Everyone needs a little romance in their life and Half Moon Bay provides plenty of options, regardless of the weather. All it takes is a little planning ahead to make a memorable experience for two. Here are some terrific picks for a sweet weekend getaway.


Check in

For your escape, choose accommodations to fit your style. Just steps away from Pillar Point Harbor, beachy chic Oceano offers fireplaces in every room or the Beach House, which has a Coastal Romance package that includes stay in a junior suite, bottle of Champagne and late checkout. In town, Mill Rose Inn is a charming bed and breakfast right off of Main Street that features gourmet breakfast delivered to your room and a pretty garden. Head to our Stay page to find a complete listing of accommodations to choose from for your next visit.

Mill Rose Inn in Half Moon Bay
 Mill Rose Inn is a charming bed and breakfast right off of Main Street.

La Costanera is one of the few spots to offer true harbor view dining. With floor to ceiling windows you can gaze at the waves while dining on contemporary Peruvian cuisine from chef Carlos Altamirano. In addition to classic dishes like ceviches, empanadas and bocaditos, they offer enticing cocktails with Peruvian pisco. 


Go to town

Head into Half Moon Bay, and take in the colors and scents at the Coastside farmer’s market that is open from 9 until 1pm on Saturdays. Marvel at the big bouquets of locally grown flowers and beautiful produce. After the market, be sure to stop at Alena Jean. It’s a floral and nursery shop but so much more. Meander in their garden and refurbished weathered barn where you will find fun and funky treasures.


Continue your walk into town and settle in to lunch at Pasta Moon. It’s a classic Italian spot with ingredients that are locally sourced. They offer antipasti, creative pizzas and seafood and are most famous for their butternut squash and mascarpone ravioli with brown butter, sage, parmesan and amaretti cookie crumbs.

Pasta Moon Interior
Continue your walk into town and settle in to lunch at Pasta Moon.
Take a class

For a new experience, book a class in a hot glass studio. At HMB Art Glass you’ll learn firsthand how to shape, blow and color glass into a keepsake item. The studio is located at La Nebbia, a small winery with a tasting room. Wine and glass? It’s a perfect combination.


Arrive at Moss Beach Distillery in time to see the sunset. This spot is oozing with stories of ghosts, prohibition lore and was where regular customer Dashiell Hammett allegedly wrote the suspense short story The GirI with the Silver Eyes.


Off to the beach

Early risers can start the day with a horseback ride at Seahorse Ranch at 8 am. It’s a quiet time and a beautiful way to get in touch with nature, or simply enjoy a hike on the California Coastal Trail from Pillar Point Harbor to the Ritz Carlton. Along the way you’ll pass several beaches and the Wavecrest open space, a scenic land preserve with grasslands and wetlands.

Relax at a spa

Reward yourself with a luxurious spa visit at the Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay with treatments such as the Coastal Lavender Indulgence with full body dry  brush, massage and body wrap. Another great option is the spa at Oceano for a massage and the Oceano Sea Bath, an aromatic blend of algae, sea salts and essential oils for deep relaxation. If you’re staying at the Beach House or the Mill Rose Inn, you can also book a massage.

The spa at the Ritz Carlton, Half Moon Bay
The spa at the Ritz Carlton, Half Moon Bay

A signature experience on the coast is the lavish weekend brunch at the Ritz Carlton. On Sunday you’ll partake in a variety of cheese and charcuterie, seasonal salads, chilled soups, sushi, dim sum, caviar, breakfast favorites, a raw oyster bar, meats sliced to order at a carving station and more.

Enjoy live music

At Mullin's Bar and Grill,  you can dine on classic American food and fresh seafood while listening to live music on Friday nights. Check out the calendar on their website to see who will be playing.

Love is in the air (and on the gates) in Half Moon Bay.


Amy Sherman is a local food and travel writer. She’s the author of Williams Sonoma New Flavors for Appetizers and Wine Passport Portugal and has written for food, travel and lifestyle publications including Afar, Food Network, Marin magazine, Fodor's and 7x7. After years of driving past Half Moon Bay on her way to and from UC Santa Cruz, she’s now happy to stop and fully enjoy its charms.