper lookout, it’s well worth the effort. Once there, look westward for beautiful views of the coastal plain at Año Nuevo, the Pacific Ocean and Pigeon Point Lighthouse. Look northwest and you’ll see the upper Whitehouse Creek watershed where Sempervirens Fund is currently working to protect redwood forests and extend the connection between Año Nuevo and Big Basin Redwoods State Parks.

Año Nuevo State Park Whitehouse Creek Overlook

Plan Your Hike

Address: Año Nuevo State Park, Highway 1 at New Years Creek Road 20 Miles North of Santa Cruz, Pescadero, CA 94060

Hours: The park is open for day use from 8:30 am to sunset daily.

Directions: click here for Google maps directions

Park Activities

  • Hiking
  • Nature & Wildlife Viewing
  • Guided Tours

Park Amenities

  • Picnic Areas
  • Marine Education Center
  • Natural History Exhibit
  • Bookstore
  • Theater


Throughout the year, Sempervirens Fund holds a variety of volunteer events, including invasive species removal, trail clean ups, and more! Check out our Volunteer Page for more information.

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