Davenport, California Photos and Information Beach Vacation Guide.

Davenport is a small town located 15 minutes north of the city of Santa Cruz in Santa Cruz County (check out our article, Davenport – Worth a Stop on California’s Slowcoast). Davenport enjoys spectacular ocean views, open expanses of land and beautiful redwood forests such as Waddell State Beach and Park. Very popular with kite surfers, the offshore waters are often filled with sports enthusiasts. Reds, oranges and yellows from the sails of extreme athletes who enjoy a thrill of bouncing up and down on the Pacific Ocean waves can be seen for miles along the coastline here. Several spots along the road provide drive out areas where cars can stop to watch the action.

The same waves where locals once watched schools of whales glide easily by provided the dreams that caused Davenport to spring forth at a city (see Davenport History below). Even today, migrating whales are seen passing by and provide delight to those who enjoy watching them and their flumes in the distance.


Though the cement plant north of Davenport does not blend esthetically with the surrounding landscape, Davenport retains a charm that befits artisans and craftsmen typically drawn to locations that inspire. Two world class glass studios are located in Davenport, featuring the works of a variety of artists. We recommend you call ahead to obtain hours of operation or even a viewing of their products. 


You can actually stay overnight in Davenport at the only hotel establishment that includes a restaurant and bed and breakfast inn with rooms upstairs above the dining area. Reviews from guests who've stayed there include comments that it was fun and interesting. Recommended as a weekend getaway or overnight experience, BEACHCALIFORNIA.COM staff have not tried the accommodations. Opting for a luxury room not far away in the towering redwoods at the Scotts Valley Hilton, we would not be opposed to a new adventure and hope to report back about it some day.


What is certain is that this stretch of coastline should not be missed. There is something very special about the drive along Highway 1 (called Cabrillo Highway in some regions). There are no Burger Kings, McDonalds and Walmarts to clutter your thinking and vision.  A traveler has only nature and a limited palette of colors to absorb.  Rich blue skies and the deep blue ocean seem richer and deeper here.  Nothing compares with the splash of colors pink, yellow and red at the Santa Cruz Boardwalk to the south or skyscape to the north in San Francisco, but the tan grasses, brown cliffs, green trees and blue skies of Davenport are simple, pleasing and relaxing. City warriors say that after staying a day or two in Davenport, it is time to return to the noise, the excitement of city life. Take the time to pass through and see what it is like.  You may decide not to stop at all but if you do, below are a few points of interest you may enjoy:


Arro's Store and Tourist Bus Stop is a convenient place to stop for food and supplies.

Davenport Roadhouse at the Cash Store, 31 Davenport Avenue, Davenport.
Davenport Roadhouse at the Cash Store offers fine dining, a friendly bar, 8 individual guest rooms and a delightful shop with wares from around the world. The inn is located in a beautiful, unspoiled part of the California coast, halfway between San Francisco and Carmel/Monterey and only 15 minutes from Santa Cruz. T
he original Davenport Cash Store once stood in the same location as as the restaurant. From gingham to gunpowder, the store was a wonderland of products but sadly, was destroyed by fire in the early 1950's. A new building with a pottery studio and New Davenport Cash Store opened in 1978. Today, it operates as a bed and breakfast, store and restaurant all in one.
Restaurant hours:
Tuesday- Sunday: 8AM- 9PM; Contact:(831)426-8801. www.davenportroadhouse.com


Eden Gallery, home of Aumware Glass, 500 Highway 1, Davenport, CA 95017 Call: (831) 429-5307.  Josef Bear created a line of fused glass dinnerware that involves melting two layers of glass together and then in a second firing, slumping the fused blank into a mold. This new fused dinnerware comes in an endless combination of colors. His goal is to create sacred images and mythical symbols in glass that evoke our connection with the world around, above, and within us. Bear launched his Studio gallery in late 1997 with the help Susan Tallarico and half a dozen local artists. Eden Gallery allows the public to see Josef work and buy direct from the artist. The gallery also features over three dozen local artists whose work covers the spectrum of fine art and craft. Eden Gallery is located at 500 Highway One in Davenport at the yellow blinking light. Call for hours. 


Fambrini's Farms -  3 miles south of Davenport on Highway 1. (831) 423-5891. A certified organic farm features a stand that sells a variety of vegetables and herbs, mostly grown on the farm and neighboring farms. Strawberries are John Fambrini's pride and joy. He grows three varieties and he sells them very ripe, to be eaten within two days. Call for hours.


Lundberg Studios - 131 Old Coast Road, Davenport, Ca. Call: (831) 423-2532. Lundberg Studios produces some of the finest art glass of our times. Lundberg Studios is located in the small coastal town of Davenport, California. They began in the backyard hot shop of its late founder, James Lundberg, in 1970. Master craftsmen individually create an exquisite array of vases, scent bottles, paperweights, lighting and custom commissions on a limited production basis. Design styles range from antique to contemporary, from Tiffany to Art Deco. Lundberg Art Glass is made entirely at the studios in Davenport  Melting all its own exotic colors, Lundberg Studios has refined the art of making quality glass by using both traditional and innovative techniques. Call for hours.


La Cabana Taqueria, Highway 1,  Davenport, California 95060 (831) 425-7742.  This taqueria is known as a dog-friendly establishment. It is located in Davenport, approximately 15 minutes north of Santa Cruz. The Davenport Beach is across the highway from the restaurant. To get there from Hwy 17 south, exit Hwy 1 north. Drive about 10-15 minutes until you reach the town of Davenport. The restaurant will be on the right at the corner of Hwy 1 and Ocean Street.

Whale City Bakery, 490 Hwy 1 Davenport, California 95060 Call: (831) 423-9803.  This bakery, bar and grill is open early for breakfast and is also known for its dog-friendly policy. Call for hours.


Davenport History:  Captain John Davenport, a whaler from Tiverton, Rhode Island, migrated to Monterey where he lived in the first brick house in California. When he sailed into the San Francisco bay in 1851 with a shipment of oranges, he passed by a school of whales swimming not far from shore. Believing that they would be easy to capture and process for oil, he dreamed of creating a whaling business. He started the first coastal whaling business in California in Monterey but decided to move it closer to San Francisco. In the late 1860's, Davenport built a pier for his venture and the town of Davenport quickly grew as travelers discovered this scenic coastal stop with its beautiful shoreline and fantastic weather.


The original town was approximately a mile north of the present location in a cove at the mouth of Agua Puerca Creek. Captain Davenport built a 450 foot wharf and a house that stood on a high bluff on the right side of the cove. The wharf became known as Davenport Landing and was considered one of the best landings along the coast. A village sprang up with hotels, a livery stable, blacksmith shop, cooperage and general store. Whaling gear and the blubber melting pots were located near the wharf. The whaling business was not a profitable venture and lasted only a decade. The Davenport Landing wharf was abandoned in 1880. Captain Davenport moved to Santa Cruz where he died at the age of 74.

In 1906 the Santa Cruz Portland Cement Co., started operation and the present town was developed by the Coast Dairies and Land Co. Most of the old landmarks have been destroyed by fire, but the old jail is still standing, built in 1914, situated off the main highway on Center Street. The St. Vincent de Paul Catholic Church is also considered a landmark in Davenport; built in 1915, it is situated at the end of Davenport Avenue. Both buildings were constructed of cement. In 1998, Coast Dairies and Land's 7000-Acre Ranch was purchased for preservation, leaving Davenport located in the middle of miles of open coastal space for all to enjoy.

Historical source: Davenport Inn.


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