Aikido of Santa Cruz

True Victory is Victory Over Oneself

Aikido of Santa Cruz
306 Mission Street,
Santa Cruz, CA 95060
Phone: (831) 423-8326
fax: (831) 423-6156
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About | Retreat Instructors | Options, Registration & Payment | Lodging, Transportation, Meals & Parking | Contact & Forms


Retreat Community Connections

"The true purpose of the martial way is not just self-protection but the cultivation and happiness
of others and the mending of society. ... It is for this reason we are practicing Aikido."


Making connections and enjoying off-the-mat time with other Aikidoists is one of the great pleasures of attending a multi-day retreat. The Japanese word for retreat, Gasshuku, literally means "lodging together."

Very important note:  Out-of town Retreat participants are responsible for arranging their own lodging during the Retreat.

There is no lodging available at the Civic, so please investigate your other options and do make reservations EARLY! Santa Cruz is a popular summer vacation destination.  Reserve ASAP!  Thank you.

Various lodging options are available to retreat attendees from out-of-town - vacation rentals, hotels & motels, B&B's, and the Santa Cruz Youth Hostel. Convenient to public transport and all-day parking facilities, the Civic will be easy to get to for locals and out of town visitors alike. Below are a range of options for lodging during the retreat.

Please Note: For all lodging options, it is vital to reserve early, as beautiful Santa Cruz fills up in summer with vacationers.

Hotels, motels, B&B's

Summer prices tend to be high (generally over $100 per night) and double on weekends.

Regular Hotels/Motels away from tourist/beach area:
Mission Inn (on Mission Street, 2 miles from the Civic)
Santa Cruz County Lodging -- a website maintained by Santa Cruz County which lets you search for rentals with a variety of criteria.

Regular Hotels/Motels 0.75 miles or less from Civic:
Continental Inn
Islander Motel
Best Western All Suite Inn

Inexpensive B&B (minimum stay is one week - one block from the Civic):
Hind's House

Upscale downtown B&B's:
Adobe on Green (0.3 mi from Civic)
Babbling Brook Inn (0.7 mi from Civic)

Vacation Rentals

The bad news is that being a vacation destination, hotels & motels in Santa Cruz are very expensive in the summertime - especially on the weekends (they almost double in price). The good news is that being a vacation destination, Santa Cruz has a lot of vacation rental homes & condos! Most are significantly less expensive than a hotel (especially when filled to capacity) - and you have a kitchen. Our own search of turned up rentals that can house as many as 16 people to ones that are designed for 2 or 3. We suggest that you book as soon as you can, because vacation rental calendars do fill up quickly! Westside Santa Cruz or Seabright area will be the most convenient to downtown (10 minutes or less), but anywhere in the area will be fairly close. From Santa Cruz heading south (nearest to farthest), the areas likely to have rentals are: Twin Lakes, Pleasure Point, Opal Cliffs, Capitola, New Brighton, Seacliff, Rio del Mar, La Selva Beach. These are all coastal - if you can find something inland (Live Oak, Soquel, or in the San Lorenzo Valley) it may be less expensive.

Here are some more websites which might help you find a rental: -- "Your guide to beach house rentals."
HomeAway -- A large selection of vacation homes, condos, and cabins.



Santa Cruz Youth Hostel

3 night maximum stay (but might extend). Rates start at $31 per night -- some beds may be reserved, some held for chance travelers. A lovely place -- see, for more information. 5 minutes from Civic.

Dojo Slumber Party!

As part of our financial aid program, there are a limited number of scholarships for out of town participants to stay for free at Aikido of Santa Cruz. The dojo is just a few blocks from the Civic (we also have showers and a kitchen). Please indicate on the scholarship application if you are interested in this option. Scholarships are available for Aikidoists attending the full retreat.



Dining options are varied: Within walking distance of the Civic are many excellent cafes & restaurants of all price levels, a Trader Joe's and a health food store. Please see this map of the downtown area for restaurants and other useful locations within easy walking distance of the Civic.



A limited number of parking passes at the Civic Center are available for $30. Please see the registration form for more information.

Several all-day parking lots (max $5/day) are within walking distance. Please see this map for parking suggestions. Please contact us about a Civic parking lot permit if you are a participant with special needs.


The two closest airports to Santa Cruz are San Jose International [SJC] (30 miles) and San Francisco International [SFO] (75 miles). There are two shuttle services that will pick you up at the airport and take you right to your lodging or the retreat. They both pick up passengers at San Jose and San Francisco airports. Rates run about $70.00 from San Jose to $110.00 from San Francisco.

Early Bird Airport Shuttle (831) 462-3933
Private door-to-door service, $80 to/from San Jose Airport and $120 to/from San Francisco Airport.

Santa Cruz Shuttles (831) 421-9883
They offer door-to-door service within the City of Santa Cruz for $50 to/from San Jose Airport and $80 to/from San Francisco Airport. Additional passengers are $10 each.

Santa Cruz Airport Flyer (831) 423-5937
Regularly scheduled shared ride to/from the Santa Cruz Holiday Inn and the airport. $40 per person for San Jose and $55 for San Francisco.


Public Transportation

Using public transportation to/from either airport is a little more complicated and a lot less expensive than the shuttle services. You can use "Get Directions" in Google Maps, and select the bus icon. Once you are in Santa Cruz, the bus station is about a 10 minute walk to the Civic Center and 15 minutes to the Aikido of Santa Cruz dojo.

From San Francisco Airport, the most direct route is to take BART to Caltrain, then Caltrain to the San Jose Diridon Station. From the Diridon station you catch the Highway 17 express to Santa Cruz. Transit time is about 3 hours -- less, if you get a Caltrain Express train (vs. under two hours driving).

From San Jose Airport, take the #10 bus, which is a free shuttle service, to the Santa Clara Caltrain station. Take Caltrain to the San Jose Diridon Station, and then the Highway 17 express to Santa Cruz. Transit time is about 2 hours (vs. one hour driving).


About | Retreat Instructors | Options, Registration & Payment | Lodging, Transportation, Meals & Parking | Contact & Forms

Aikido of Santa Cruz