Rio Del Mar

 

Rio del Mar (From Spanish: Río del Mar, meaning) is a census-designated place (CDP) in Santa Cruz County, California.  The name "Rio Del Mar" was chosen as a "catchy" name to promote real estate in the area during the 1920s.  There is no body of water by that name in Santa Cruz County. But there is a large creek, Aptos Creek that goes through Rio del Mar and empties into the Monterey Bay at Rio del Mar.  Aptos Creek is the "Rio" in Rio del Mar.  The population was 9,216 at the 2010 census.

Rio del Mar neighbors Seacliff State Beach, which features the remains of the cement ship, the SS Palo Alto. The ship was launched May 29, 1919. It was too late for duty in World War I, and after the war was beached as an entertainment boat, where it remains today, swamped, broken, and off-limits, adjoining a fishing pier.

Rio del Mar is known locally as the Rio Del Mar Flats. The surrounding area is a combination of tourist destination, summer rentals, and up-scale residences. Many of the homes in or near the Flats are of the beachcomber type, two-story townhouses with balconies and carports.