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There are 10 ways to get from Santa Monica to Santa Cruz by bus, plane, shuttle, subway, tram, train or car

Select an option below to see step-by-step directions and to compare ticket prices and travel times in Rome2rio's travel planner.

Recommended option

Bus to Los Angeles, fly to San Jose, shuttle  •  5 h 26 min

  1. Take the bus from Wilshire Eb & 14Th Ns to Wilshire Eb & Veteran Ns
  2. Fly from Los Angeles (LAX) to San Jose (SJC) LAX - SJC
  3. Take a shuttle bus from SJC Airport to Santa Cruz

$131 - $312

Cheapest option

Bus Megabus  •  10 h 25 min

  1. Take the bus from Los Angeles, CA to San Jose, CA
  2. Take the bus from Diridon Station to Water & Ocean 17

$35 - $52

8 alternative options

Fly Los Angeles to San Francisco, shuttle  •  6 h 20 min

  1. Fly from Los Angeles (LAX) to San Francisco (SFO) LAX - SFO
  2. Take a shuttle bus from SFO Airport to Santa Cruz

$129 - $308

Bus to Los Angeles, fly to Oakland, BART, line 181 bus, bus  •  6 h 52 min

  1. Take the bus from Wilshire Eb & 14Th Ns to Wilshire Eb & Veteran Ns
  2. Fly from Los Angeles (LAX) to Oakland (OAK) LAX - OAK
  3. Take the BART from Coliseum BART Station to Warm Springs/South Fremont BART Station
  4. Take the line 181 bus from Warm Springs Bart to 2Nd & Santa Clara
  5. Take the bus from First & Santa Clara to Santa Cruz Metro Center - Lane 2

$65 - $224

Tram to Burbank, fly to San Jose, shuttle  •  6 h 34 min

  1. Take the tram from Downtown Santa Monica Station to 7th Street / Metro Center Station - Metro Blue & Expo Lines
  2. Fly from Burbank (BUR) to San Jose (SJC) BUR - SJC
  3. Take a shuttle bus from SJC Airport to Santa Cruz

$121 - $371

Bus to Los Angeles, fly to Monterey, bus  •  7 h 14 min

  1. Take the bus from Wilshire Eb & 14Th Ns to Wilshire Eb & Veteran Ns
  2. Fly from Los Angeles (LAX) to Monterey (MRY) LAX - MRY
  3. Take the bus from Monterey Transit Plaza / Gate 3 Pearl to Santa Cruz Metro Center

$99 - $308

Tram, tram to Long Beach, fly to San Jose, shuttle  •  7 h 2 min

  1. Take the tram from Downtown Santa Monica Station to Pico Station
  2. Take the tram from Pico Station to Pacific Coast Hwy Station
  3. Fly from Long Beach (LGB) to San Jose (SJC) LGB - SJC
  4. Take a shuttle bus from SJC Airport to Santa Cruz

$106 - $314

Bus Greyhound USA  •  11 h 21 min

  1. Take the bus from Los Angeles, Ca to Santa Cruz, Ca 6742 / ...

$42 - $102

Train, bus  •  12 h 52 min

  1. Take the train from Los Angeles Union Station to Salinas Amtrak Station Coast Starlight
  2. Take the bus from Salinas, Ca to Santa Cruz, Ca 6742 / ...

$67 - $186

Drive  •  5 h 51 min

  1. Drive from Santa Monica to Santa Cruz 344.7 miles

$30 - $50

Questions & Answers

The cheapest way to get from Santa Monica to Santa Cruz is to bus which costs $30 - $55 and takes 10 h 25 min.

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The quickest way to get from Santa Monica to Santa Cruz is to bus and fly and shuttle which costs $130 - $320 and takes 5 h 26 min.

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No, there is no direct bus from Santa Monica to Santa Cruz. However, there are services departing from Santa Monica Eb & Lincoln Ns and arriving at Water & Ocean via Los Angeles, CA and Diridon Station. The journey, including transfers, takes approximately 10 h 25 min.

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The distance between Santa Monica and Santa Cruz is 287 miles. The road distance is 344.7 miles.

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The best way to get from Santa Monica to Santa Cruz without a car is to bus which takes 10 h 25 min and costs $30 - $55.

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It takes approximately 5 h 26 min to get from Santa Monica to Santa Cruz, including transfers.

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Santa Monica to Santa Cruz bus services, operated by Megabus, depart from Los Angeles, CA station.

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The quickest flight from Los Angeles Airport to San Jose Airport is the direct flight which takes 1 h 5 min.

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Santa Monica to Santa Cruz bus services, operated by Santa Cruz Metro, arrive at Water & Ocean station.

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Yes, the driving distance between Santa Monica to Santa Cruz is 345 miles. It takes approximately 5 h 51 min to drive from Santa Monica to Santa Cruz.

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Map of how to get from Santa Monica to Santa Cruz.
Launch map view
  • Distance: 286.8 miles
  • Duration: 5 h 26 min

What companies run services between Santa Monica, CA, USA and Santa Cruz, CA, USA?

You can take a bus from Santa Monica to Santa Cruz via Alameda Nb & Los Angeles Fs, Los Angeles, CA, San Jose, CA, and Diridon Station in around 10 h 25 min.

Airlines
Southwest Airlines
Website
southwest.com
Flights from Los Angeles to San Jose
Ave. Duration
1 h 12 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$130 - $600
Flights from Los Angeles to San Francisco
Ave. Duration
1 h 22 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$100 - $550
Flights from Los Angeles to Oakland
Ave. Duration
1 h 21 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$85 - $430
Flights from Burbank to San Jose
Ave. Duration
1 h 9 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$100 - $550
Flights from Long Beach to San Jose via Las Vegas
Ave. Duration
3 h 27 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$200 - $330
United Airlines
Website
united.com
Flights from Los Angeles to San Francisco
Ave. Duration
1 h 33 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$70 - $440
Flights from Los Angeles to Monterey
Ave. Duration
1 h 21 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$90 - $500
Flights from Los Angeles to Monterey via San Francisco
Ave. Duration
3 h 30 min
When
Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday
Estimated price
$90 - $500
Alaska Airlines, Inc.
Website
alaskaair.com
Flights from Los Angeles to San Jose
Ave. Duration
1 h 25 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$150 - $900
Flights from Los Angeles to San Francisco
Ave. Duration
1 h 34 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$70 - $470
Flights from Burbank to San Jose
Ave. Duration
1 h 13 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$95 - $850
American Airlines
Website
aa.com
Flights from Los Angeles to San Jose
Ave. Duration
1 h 17 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$95 - $440
Flights from Los Angeles to San Francisco
Ave. Duration
1 h 26 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$70 - $440
Delta
Website
delta.com
Flights from Los Angeles to San Jose
Ave. Duration
1 h 21 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$70 - $440
Flights from Los Angeles to San Francisco
Ave. Duration
1 h 35 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$70 - $440
Spirit Airlines
Website
spirit.com
Flights from Los Angeles to Oakland
Ave. Duration
1 h 21 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$55 - $320
JetBlue Airways
Website
jetblue.com
Flights from Long Beach to San Jose
Ave. Duration
1 h 16 min
When
Every day
Estimated price
$75 - $290
Train operators
BART
Phone
94604-2688
Website
bart.gov
Subway from Coliseum BART Station to Warm Springs/South Fremont BART Station
Ave. Duration
33 min
Frequency
Every 15 minutes
Estimated price
$4 - $5
Website
bart.gov
Metro Los Angeles
Website
metro.net
Tram from Downtown Santa Monica Station to 7th Street / Metro Center Station - Metro Blue & Expo Lines
Ave. Duration
46 min
Frequency
Every 15 minutes
Estimated price
$2
Schedules at
metro.net
Tram from Downtown Santa Monica Station to Pico Station
Ave. Duration
44 min
Frequency
Every 15 minutes
Estimated price
$2
Schedules at
metro.net
Tram from Pico Station to Pacific Coast Hwy Station
Ave. Duration
42 min
Frequency
Every 15 minutes
Estimated price
$0
Schedules at
metro.net
Amtrak

Amtrak is a rail service that connects the US and three Canadian provinces. Covering 21,000 route miles (34,000km) Amtrak operates more than 300 trains daily. These medium and long distance intercity services operate at speeds of up to 240km/h, to more than 500 destinations. Founded in 1971, it is based in Washington, D.C. and offers four classes of travel: First Class, Sleeper, Business and Coach. Ticket fares are divided into five subclasses: Saver, Value, Flexible, Business and Premium. Amtrak trains are known for their wide seats, plug-in power, big windows and storage capabilities.

Rome2rio's guide to Amtrak
Contact Details
Phone
+1 215-856-7924
Website
amtrak.com
Train from Los Angeles Union Station to Salinas Amtrak Station
Ave. Duration
8 h 18 min
Frequency
Once daily
Estimated price
$55 - $160
Website
amtrak.com
Coach Seat
$55 - $90
Flexi Coach Seat
$100 - $150
Business Coach Seat
$110 - $160
Room
$260 - $370
Bus operators
Big Blue Bus
Website
bigbluebus.com
Bus from Wilshire Eb & 14Th Ns to Wilshire Eb & Veteran Ns
Ave. Duration
23 min
Frequency
Every 30 minutes
Estimated price
$1 - $2
Schedules at
bigbluebus.com
Metro Los Angeles
Website
metro.net
Bus from Wilshire / 14th to Wilshire / Veteran
Ave. Duration
10 min
Frequency
Hourly
Estimated price
$1 - $3
Schedules at
metro.net
Santa Cruz Flyer
Website
santacruzflyer.com
Shuttle from SJC Airport to Santa Cruz
Ave. Duration
45 min
Frequency
Every 3 hours
Estimated price
$55
Schedules at
santacruzflyer.com
Book at
santacruzflyer.com
Shuttle from SFO Airport to Santa Cruz
Ave. Duration
1 h 45 min
Frequency
Every 3 hours
Estimated price
$55
Schedules at
santacruzflyer.com
Book at
santacruzflyer.com
Santa Clara VTA
Phone
+1 408-321-2300
Website
vta.org
Bus from Warm Springs Bart to 2Nd & Santa Clara
Ave. Duration
24 min
Frequency
Every 30 minutes
Estimated price
$2 - $5
Website
vta.org
Santa Cruz Metro
Website
scmtd.com
Bus from First & Santa Clara to Santa Cruz Metro Center - Lane 2
Ave. Duration
1 h 5 min
Frequency
Hourly
Estimated price
$3 - $5
Schedules at
scmtd.com
Bus from Diridon Station to Water & Ocean
Ave. Duration
56 min
Frequency
Hourly
Estimated price
$3 - $5
Schedules at
scmtd.com
Monterey-Salinas Transit
Phone
1-888-678-2871
Email
customerservice@mst.org
Website
mst.org
Bus from Monterey Transit Plaza / Gate 3 Pearl to Santa Cruz Metro Center
Ave. Duration
1 h 7 min
Frequency
4 times a week
Estimated price
$3 - $12
Schedules at
mst.org
Greyhound USA

Greyhound is a leading bus company based in Dallas, Texas, serving over 3800 destinations across North America, Mexico and Canada. Greyhound carries around 18 million passengers a year who travel 5.4 billion miles (8.6 billion km) a year on their fleet of around 1700 vehicles. For travel flexibility, you can board or get off a Greyhound bus at official Greyhound stations, partner stations and curbside stops. There are around 230 Greyhound stations across the US where you can both catch your bus and buy tickets, that are also available on the official website and via the mobile app.

Rome2rio's guide to Greyhound USA
Contact Details
Phone
+1 214-849-8100/1-800-231-2222
Email
ifsr@greyhound.com
Website
greyhound.com
Bus from Los Angeles, Ca to Santa Cruz, Ca
Ave. Duration
9 h
Frequency
Twice daily
Estimated price
$40 - $100
Website
greyhound.com
Economy
$40 - $65
Flexible
$75 - $100
Bus from Salinas, Ca to Santa Cruz, Ca
Ave. Duration
1 h 5 min
Frequency
Twice daily
Estimated price
$10 - $23
Website
greyhound.com
Economy
$10 - $15
Flexible
$18 - $23

Want to know more about travelling around United States

Rome2rio's Travel Guide series provide vital information for the global traveller. Filled with useful and timely travel information, the guides answer all the hard questions - such as 'How do I buy a ticket?', 'Should I book online before I travel? ', 'How much should I expect to pay?', 'Do the trains and buses have Wifi?' - to help you get the most out of your next trip.

More Questions & Answers

Alaska Airlines, Inc., American Airlines, Delta and Southwest Airlines offer flights from Los Angeles Airport to San Jose Airport.

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There are 110+ hotels available in Santa Cruz. Prices start at $75 USD per night.

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