A great place to experience live entertainment and diverse groups of people from all parts of the world. All university towns are lively, but Santa Cruz is exceptional, with 'good' street musicians and art, plus theatre and lecture events all year long. The downtown is becoming "The place to live" for those in the know. Professionals, artists and savvy people who want to be within walking distance of great restaurants, sidewalk cafes', coffeehouses, art galleries, shops, markets, great beaches, the wharf, the boardwalk and entertainment love living in Santa Cruz. It is considered by many to be among the best beach towns to live in on the California Coast. It does have its share of bums and beggers true, but it makes up for it by being among the cleanest, physically attractive and most exciting and interesting places anywhere in the world. Many former residents who have been forced out by the high prices are disgruntled and angry that it has become so "upscale". A place they can no longer afford. And beware, some conservatives may find the region too progressive. Wealthy retirees are also discovering Santa Cruz. They wanting a safe, vibrant place to live where they walk everywhere. And although there is crime here it is still considered safe. And natural beauty abounds with miles of hiking, biking and walking trails in the closeby beaches and mountains.