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Aptos Real Estate

Aptos was traditionally inhabited by the Ohlone Awaswas people and the name Aptos, meaning “the people”, is one of only three native words that have survived as place-names in Santa Cruz County. Aptos is an unincorporated town of approximately 23,500 residents with approximately 21,000 in the urban area which includes Seascape, Rio Del Mar, Seacliff and the Cabrillo area, with an additional 2,500 located in the rural area known as Aptos Hills. There are approximately 11,600 households in this area. Aptos has a thriving tourism industry accounting for 25% of the county’s visitor rental units. A substantial number of tourists stay in vacation rentals, with an average of 6 people per house, for 6 nights.

Aptos includes coastal Rio del Mar and Seascape areas. It is home to the historic Aptos Village, a local community college, Cabrillo, and the entrance to the Forest of Nisene Marks State Park. A redesign and update to Aptos Village is currently under construction. This will create a pedestrian-friendly central hub to shop and dine and will have mixed use housing, Single Family Residential and Condos. 

Aptos has an abundance of scenic, natural environments:

  • Nisene Marks Park features over 30 miles of scenic forested trails for hiking and jogging as well as picnic tables and camping sites. Most visitors come to picnic near Aptos Creek or to hike, jog, or bike on 30 miles of trails in rugged semi-wilderness, rising from sea level to steep coastal mountains of more than 2,600 feet.  
  • Seacliff state beach stretches for almost a mile along the northern end of Monterey Bay. A paved promenade extends the length of the beach. Additionally, swimming, boogie boarding, picnicking, and fishing are just a few of the other popular activities on this beach. 
  • A local favorite, Aptos Park is the site of the annual Aptos Blues Festival.

In 2016, the estimated median household income in Aptos was $90,178 and 62.7% of residents over 25 had a bachelor’s degree or higher. 


Rio del Mar/Seascape

Rio del Mar is Spanish,  meaning River of the Sea. It  is in unincorporated areas of Santa Cruz county. The 2010 United States Census reported that Rio del Mar had a population of 9,216 and contained approximately 4,000 households. Though a part of Aptos, locals consider Rio del Mar to be a separate community and Rio del Mar State Beach is the main attraction. It starts in the waterfront area at the end of Rio del Mar Boulevard and continues south for almost a mile on Beach Drive to the end. This wide stretch of sand is a favorite for those who enjoy swimming, surfing, boogie boarding, volleyball, paddle boarding and fishing. Additionally, wildlife such as whales, dolphins, sea lions, and a variety of birds can be seen from this beach. There is a large creek, Aptos Creek, that goes through Rio del Mar and empties into the Monterey Bay at Rio del Mar. 

On land, Rio del Mar features a variety of boutique wineries, shops, and art galleries, as well as a private tennis club. Due to its close proximity to the coast, the real estate in this area tends to be higher priced than other areas of the county. Seascape Resort features beautiful views of the Bay, full-service villas and suites, award winning Sanderlings restaurant, and access to Seascape Beach. The Seascape Golf Club is one of Northern California’s top, 6,034-yard, 18-hole golf courses. 

In 2016, the estimated median household income in Rio del Mar was $108,382 and 53.5% of residents over 25 had a bachelor’s degree or higher.


Aptos and Rio Del Mar Schools

Homes in Aptos and Rio Del Mar will fall under the Pajaro Valley Unified School District, the largest public school district in Northern California which includes schools from kindergarten through 12th grade. This district is made up of the following schools. You can use this resource to find out which schools your student will be assigned to at each educational level.