Autumn in Half Moon Bay, California


Enjoy Pumpkin-Inspired Celebrations, Patches, Beer, and Much More!

There is no better place to celebrate the wonders of the fall season than Half Moon Bay. Fondly regarded as the pumpkin capital of the world, this beautiful coastal region 30 miles south of San Francisco produces more than 3,000 tons of pumpkins every year.

Pick-Your-Own Pumpkin Patches

An autumn visit to the pumpkin fields around Half Moon Bay is a popular annual tradition for many. Spread out along Highway 92 (San Mateo Road) and Cabrillo Highway (Rt. 1), visitors will discover pumpkins in a wide variety of colors, shapes, and sizes in a beautiful rural setting. Below is a selection of local pumpkin farms open to visitors. For information about advance tickets and reservations, contact the farm directly. 

Fall Events

  • Summer’s End Music Festival marks the beginning of autumn with live music from the B-Side Players, Katie Skene, Radio Gatsby, and Weekend at Bernie’s, along with fun activities for the kids like face painting and an inflatable obstacle course. Sept 23, 12pm to 7pm, Main Street (free)
  • Mavericks Festival celebrates the opening of the Mavericks big wave season with live music from Unwritten Law, The Beaches, Coast Tribe, Mondo Cozmo, False Bottom Band, and Common Sense. Videos of Mavericks surfers will play on the Jumbotron while vendors serve delicious food and amazing drinks. Sept 30 and Oct 1, 11am to 6pm, Pillar Point Harbor (free, VIP Tickets available)
  • 50th Annual Safeway World Championship Pumpkin Weigh-Off awards the world’s biggest prize of $9 per pound to the 1st place pumpkin, plus a special $30,000 mega-prize for the world record breaking pumpkin at the prestigious Half Moon Bay event. Oct 9, 7am to 2pm, 735 Main St (free)
  • Half Moon Bay Art & Pumpkin Festival is the season’s signature event, drawing visitors to the “World Pumpkin Capital” for an epic festival on historic Main Street. Experience giant pumpkins, live music, food, drinks, arts & crafts vendors, pumpkin carving, costume contest and more. Oct 14 & 15, 9am to 5pm, Main Street (free)
  • Trick or Treat on Main Street invites kids downtown for the afternoon on Halloween, where they can pick up a free trick-or-treat bag in Mac Dutra Park and collect candy from merchants. Bags are distributed between noon and 2pm, and most shops are open until at least 5pm.
    Oct 31, 12pm to 5pm, Downtown Half Moon Bay

Fall Cuisine

The Ritz-Carlton, Half Moon Bay will once again craft special harvest-inspired dishes and cocktails using fresh, seasonal ingredients at its signature restaurants, The Conservatory and Navio. Previously, the menus have featured a savory lobster pumpkin bisque, decadent pumpkin mousse cake, and more seasonal culinary delights. Popular seasonal favorites return, like Pumpkin Harvest Ale from Half Moon Bay Brewing Company (390 Capistrano Rd) and Pumpkin Ravioli at Mezzaluna (459 Prospect Way). Sample Pumpkin Pie Salt Water Taffy along with many other Pumpkin treats at Small Town Sweets (617 Main Street).

Seasonal Shopping

Half Moon Bay’s historic Main Street is a shopper’s dream with blocks of locally owned boutiques and galleries. Pick up a canvas pumpkin tote at Fengari Fiber Arts (415 Main St)to carry your knitting supplies, and stop into Hometown Mercantile (416 Main St) for Posh pumpkins made with hand-dyed velvet and stems from local farms. Jupiter & Main (432 Main St) introduces their new house made Spicy Pumpkin candles, hand-poured in Half Moon Bay. Seascapes Succulent Nursery (795 Main St) creates adorable pumpkins topped with moss and succulent cuttings that last for months and months. You’ll find seasonal surprises in most downtown shops, along with cheerful autumn décor.