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Walnut Creek Magazine

Visit Pacifica: Surf City By The Bay

Nov 28, 2023 05:26PM ● By Pam Kessler

Situated on the northern end of the San Mateo Coast, this charming seaside city is known for its laid-back surf culture, six-mile stretch of sandy beaches, and 100+ miles of hiking trails. Whether you’re planning a quick day trip or relaxing weekend escape, here are eight things not to miss in this delightful coastal town.


Rosalind Bakery

A true gem, Rosalind Bakery has undoubtedly transformed Pacifica into a must-visit destination. The mastermind is Matthew Kosoy, a former tech worker turned baker. Kosoy's journey began at local farmers markets, but in 2019, he took the leap and opened the doors to Rosalind Bakery. It quickly gained a devoted following for exquisite pastries, pizzas, quiches, and sourdough bread.


Mori Point Trail

For views from Point Reyes to Pedro Point, hit the Mori Point Trail—you might even see a whale from its vista bluff. Whether you’re an avid hiker or simply want to take a leisurely stroll, this 110-acre recreation area caters to everyone. Officially protected as a coastal haven for walkers and wildlife, Peregrine falcons, red-tailed hawks, harbor seals, and sea lions are at home here. 

Inn at Rockaway  

Steps from the Pacific Ocean, newly renovated guest rooms at this boutique property feature nautical accents and coastal-inspired décor. A standout is the inn’s proximity to Rockaway Beach, gift shops, and a weekly farmers market. And if you're craving a taste of local cuisine, some of Pacifica's seaside gems are down the street from the Inn at Rockaway. Plus, they welcome dogs. 




A beloved local eatery, Breakers, is a casual spot in Rockaway Beach for breakfast and lunch. In the morning, the menu is full of temptations like Crab Cake Benedict, Joe’s Special, and Banana Granola Pancakes. At lunch, grab a table outdoors, order fish & chips, and watch the waves crash. 


Pacifica State Beach

When you’re ready to explore the coast, a scenic trail connects Rockaway Beach to Pacifica State Beach—a wide stretch of sand off Highway 1, also known as Linda Mar. Famous for its Taco Bell Cantina and surfer waves, this beach is a vibrant hub of activity where dogs are allowed to romp along the shoreline and share the joy of coastal bliss. 


Traveler Surf Club

This retail outpost has an adventurous spirit—apparel, home goods, cool art—plus a Surf Club in back with board storage lockers, showers, and outdoor community space. Conceived by former pro-longbard surfer Julie Cox and her partner Rel Lavizzo-Mourey, Traveler Surf Club also offers board rentals and lessons. 


High Tide Café & Crepery

Owned by brothers Will and Hani, this thriving eatery made a triumphant return during the pandemic and hasn't looked back. Located off the Pacific Coast Highway, the walls at High Tide feature bright murals by artist Sourdough Sam, who also happens to be the 49ers' official mascot. Oversized sandwiches, salads, and crepes steal the show. Enjoy your meal on the spacious patio in back. 


Pacifica Brewery

This hip and inviting brewpub is a haven for both foodies and furry friends, offering indoor-outdoor dining, and a well-stocked full bar, complete with whiskey flights. The dynamic duo at the helm, Helen and her son Tanner, craft their own brews, including Bavarian-style Hefeweizen, Hazy IPA, and American India Pale Ale. The menu at Pacifica Brewery boasts an eclectic mix of flavorful dishes: popcorn shrimp, rockfish tacos, wedge salads, and wood-fired oven pizzas.



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