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Catalina Island

Catalina Overview

Catalina photo courtesy of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce

Santa Catalina Island is located 22 miles from Los Angeles. It is one of eight Channel Islands situated off the coast of Southern California. The island is accessible from the mainland harbors of Marina Del Rey, San Pedro, Long Beach, Newport Beach and Dana Point. It has a rich history of Spanish explorers, Hollywood movies, gold mining, commercial fishing and more. Catalina was once owned by chewing gum magnate and former owner of the Chicago Cubs, William Wrigley Jr. For three decades the island was the spring training camp for the Chicago Cubs. Today, Santa Catalina Island is a playground for boating, scuba diving, snorkeling, kayaking, hiking, nightlife and more. The island is renowned for crystal clear water making it one of the premier scuba diving spots in California. Interesting wildlife common to the island includes buffalo, dolphins, Garibaldi and flying fish.

OTHER HELPFUL SITES:
Catalina Island Website
Catalina Island Conservancy
Catalina Island Visitors Bureau
Catalina Island Company

Catalina Attractions

Avalon is a quaint Mediterranean-like village that overlooks the Avalon Bay like an amphitheatre tucked into the hillside. It features several blocks of hotels, restaurants, bars, shops and spas that fade up a canyon and surrounding hills. Avalon is the heart of Catalina Island where island ferries disembark, cruise ships make port, tours depart, visitor amenities are abundant and activities are endless. The majority of visitors to the island never leave Avalon during their visit. The main modes of transportation are by foot, trolley or golf cart. Outside of Avalon is a rugged landscape of hiking trails, campgrounds and hidden beaches. Two Harbors is the only other place on the island that offers a fraction of what Avalon has to offer.
Website


Catalina Casino photo courtesy of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce

The Catalina Casino is a large circular structure at the north end of Avalon that resembles a Roman Forum and has been a focal point of Avalon Harbor since 1929. The interior is lavishly decorated with art deco murals and Tiffany chandeliers. The Catalina Casino has always been the hub for entertainment on the island and today houses the Catalina Island Museum, Avalon Movie Theatre, Grand Ballroom, arcade and gym. It never housed a gambling casino and was named after the Italian meaning of 'casino' which refers to a gathering place.
Website  |  (800) 626-1496


Wrigley Memorial & Botanic Garden honors William Wrigley Jr., the inventor of Wrigley's Chewing Gum, former owner of the Chicago Cubs and one-time owner of Catalina Island. The Wrigley Memorial is made primarily of materials from the island and offers a view down Avalon Canyon to the bay. The gardens are planted with native California species with an emphasis on island natives. Wrigley Memorial & Botanic Garden is accessible by heading up Avalon Canyon Road either by foot, bike, golf cart or trolley. The Garden to Sky Trail is one of the island's most popular hikes and begins at the gardens.
Website  |  (310) 510-2897


Flying fish migrate to Catalina Island every year from May to September. With unusually large pectoral fins, flying fish can leap out of the water and soar for hundreds of yards. Flying fish are best spotted by boat at night with the lure of spotlights.
Website


Two Harbors photo courtesy of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce

Two Harbors is located at the Isthmus on the north end of the island. Two Harbors is accessible by boat, Catalina Island ferry from the mainland or Safari Bus from Avalon or Airport in the Sky. Dozens of moorings are available to boat owners on either side of the Isthmus. A large sandy beach surrounds a pier that boaters use to disembark. Accommodations at Two Harbors includes housekeeping cabins and campsites. A seasonal restaurant offers a patio deck with oceanviews. A general store provides a deli and camping supplies. Equipment rentals are available at Two Harbors Dive & Recreation Center that includes everything from lounge chairs to scuba diving gear. Popular activities include camping, boating, scuba diving, snorkeling, fishing, kayaking, sunbathing, volleyball, horseshoes, disc golf, bocce ball, tennis and hiking.
Website


The Nature Center at Avalon Canyon is located up Avalon Canyon Road near the Wrigley Memorial & Botanic Garden. It explains the natural history of the island from the geology to the wildlife. View a topographical map and see photos of the landscape and hidden beaches of the island.
Website  |  (310) 510-0954


The Catalina Island Museum highlights the rich history of the island from the Pimugnan Indians and Spanish Empire to its role in the building of L.A. Harbor and the connection with Wrigley Chewing Gum and the Chicago Cubs. Museum exhibits include archaeological artifacts, ceramics & tiles from the Catalina Clay Products company, historic photographs and more. Located on the ground floor of the Catalina Casino.
Website  |  (310) 510-2412


Catalina Country Club is located on Avalon Canyon Road behind the town of Avalon. William Wrigley Jr., the inventor of Wrigley's Chewing Gum, former owner of the Chicago Cubs and one-time owner of Catalina Island, originally built the club for the Chicago Cubs baseball team during spring training. It features Spanish Colonial and California Revival architecture with arches, fountains, colorful tiles and Chicago Cubs sports memorabilia throughout. Poised with a view over Avalon, the Catalina Country Club is a popular venue for weddings and social events. Stop by for a stroll through the grounds or a meal in their restaurant.
Website  |  (310) 510-7428


El Rancho Escondido originally started as an Arabian horse ranch for the Wrigley family and became a world-class ranch. Today, the ranch is a popular attraction in island's interior. Through a connection between the Wrigley family and Rusack Vineyards in Santa Barbara County, the ranch is producing wine with vineyards in the surrounding hillsides.
Website


Catalina Bison photo courtesy of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce

American Bison roam wild on Catalina Island but are not native to the island. They were brought to the island in 1924 by a Hollywood film crew in the making of a silent movie. Sometimes referred to as 'Catalina Buffalo', the numbers of bison grew over the years from a few dozen to hundreds until efforts were made to thin the herd. Today, some lucky visitors are able to spot the remaining bison while hiking or traversing the island.
Website


Beach photo courtesy of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce

Catalina Island surprisingly has very few sandy beaches. Some of the island's beaches even have imported sand for the convenience of its visitors. Catalina Island mostly consists of a rocky, rugged shoreline with small coves. Some small sandy beaches that are good for swimming are located in the more touristed parts of the island like Avalon and Two Harbors.
Website

  • Avalon offers three sandy beaches in the harbor that are good for swimming, snorkeling and beach play. Lifeguards are on duty during the summer months. South Beach is on the south side of the Green Pleasure Pier, Middle Beach is on the north side and Step Beach is halfway between the Green Pleasure Pier and Catalina Casino. Many nearby shops rent beach equipment like kayaks, snorkel gear, bodyboards, lounge chairs, umbrellas and more. The beaches are backed by the town of Avalon with restaurants, restrooms, food and refreshments within easy reach.
    Map
  • Pebbly Beach is located to the south of Avalon and the boat terminal. Pebbly Beach is comprised of rock pebbles rather than sand. Lover's Cove is situated at Pebbly Beach where the water is clear and sea life abundant. No shore scuba diving is allowed but the Undersea Gardens are a favorite with snorkelers and the glass-bottom boats from nearby Avalon.
    Map
  • Descanso Beach is located to the north of the Catalina Casino. Descanso Beach is the location of the Descanso Beach Club, which is a hub for activities, entertainment and nightlife. There is a small usage fee to use Descanso Beach but it comes with many amenities including imported a large sandy beach, luxury loungers with sunbrellas, fire pits, private cabanas, a massage cabana, food & beverage service and kayak rentals. Cabanas and lounge chairs are rented for a fairly steep price.
    Map
  • Two Harbors features a large sandy beach surrounding a pier in the Isthmus. Equipment rentals are available at Two Harbors Dive & Recreation Center that includes everything from lounge chairs to scuba diving gear. Volleyballs can be rented for use on the sand volleyball court at the north end of the beach. Kayaking and snorkeling are popular activities.
    Map
  • Other Hidden Beaches are located all along the rugged shoreline of the island. Most are small coves only accessible by boat and some by hiking trails. There are no services, amenities or life guards at any of these beaches. Some of these include Whites Landing, Goat Harbor, Cherry Cove, Emerald Bay, Parsons Landing, Ben Weston Beach, Shark Harbor and many more.

Eagle's Nest Lodge was originally used as an overnight cabin for stagecoach drivers, Eagle's Nest Lodge became a hunting lodge and eventually became unused. Today, the deteriorating lodge is a popular stop for tours highlighting historic points of interest on Catalina Island.
Website


Things To Do on Catalina

Catalina Island photo courtesy of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce

Hiking is available on hundreds of miles of hiking trails that range from short scenic loops to a ridge-line trail that spans the entire island. Island hiking trails lead to scenic points, hidden beaches & coves and hiking-in campgrounds. The Garden to Sky hike that loops from the Wrigley Memorial & Botanical Garden is 4-miles and rewards with views off both sides of the island. The Trans-Catalina trailheads 37.2 miles from one side of the island to the other. A multitude of other trails branch off of the Trans-Catalina Trail to various destinations. Consider a one-way hike and catch the shuttle back. Free permits are required for hiking any island trails and can be obtained from the Conservancy Explore Store in Avalon, Nature Center, Wrigley Memorial & Botanic Garden, Airport in the Sky, Two Harbors Visitor Center or on line.
Website


Biking varies between pedaling around Avalon on a beach cruiser or electric bike to mountain biking the steep backcountry. The island offers 40 miles of trails and roads for mountain biking. Permits are required for biking any island trails and can be obtained from the Conservancy Explore Store in Avalon, Nature Center, Wrigley Memorial & Botanic Garden, Airport in the Sky, Two Harbors Visitor Center or online for a $35 fee. Catch a shuttle for a small fee and go for a one-way downhill ride from the airport to Avalon.
Website

  • Brown's Bikes rents electric bikes, beach cruisers, mountain bikes, tandem bikes and even wheelchairs and strollers. Rent a bike for any ability from cruising around town to traversing the backcountry trails.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0986
  • Catalina Auto & Bike Rental rents golf carts and bikes for any ability from cruising around town to traversing the backcountry trails. Their second location at Crescent and Metropole rents bikes.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0111
  • Catalina Jet Ski and Electric Bike Rentals rents jet skiis and electric bikes. Electric bike rentals make it easy to explore the town of Avalon with little effort. Located between the Catalina Island ferry pier and Green Pleasure Pier.
    No Website  |  (310) 510-2221
  • Bike Catalina offers bike tours including the one-way downhill airport to Avalon ride, Avalon Canyon Ride and Summit Ridge Ride. Bike, permit and gear are included.
    Website  |  (310) 913-1028

Snorkeling photo courtesy of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce

Snorkeling offers crystal clear water and a multitude of hidden beaches. Easily spot bright orange Garibaldi, leopard sharks, stingrays, halibut and more. Join an all-inclusive tour or rent gear and head out on your own. Lover's Cove Marine Preserve is located to the south of Avalon Harbor and is one of the island's best snorkeling spots, especially for beginners. Boat tours are offered in kayaks, pontoon boats and larger vessels with facilities.

  • Island Water Charters provides snorkeling trips to pristine coves that are perfect for snorkeling. One, two and three hour snorkeling trips are available along with all the necessary gear including wetsuits.
    Website  |  (310) 510-9280
  • Catalina Divers Supply offers snorkeling tours including a snorkel & dolphin excursion and snorkel & lunch. Three and four hour snorkeling tours are available along with all the necessary gear, including wetsuits and waterproof camera housings. The dive boat includes entry & exit ladders, hot showers and facilities. Catalina Divers Supply also rents snorkeling equipment for those looking to venture out on their own.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0330
  • Catalina Scuba Luv offers a 1½-hour snorkeling tour for beginners to Lover's Cove and an all-day snorkeling trip aboard a dive boat. The dive boat includes a galley and facilities. All the necessary gear is provided including wetsuits.
    Website  |  (310) 510-2350
  • Diving Catalina offers a 1½-hour snorkeling tour of Casino Point Dive Park. All the necessary gear is provided including wetsuits. They also offer a power snorkeling tour with the use of a Diver Propulsion Vehicle (DPV). See more in less time.
    Website  |  (310) 510-8558
  • Snorkeling Catalina offers a 1-hour snorkeling tour for beginners to Lover's Cove and 1¼ to 2-hour snorkeling trips to hidden beaches. All the necessary gear is provided.
    Website  |  (310) 472-4503
  • Wet Spot Rentals rents kayaks and snorkel gear including wetsuits. They are located at the Avalon Boat Landing within a short walk of Lover's Cove.
    Website  |  (310) 510-2229
  • Descanso Beach Ocean Sports rents kayaks, stand-up paddleboards (SUP), snorkel gear, bodyboards, swim fins and wetsuits. They are located near the Avalon Casino.
    Website  |  (310) 510-1226
  • Adam's Memory Maker Charters offers fishing charters, sightseeing cruises and snorkeling tours in a 35-foot fishing vessel. Amenities include a full bathroom, dinette, and kitchen. Snorkel hidden beaches on your own schedule. No snorkel gear provided - you must bring your own or rent elsewhere.
    Website  |  (310) 592-5988
  • Joe's Rent-a-Boat rents snorkel gear and many types of boats. Customers often rent boats or kayaks along with snorkel gear and head up the coast to hidden beaches. Located on the Green Pleasure Pier in Avalon.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0455
  • Two Harbors Dive & Recreation Center rents snorkel gear and all kinds of other beach equipment. snorkel gear is rented by the day.
    Website  |  (310) 510-4272

Scuba diving features crystal clear water and a multitude of hidden coves. Easily spot bright orange Garibaldi, leopard sharks, stingrays, halibut and more. Join an all-inclusive tour or rent scuba gear and head out on your own. Lessons and PADI scuba certification is available. Scuba diving tours are offered on larger vessels with a galley, hot showers and facilities.

  • Catalina Divers Supply offers scuba diving tours including 4-hour dive boat tours with lunch and a 2-hour guided scuba diving of Avalon Dive Park. All the necessary scuba gear is provided, including waterproof camera housings. The dive boat includes entry & exit ladders, hot showers and facilities. Catalina Divers Supply also rents scuba gear for those looking to venture out on their own.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0330
  • Catalina Scuba Luv offers guided shore scuba diving and several dive boat options including night scuba diving and extreme shark scuba diving. The dive boat includes a galley and facilities. All the necessary scuba gear is provided. Non-scuba divers interested in site seeing or snorkeling are also welcome if there is space available. Catalina Scuba Luv also offers training and PADI scuba certifications for various scuba diving specialties.
    Website  |  (310) 510-2350
  • Diving Catalina offers a 2½-hour introductory scuba dive tour of the Underwater Dive Park next to the Casino building. No previous scuba diving experience is necessary. Also offered are 2-hour guided scuba diving tours of a shipwreck and night scuba diving. All the necessary scuba gear is provided.
    Website  |  (310) 510-8558
  • Two Harbors Dive & Recreation Center rents dive gear and all kinds of other beach equipment. Dive gear is rented by the day.
    Website  |  (310) 510-4272

Catalina Scuba Luv offers a 2½-hour guided Snuba Diving experience. Snuba diving allows for scuba diving without all of the usual cumbersome equipment. Air is delivered through an attached hose from a dive boat above. Snuba diving is a perfect transition from snorkeling to scuba diving. Dive to depths are up to 20 feet. All the necessary gear is provided including wetsuits. The dive boat includes a galley and facilities.
Website  |  (310) 510-2350


Catalina Scuba Luv offers 25-minute guided Sea Trek tours. Like the crew of the Nautilus in Twenty Thousand Leagues Below the Sea, Sea Trekkers walk along the bottom of the ocean wearing air-supplied helmets. Air is delivered through an attached hose from a boat above. All the necessary gear is provided including wetsuits.
Website  |  (310) 510-2350


Zip line over a thousand feet in distance at speeds nearing 45 mph and 300 feet above the canyon floor. There are 5 zip lines to choose from during your 2-hour zip line tour. If that's not enough excitement, try their Night Zip Lining tour. Located at Descanso Beach Club.
Website  |  (800) 626-1496


Jetski photo courtesy of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce

Boat rentals include everything from motor boats for fishing to jet skis and paddle boats for fun in the sun. Rent a boat and explore hidden beaches at your own pace. Hop on a jet ski and play in the waves.

  • Joe's Rent-a-Boat rents motor boats, kayaks, paddleboards and paddleboats. Combine your boat rental with snorkel gear or fishing tackle for a fun-filled day. Joe's is located on the Green Pleasure Pier.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0455
  • Catalina Jet Ski and Electric Bike Rentals rents jet skis and electric bikes. Jet ski rentals begin at the Green Pleasure Pier where they shuttle visitors to their floating jet ski barge just off shore. Explore the many hidden beaches of the island on your own jet ski.
    No Website  |  (310) 510-2221

Kayaking is a popular activity on the island. Whether kayaking Avalon Bay, heading to a hidden beach or hauling camping gear to a boat-in campsite, kayaks are available throughout the island. Leave the snorkel gear at home and rent a glass-bottom kayak for exploring pristine coves and kelp beds.

  • Wet Spot Rentals rents kayaks and snorkel gear and are located at two spots on the island; the Avalon Boat Landing within a short walk of Lover's Cove and Little Harbor on the west side of the island. They are one of the few businesses offering kayak rental services in Little Harbor. Kayaks include singles, doubles and glass-bottoms that can be rented by the hour or day.
    Website  |  (310) 510-2229
  • Descanso Beach Ocean Sports rents kayaks, stand-up paddleboards (SUP), snorkel gear, bodyboards, swim fins and wetsuits. Kayaks include singles, doubles and glass-bottoms that can be rented by the hour or day. They also offer guided kayak tours to hidden beaches and pristine kelp gardens. Descanso Beach Ocean Sports is located north of the Avalon Casino.
    Website  |  (310) 510-1226
  • Joe's Rent-a-Boat rents single, double and stand-up kayaks. Combine your kayak rental with snorkel gear or fishing tackle for a fun-filled day. Joe's is located on the Green Pleasure Pier.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0455
  • Two Harbors Dive & Recreation Center rents single and double in varieties specialized for sightseeing, fishing, diving, snorkeling and camping. Kayaks are rented by the hour, half-day or day.
    Website  |  (310) 510-4272

Camping is available at several campgrounds on the island. Many campsites are situated within walking distance of the best diving, snorkeling and kayaking in all of California. The trick to Catalina camping is transporting all your gear from the mainland to your campsite. Catalina ferries allow backpacks and necessary gear but any type of fuel is prohibited. The general store in Two Harbors sells fuel, firewood and other camping supplies including tents and sleeping bags. Because campers are unable to return with unused fuel canisters, most leave their leftover fuel supplies for the next camper. Transportation to the campsite from Avalon is achieved on the Safari Bus shuttle that runs during the summer, or you can hike or bike in. Permits are necessary for all campgrounds and no pets are allowed. Several of the developed campgrounds have showers and only Hermit Gulch has flush toilets - the rest have chemical toilets. Two Harbors Campground offers tent cabins, which can lesson the load you need to pack in. Below we've provided information on most island campgrounds.
MORE DETAILS

  • Two Harbors Campground is located approximately 15-miles northwest of Avalon at Isthmus Cove. The camp is situated on a bluff overlooking the ocean and just a short distance from Two Harbors Village. The store in Two Harbors rents and sells camping gear including tents, sleeping bags, stoves, fuel, firewood, charcoal, food and more. Equipment rental is also available including kayak, bike, snorkeling and more. The camp includes 42 individual campsites and 3 group areas. Tent cabins are also available and come with cots for up to 6 people, stove, lantern, sun shade and more. Campground amenities include showers, running water, lockers, picnic table, fire pit & barbecue, sun shade and chemical toilets. Check-in at Two Harbors Visitor Services is required. Reservations and permit are required.
    Map  |   pdf PDF Map  |   Website
  • Parsons Landing Campground is the most remote campground on the island and is located approximately 20-miles northwest of Avalon. Parsons Landing is only accessible by hike or kayak. This is also the most primitive camp on the island offering no running water. Campground offers 8 campsites within stones throw of a hidden beach. Water and firewood are provided by Park Ranger upon arrival as part of your fee. Amenities include picnic table, fire pit & barbecue and chemical toilet. Check-in at Two Harbors Visitor Services is required. Reservations are required.
    Map  |   pdf PDF Map  |   Website
  • Blackjack Campground is located approximately 9-miles northwest of Avalon. This is Catalina's highest campground at 1600-feet above sea level and tucked among pine and eucalyptus trees. Arriving at the camp requires a 1.5-mile hike from the road. Blackjack offers 11 campsites. Amenities include picnic table, fire pit & barbecue, showers, fresh water, lockers and chemical toilets. Check-in at Two Harbors Visitor Services or Island Plaza in Avalon is required. Reservations are required.
    Map  |   pdf PDF Map  |   Website
  • Little Harbor Campground is located approximately 16-miles northwest of Avalon. Little Harbor is the only developed campground on the west side of Catalina Island. Campground offers 23 campsites including 8 group campsites. Amenities include picnic table, fire pit & barbecue, showers, fresh water, lockers and chemical toilets. Kayak, snorkel gear and other rentals are available at Wet Spot Rentals. Check-in at Two Harbors Visitor Services or Island Plaza in Avalon is required. Reservations are required.
    Map  |   pdf PDF Map  |   Website
  • Hermit Gulch Campground is located in Avalon just 1.5-miles up Avalon Canyon Road. Arrival to site requires taxi or hike. Situated in a canyon, Hermit Gulch offers limited oceanviews but is close to Avalon, Wrigley Botanical Gardens and several popular hiking trails. Horseback riding available nearby at the Catalina Stables. Campground offers several campsites and spacious tent cabins. Rangers sell supplies like ice, firewood and fuel. Amenities include picnic tables, fire pit & barbecue, showers, fresh water, flush toilets, and vending machines. Reservations required.
    Map  |   pdf PDF Map  |   Website
  • Boat-In Camping is available at nine campgrounds along the northeast shore of Catalina Island. Kayak rentals are available at several locations including Avalon, Two Harbors and Little Harbor. A Ranger visits the campsites daily to collect fees and enforce regulations. These are all primitive campsites with no amenities whatsoever. Everything must be packed in and packed out, including fecal waste. Reservations are required.
    Map  |   pdf PDF Map  |   Website

Golf photo courtesy of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce

Catalina Island Golf Course features a 9-hole, par-32 course. Play the second set of tees for an 18-hole golf course. Other amenities include a driving net, practice green, pro shop, banquet facilities and golf lessons.
Website  |  (310) 510-0530


Fishing on Catalina includes many species of common bass to exotic tunas. Rent a boat and head out on your own or join a fishing charter for a sure catch. Fishing tackle can be rented from Joe's Rent-a-Boat on the Green Pleasure Pier. Fish species common to the island include albacore, yellowtail, tuna, marlin, rockfish, halibut, calico bass, white sea bass and sheepshead. Fishing requires an ocean fishing license and knowledge of fishing regulations. Two fish that incur huge fines if caught and kept are the Garibaldi and giant sea bass. Garibaldi is the bright orange fish seen all over Catalina waters and is also the California State Fish. The giant sea bass (black sea bass) is usually over a hundred pounds and is very dark with large black spots.
Fishing Regulations  |   Fish Identification

  • Afishinados Charters specializes in fishing Catalina waters with several boat options. Choose from a 24-foot perfect for 2-4 anglers or a 50-foot catamaran for groups up to 49. Their larger boat includes a restroom and galley.
    Website  |  (310) 510-2440
  • Fishin' Funatics specializes in fishing Catalina waters with a 37-foot former Navy patrol vessel complete with bunks, a restroom and seating. All bait, tackle and drinks are provided. Choose from 3-hour to full-day and outer water tours for up to six anglers.
    Website  |  (310) 740-7077
  • Adam's Memory Maker Charters offers fishing charters, sightseeing cruises and snorkeling tours in a 35-foot fishing vessel. Amenities include a full bathroom, dinette, and kitchen. All bait, tackle, ice and drinks are complimentary.
    Website  |  (310) 592-5988
  • Joe's Rent-a-Boat rents boats, snorkel gear and fishing tackle for a fun-filled day. Joe's is located on the Green Pleasure Pier in Avalon.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0455

Hunting mule deer is allowed on Catalina Island and strictly managed under the supervision of hunting guides. Hunters are allowed a 2 deer take, which includes does. Several three-day hunting excursions are offered.
Website  |  (530) 519-4902


Parasail photo courtesy of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce

Parasailing offers views high above the Mediterranean waters of the island. See deep into kelp forests, spot hidden beaches and watch for dolphins, sea lions and other ocean life. Fly tandem or even triple and share the experience with friends and family.

  • Island Water Charters offers parasailing, tubing, snorkeling, sightseeing and island transportation. Spot dolphins, whales and tourists from 600 to 800 feet high. Fly single, tandem or even triple above the emerald waters off Catalina. Ride alongs are welcome for a small fee. Combine your parasailing adventure with tubing from the back of the boat. A photo package is available at the end of each trip. Located on the Green Pleasure Pier in Avalon.
    Website  |  (530) 510-9280
  • Catalina Parasail specializes in parasail tours of the Catalina coastline. Soar up to 800 feet flying single, tandem or even triple. Ask about their Family Rate Discount. Located between the boat terminal and town.
    Website  |  (310) 510-1777

Whale watching offers glimpses of the migrating whales that pass by the island twice a year on their way between the cool waters of Alaska and the warm waters of Baja California. Whales are protected along California's coast and therefore, have been increasing in numbers over the years. Humpback whales are the most common whale spotted off the island. Other whale species that could be spotted include the Gray Whale, Blue Whale, Orcas, Minke Whale, Fin Whale and Sperm Whale. Additional marine life you may encounter include dolphins, porpoises, seals, sea lions, sharks, sunfish, marlin and swordfish.

  • Adam's Memory Maker Charters offers fishing charters, sightseeing cruises and snorkeling tours in a 35-foot fishing vessel. Head out on your own chartered vessel in search of dolphins and whales. Amenities include a full bathroom, dinette, and kitchen. All Ice, water, sodas and binoculars are complimentary.
    Website  |  (310) 592-5988
  • Catalina Ocean Rafting offers 2-hour whale watching trips in ocean inflatables. These vessels are safe, quick and hold fewer people. Spot gray whales, dolphins, orcas, blue whales and more.
    No Website  |  (310) 510-0211

Catalina Golf Gardens is an award-winning, 18-hole miniature golf course. Located in the center of town off Sumner Avenue in Avalon.
Website


Tennis courts are available at the Catalina Visitors Country Club. Located on Avalon Canyon Road behind the town of Avalon. William Wrigley Jr., the inventor of Wrigley's Chewing Gum, former owner of the Chicago Cubs and one-time owner of the island, originally built the club for the Chicago Cubs baseball team during spring training. Two public tennis courts are also available at Two Harbors.
Club Website  |   Two Harbors Website


Volleyball courts are available near the boat terminal in Avalon and at Two Harbors. The court at Two Harbors can be rented by the hour or by the day.
Website  |  (310) 510-4272


Bocce Ball courts are available at Two Harbors. They can be rented by the hour or by the day.
Website  |  (310) 510-4272


Horseshoe pits are available at Two Harbors. They can be rented by the hour or by the day.
Website  |  (310) 510-4272


Disc golf course is available at Two Harbors. It can be rented by the hour or by the day.
Website  |  (310) 510-4272


Basketball courts are available near the boat terminal in Avalon.


Test your skills on a 32 foot climbing wall with 4 beginner, 2 intermediate, 1 advanced and 1 expert route. Located at the Descanso Beach Club north of Avalon. Enjoy views of the open ocean, Descanso Beach and the Catalina Casino from the top.
Website  |  (310) 510-7410


Catalina Island has semi-submersible submarines that navigate through the kelp forests off Avalon. The submarines never fully submerge but the viewing windows are well below the surface where much of the sea life exists.

  • Catalina Adventure Tours heads below the surface in the semi-submersible submarine, SS Nautilus. Spend 45 minutes navigating through kelp forests with orange Garibaldi fish and other local species. Every viewing station includes a torpedo food launcher to maximize your fish sightings. Night excursions are also offered.
    Website  |  (562) 432-8828
  • Santa Catalina Island Company offers trips aboard the Sea Wolf or Emerald semi-submersible submarines. Spend 45 minutes navigating through kelp forests with bright orange Garibaldi, calico bass, sea urchins, bat rays and other sea life.
    Website  |  (310) 510-8687

Catalina Island glass-bottom boat tours allow you to see below the surface without getting wet. Navigate through kelp forests and spot orange Garibaldi fish, stingrays, sea bass and other local species. Start a feeding frenzy with specially designed food drop tubes. Glass-bottom boats head over to Lover's Cove Marine Preserve where the sea life is abundant. Night excursions are available.

  • Catalina Adventure Tours runs 45-minute glass-bottom boat tours in some of the newest vessels on the island. They feature specially design food drop tubes to create feeding frenzies. Located at the Green Pleasure Pier in Avalon.
    Website  |  (562) 432-8828
  • Santa Catalina Island Company runs 40-minute glass-bottom boat tours in the classic vessels that have been doing these tours for years. Located at the Green Pleasure Pier in Avalon.
    Website  |  (800) 626-1496

The best way to sightsee and get around Avalon is by golf cart. Cars are restricted on Catalina Island so most people get around in golf carts. Several vendors rent golf carts by the hour on the island.

  • Catalina Island Golf Carts (Cartopia) rents 4 and 6 passenger golf carts for 2 to 3 hour segments. They have 2 locations in Avalon; one near the Catalina Island ferry landing and the other in town.
    Website  |  (310) 510-2493 and (310) 510-0111
  • Catalina Golf Cart Rentals rents gas-powered golf carts by the hour. Located near the Catalina Island ferry landing dock.
    Website  |  (310) 510-1456

Catalina Segways offers several 1½ to 2-hour Segway tours. Choose from a leisurely scenic tour of Avalon to an Xtreme Off-road Segway tour. They also rent 3-wheel mobility scooters by the day.
Website  |  (310) 510-9665


Catalina Island tours range from walking tours of Avalon and wildlife tours on land to glass-bottom boats and dinner cruises at sea. Spend an hour or day touring the historic sites, rugged interior or bountiful ocean of the island. Tours of the island's interior include spotting wildlife like bison, bald eagles, foxes, deer, wild boars and more.

  • Catalina Casino Tours are offered by the Santa Catalina Island Company. Choose a walking tour that explores the unique architecture and art deco murals or a behind the scenes tour that accesses backstage areas used by the icons of Hollywood.
    Website  |  (800) 626-1496
  • Catalina Tours offers land and sea tours. Land choices include Segway tours, food tours, Jeep tours, bus tours, walking tours and bike tours. Sea choices include parasailing, whale & dolphin tours, snorkeling tours, submarine tours, glass-bottom boat tours and kayak tours.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0211 and (310) 510-0036
  • Catalina Transportation Services offers many island transportation options including open-air Jeep tours. Access the back roads of the island where your driver will take you to viewpoints, interesting sites and points of interest. Available by the hour.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0342
  • Santa Catalina Island Company offers land and sea tours. Land choices include hiking tours, biking tours, zip line tours, Hummer tours, bus tours and behind-the-scenes Avalon Casino tours. Sea choices include dolphin spotting tours, submarine tours and glass-bottom boat tours.
    Website  |  (310) 510-8687
  • Catalina Adventure Tours offers land and sea tours. Land choices include botanical garden tours, walking tours, bus tours and Avalon Casino tours. Sea choices include submarine tours, glass-bottom boat tours, seal rocks tours and dinner cruises.
    Website  |  (562) 432-8828
  • Catalina Island Conservancy offers a Jeep Eco Tours, Land & Sea Tours and more. Ride along with a naturalist on the scenic dirt roads of the island's interior. Spot wildlife like bald eagles, fox, bison, deer and more. Join a sea tour and spot dolphins, sea lions, leopard sharks and flying fish.
    Website  |  (310) 510-2595
  • Catalina Ocean Rafting offers 2-hour whale watching trips in ocean inflatables. These vessels are safe, quick and hold fewer people. Spot gray whales, dolphins, orcas, blue whales and more.
    No Website  |  (310) 510-0211
  • Bike Catalina offers bike tours of the island including the one-way downhill airport to Avalon ride, Avalon Canyon Ride and Summit Ridge Ride. Bike, permit and gear are included.
    Website  |  (310) 913-1028
  • Ghost Tours of Catalina offers 1-hour walking tours of Avalon. Experienced ghost guides retell the stories of tragic occurrences and paranormal activities on Catalina Island.
    Website  |  (310) 502-6131

Catalina Island day spas include boutique day spas and luxury hotels with spas. Relax, rejuvenate and unwind with massages, body treatments, aromatherapy, facials and more. There's even a private cabana on Descanso Beach for seaside spa service day or night.

  • Island Breeze Spa & Salon is a full-service day spa offering massages, body treatments, facials and more.
    Website  |  (310) 510-7242
  • The Spa at Catalina is a full-service day spa located at the Catalina Canyon Resort & Spa. Services include massages, body treatments, facials, pilates, readings and more. They boast some of the largest massage rooms on the island with private showers for two.
    Website  |  (310) 510-9255
  • Catalina Sea Spa is a full-service day spa offering deep tissue, Swedish, heated stones, or Ashiatsu bar therapy massage. Enjoy at their facility in downtown Avalon or in the privacy of your own room.
    Website  |  (310) 510-8920
  • Massages By the Sea is located in a private cabana on Descanso Beach. Services include Swedish massage, deep tissue massage, reflexology, aromatherapy and exfoliating foot scrub. Try their 15-minute quick-fix massages or a moonlight couples massage.
    Website  |  (310) 510-3331
  • Simply Nirvana offers massages, body wraps, body scrubs and foot reflexology.
    Website  |  (310) 510-2200
  • Aurora Hotel & Spa has an on-site day spa offering Swedish, deep tissue and Reiki massages, body wraps and Thai stretching.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0454
  • Hotel Metropole has a full-service day spa offering massages, body treatments, stone therapy, reflexology, scalp treatments, foot scrubs and facials.
    Website  |  (310) 510-1884

Shopping is limited to the quaint town of Avalon, which offers plenty of boutique shops, markets and gift shops. Come without a bathing suit? No Problem. Need an outfit for an upscale dinner? You're covered. From groceries and camping supplies to exquisite jewelry and fine art, Avalon has anything you need. The Hotel Metropole features a small shopping center with clothing, beach wear, jewelry, souvenirs, toys and more.
Website


The Descanso Beach Club is open to the public for a small fee and features a white sandy beach, oceanfront restaurant, bar and interesting activities & entertainment. Activities include swimming, snorkeling, snuba diving, kayaking, ziplining and rock wall climbing. The beach offers imported white sand, luxury loungers with sunbrellas, fire pits, private cabanas, food & beverage service and a massage cabana. Cabanas and Lounge chairs are rented at a fairly steep price. Descanso Beach Ocean Sports rents stand-up paddleboards (SUP) and a variety of kayaks including glass bottom kayaks. They also offer guided kayak tours to pristine spots. Descanso Beach is the starting point for Zipline Eco Tours that has 5 zip lines strung across Descanso Canyon offering the only ziplining on the island. Descanso Beach is the spot for nightlife on Catalina with happy hour, DJ beach parties and occasional live performances. Located north of the Catalina Casino.
Website  |  (310) 510-7410


The Avalon Theatre shows blockbuster movies in the historic Catalina Casino. The interior features impressive art deco murals and amazing acoustics. Only one movie is shown at a time for one week increments. Open nightly and matinee showings are available Thursday through Saturday. The Avalon Theatre is located on the first floor of the Catalina Casino.
Website  |  (310) 510-7410


Catalina Hotels

Hotel Metropole is located just steps from the beach in downtown Avalon, the Hotel Metropole is one of the more popular Catalina Island hotels. Hotel amenities include a small shopping center and full-service day spa. Room choices include standard guest rooms, oceanfront mini suites, a VIP wing and detached beach house. Room amenities can include an oceanview balcony, fireplace, flat screen TV, Jacuzzi tub and sleeper sofa.
$100-$200  |   $200-$300  |   $300+

Hotel Metropole
205 Crescent Avenue
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-1884

Map  |   Website


The Avalon Hotel is located just a short distance from the beach in downtown Avalon, the Avalon Hotel is one of the more popular Catalina hotels. This craftsman-style boutique hotel offers amenities like a roof-top oceanview deck, garden patio, koi pond, fire pit, continental breakfast, transportation from boat terminal, afternoon refreshments and internet. Fifteen rooms include balcony view, garden view and oceanview. Room amenities include a refrigerator, microwave, flat-screen TV, coffee and more.
$100-$200  |   $200-$300  |   $300+

The Avalon Hotel
124 Whittley Avenue
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-7070

Map  |   Website


Hotel Vista Del Mar is located just steps from the beach in Avalon, Hotel Vista Del Mar is one of the more popular Catalina Island hotels. The hotel is situated on the third floor above Steve's Steakhouse and shopping. Hotel amenities include an expansive atrium lobby with panoramic oceanviews. Fifteen room options include courtyard guest rooms, a courtyard suite and oceanview suites. Room amenities include oceanviews, Jacuzzi tub, wet bar, refrigerator, fireplace, continental breakfast, beach towels & chairs, WiFi and more.
$100-$200  |   $200-$300  |   $300+

Hotel Vista Del Mar
417 Crescent Avenue
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-1452

Map  |   Website


Hotel Villa Portofino is located a short distance from the beach on the north side of Avalon. Hotel Villa Portofino is a Mediterranean-style seaside resort. Hotel amenities include a spacious oceanview sun deck, continental breakfast and baggage hold for early check-in & late check-out. Room amenities include a refrigerator, coffeemaker, TV, hairdryer, irons, air conditioning and more.
$100-$200  |   $200-$300  |   $300+

Hotel Villa Portofino
111 Crescent Avenue
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-0555

Map  |   Website


The Edgewater is located just steps from the beach and the Green Pleasure Pier in downtown Avalon, The Edgewater is one of the more popular Catalina hotels. This boutique hotel offers 2 oceanview suites and 6 fountain view rooms. Hotel amenities include continental breakfast, happy hour refreshments and beach chairs & towels. Room amenities can include oceanviews, WiFi, a flatscreen TV, air conditioning, mini bars and sitting porches.
$100-$200  |   $200-$300  |   $300+

The Edgewater
415 Crescent Avenue
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-8474

Map  |   Website


Inn on Mt. Ada photo courtesy of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce

The Inn on Mt. Ada is located south of Avalon on Wrigley Road, The Inn on Mt. Ada is the most luxurious Catalina hotel. The Inn is perched atop a hill above the boat terminal and overlooks all of Avalon. Once the home of William Wrigley, Jr. and his wife Ada, this Georgian Colonial home is most historic Catalina Island hotel. Guests who have stayed at the Inn include Calvin Coolidge, Warren Harding and the Prince of Wales. Hotel amenities include a formal dining room, sun terrace, complimentary golf cart, full meals and arrival transportation. Room amenities can include a fireplace, private balcony, full bath and panoramic oceanviews.
$200-$300  |   $300+

The Inn on Mt. Ada
398 Wrigley Road
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-2030

Map  |   Website


Cabins are housekeeping cabins located in the heart of Two Harbors. They are large enough to sleep two people and feature a refrigerator, heater, closet, bed(s) and a community kitchen, bathroom and coin-op showers. Guests can bring their own sleeping bags, pillows and linens or reserve a linen package ahead of time. Only available November through April.
$50-$100

Catalina Cabins
Two Harbors, CA 90704
(310) 510-4205

Map  |   Website


Catalina Restaurants

Steve's Steakhouse is located at the edge of Avalon Bay on the second floor of the Vista Del Mar building. Steve's Steakhouse features a beautiful bar and restaurant with oceanfront views making it one of the more popular Catalina restaurants. This award winning restaurant serves traditional steak and seafood fare with choices like Filet Mignon, Swordfish, Buffalo Burger, Steak & Shrimp, Famous Boston Clam Chowder, Calamari Sandwich and more. Dress is casual to formal. Open daily during the summer for lunch and dinner - lunch days are limited during the winter.
$10-$20  |   $20-$40

Steve's Steakhouse
417 Crescent Avenue
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-0333

Map  |   Website


Avalon Grille is located on the Avalon waterfront at the base of the Green Pleasure Pier makes Avalon Grille one of the more popular Catalina restaurants. Avalon Grille features an upscale atmosphere with a central bar, patio dining and a restaurant with large windows that open completely for open-air dining. They serve American cuisine choices like Eggs Benedict, Buffalo Burger, Lobster Mac n' Cheese, Dungeness Crab Dip, Cioppino, Prime New York Strip, Catch of the Day and more. Dress is casual to business-casual. Open nightly for dinner, Friday-Sunday for lunch and weekends for breakfast.
$5-$10  |   $10-$20  |   $20-$40

Avalon Grille
423 Crescent Avenue
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-7494

Map  |   Website


The Lobster Trap is located in downtown Avalon, one block up from the Green Pleasure Pier. The Lobster Trap is a laid back restaurant & bar that claims to be 'The Best Value in Town'. They specialize in seafood and pasta with choices like White Sea Bass, Seafood Pasta, Pesto Penne, Smoked Albacore Sandwich, Seafood Kabobs, Oysters Rockefeller, Chicken Cordon Bleu and more. Guests have several choices of how they'd like their fish prepared. Dress is casual. Open daily for lunch and dinner.
$5-$10  |   $10-$20  |   $20-$40

The Lobster Trap
128 Catalina Avenue
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-8585

Map  |   Website


Ristorante Villa Portofino is located on the Avalon waterfront, which makes it one of the more romantic Catalina Island restaurants. Ristorante Villa Portofino is an award-winning Italian restaurant that offers patio dining with oceanviews and a warm Tuscan Restaurant. Menu choices include Insalata Greca, Lasagna Tradizionale, Tortellini di Formaggio, Linguine alla Portofino, Cioppino, Pollo alla Marasala, fine wines, desserts and an espresso bar. Dress is business casual to formal. Open nightly for dinner only.
$10-$20  |   $20-$40

Ristorante Villa Portofino
101 Crescent Avenue
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-2009

Map  |   Website


Luau Larry's is located on the Avalon waterfront at the base of the Green Pleasure Pier, Luau Larry's is one of the most popular Catalina bars. Luau Larry's is a laid back restaurant & oyster bar featuring live entertainment and a wacky Tiki atmosphere. Comfort food choices include Hamburger Kona, Kaleponi Sandwich, Oyster Shooters, Deep Fried Calamari, Luau Salad, Jalapeno Chili Poppers and more. Try one of their local specialty drinks like the Wiki Wacker or Baffalo Milk. Dress is casual. Open daily for lunch and dinner.
$5-$10  |   $10-$20

Luau Larry's
509 Crescent Avenue
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-1919

Map  |   Website


The Cottage Restaurant is located at the south end of Avalon Bay between the Catalina Island ferry terminal and Green Pleasure Pier. Also known as 'Pancake Cottage', they specialize in breakfast but also serve lunch and dinner. Menu choices include Carne Asada, Cheese Blintzes, Eggs Florentine, Apple Pancakes, Boar Hunter Sandwich, Chili Bowl, Seafood Primavera, Fish Tacos and much, much more. Dress is casual. Open daily for breakfast, lunch and dinner.
$5-$10  |   $10-$20

Pancake Cottage
615 Cresent Avenue
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-0726

Map  |   Website


Descanso Beach Club is located north of Avalon in a semi-private beach cove. Descanso Beach Club is an exclusive cove offering activities, entertainment, dining and beach fun. The open-air restaurant offers some of the best restaurant views on the island. Or choose to have your meal delivered directly to your location on the beach. The beach features fire rings and beach-side bars. Dress is casual. Open daily during the summer months.
$10-$20  |   $20-$40

Descanso Beach Club
1 Descanso Avenue
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-7410

Map  |   Website


Harbor Reef Restaurant is located at Two Harbors at the far end of the island. Harbor Reef Restaurant features a South Pacific atmosphere with views of the Isthmus Bay. Steak and seafood menu choices include Coconut Shrimp, Clam Chowder, Fresh Catch, Rib Eye Steak and Harbor Reef Burger. Watch for the swordfish flag on the pier to signify fresh swordfish. Dress is casual to business-casual. Open Friday and Saturday nights for dinner only. Dinner is served in the Harbor Reef Saloon next door when the restaurant is closed.
$10-$20  |   $20-$40

Harbor Reef Restaurant
Two Harbors, CA 90704
(310) 510-4215

Map  |   Website


DC-3 Grill is located at the Airport in the Sky 10 miles up the road from Avalon, DC-3 holds the distinction as the highest restaurant on the island. Choose from outdoor or indoor seating by a large stone fireplace. Traditional fare menu choices include Big Bacon Scramble, Breakfast Burrito, Buffalo Burger, Avocado Walnut Sandwich, Tri-Tip Tacos, Mexican Caesar Salad, Corn Dog and Killer Cookies. They also provide meals that can be prepared at your campsite. Dress is casual. Open daily for breakfast and lunch.
$5-$10  |   $10-$20

DC-3 Gifts & Grill
1 Airport Road
Avalon, CA 90704
(310) 510-2196

Map  |   Website


Airports near Catalina

Airport photo courtesy of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce

Airport in the Sky is the only airport on Catalina Island. Airport in the Sky services small private aircraft and is located on a peak high above Avalon. An airport shuttle is available for getting from the airport to Avalon. The road from Airport in the Sky to Avalon is a 10-mile picturesque ridge-line road. Also located at the airport is the Catalina Nature Center and DC3 Gifts & Grill.
Website  |  (310) 510-0143


Catalina Island Heliport is located near the Catalina ferry landing south of Avalon. A helicopter ride with Island Express Helicopters from Long Beach to Catalina takes 15 minutes. They also offer service from San Pedro and Orange County.
Website  |  (310) 510-2525


LAX offers convenient access to the 'South Bay' beach cities and central Los Angeles County. The closest Catalina Island ferry is from San Pedro.
MORE DETAILS


Long Beach Airport offers convenient access to southern Los Angeles County and northern Orange County. The closest Catalina Island ferry is from downtown Long Beach near Rainbow Harbor.
MORE DETAILS


John Wayne Airport offers convenient access to all of Orange County. The closest ferry to Catalina departs from Newport Beach.
MORE DETAILS


Other options to consider would be Ontario, or Burbank airports.


Getting to Catalina

Catalina Flyer Newport Beach

The most common way to get to Catalina Island from the mainland is by ferry boat. Both Catalina Express and Catalina Flyer offer transportation to the island. Although the Catalina ferry is made as comfortable as possible, it can be a very difficult experience for some. The summer months are crowded and seating is tight. Some visitors can get stuck with outside upper deck seating on cold mornings and others experience sea sickness. We recommend you prepare for extreme wind & cold and take measures against sea sickness prior to departure. A pricier alternative to taking an island ferry is to go by helicopter. This option avoids the crowds and is much quicker.

  • San Pedro Catalina Express is located at the Catalina Sea & Air Terminal in San Pedro and offers 1¼-hour island ferry service aboard a high-speed vessel. Catalina Express offers at least one departure daily. Boat amenities include restrooms, inside cabin seating, outside upper deck seating, full bar, refreshments, snacks and wheelchair accessibility. Upgrades are available for privacy and comfort.
    Website  |  (800) 481-3470
  • Long Beach Catalina Express is located in downtown Long Beach and offers 1-hour Catalina ferry service aboard high-speed vessels. Catalina Express offers several departure times daily. Boat amenities include restrooms, inside cabin seating, outside upper deck seating, full bar, refreshments, snacks and wheelchair accessibility. Upgrades are available for privacy and comfort.
    Website  |  (800) 481-3470
  • Newport Beach Catalina Flyer is located on the Balboa Peninsula in Newport Beach and offers 1¼-hour Catalina ferry service aboard a high-speed vessel. Catalina Flyer offers at least one departure daily during the warm seasons. Service is limited in winter. Boat amenities include restrooms, inside cabin seating and outside upper deck seating.
    Website  |  (800) 830-7744
  • Dana Point Catalina Express is located at the Dana Wharf Sportfishing docks in Dana Point and offers 1½-hour Catalina ferry service aboard a high-speed vessel. Catalina Express offers at least one departure daily. Boat amenities include restrooms, inside cabin seating, outside upper deck seating, full bar, refreshments, snacks and wheelchair accessibility. Upgrades are available for privacy and comfort.
    Website  |  (800) 481-3470

Catalina by helicopter is a pricier alternative to taking a Catalina Island ferry but is much quicker and avoids the crowds, sea sickness and the elements.

  • San Pedro Island Express Helicopters is located at the Catalina Sea & Air Terminal in San Pedro. A helicopter ride with Island Express Helicopters from San Pedro to Catalina is only 15 minutes.
    Website  |  (310) 510-2525
  • Long Beach Island Express Helicopters is located near the Queen Mary and Carnival Cruise terminal in Long Beach. A helicopter ride with Island Express Helicopters from Long Beach to Catalina Island is only 15 minutes.
    Website  |  (310) 510-2525
  • Newport Beach Island Express Helicopters offers flights from the Orange County Airport (John Wayne). A helicopter ride with Island Express Helicopters from Orange County to Catalina is only 18 minutes.
    Website  |  (310) 510-2525

Avalon photo courtesy of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce

Charter a boat and avoid the crowds and other inconveniences of a Catalina ferry. Boat charters offer everything from simple transportation to and from the island to multi-day adventure trips. Some feature sleeping quarters, a restroom, full galley and more for comfortable overnight stays. There's no need for experience since your captain is skilled in ocean navigation and mooring at the island.

  • Huntington Beach Gecko Yacht Charters operates a 40-foot powered catamaran out of Huntington Harbor. The Gecko Gecko features amenities like an under cabin, full galley, sleeping quarters and restroom. A speed boat tender and kayaks are brought along for island fun.
    Website  |  (714) 843-0654

Sailing to Catalina is for those looking to make the trip to Catalina Island an adventure in itself. There are several sailing charters offering trips to the island that come complete with captain and crew where guests are always welcome to assist with sailing operations. Some offer multi-day trips and tours of the island while there. Typical sailing time to Catalina is 4-7 hours depending on wind. The return trip is often times quicker with the wind at your back.

  • Marina Del Rey Climb aboard the Amethyst with Mariner Sailing Charters and set a coarse for Catalina Island. The Amethyst is a 46-foot, traditional wooden sailing yacht that is fully capable of making trips to the island and back. The Amethyst features beautiful varnished teak wood trim and amenities like an under cabin, galley and restroom.
    Website  |  (310) 822-7550
  • Marina Del Rey Blue Pacific Charters offers sightseeing tours, sunset cruises, private events, burials at sea, sailing instruction and Catalina Island trips. The sailing trips are overnight sails to Two Harbors or Avalon. Stay overnight on the boat or on the island.
    Website  |  (310) 305-7245
  • Newport Beach Newport Beach Sailing Charters has a fleet of vessels from 36 to 54 feet in length that can accommodate from 6 to 11 passengers. They offer chartered trips by the half-day to five-day trips that not only visit Catalina Island but other islands of the Channel Islands chain. All of their vessels feature amenities like an under cabin, full galley and restroom.
    Website  |  (949) 209-9931
  • Dana Point Aventura Sailing has a fleet of luxury sailboats from 32 to 43 feet in length. All of their vessels feature amenities like an under cabin, galley and restroom. Keep an eye out for dolphins, whales and other sea life along the way.
    Website  |  (949) 493-9493
  • Oceanside Hop aboard the Bueno with Sunset sails and navigate your way to Catalina Island. The Bueno is a 36-foot luxury sailboat complete with an under cabin, full galley, restroom, swim step and hot showers. They offer chartered trips to Catalina complete with island tours like hiking, snorkeling and Avalon nightlife. Guests are welcome to stay aboard the Bueno or a hotel on the island.
    Website  |  (760) 207-5572

Avalon photo courtesy of Catalina Island Chamber of Commerce

Catalina Island moorings and anchorage points are available at a dozen locations for visitors with their own boats. Moorings are rented by the day and can accommodate just about any size vessel. Boaters must contact Harbor Patrol on VHF channel 9 upon arrival. Avalon Harbor offers many boater services including water taxi, shoreboat service, fuel, head pump, showers, restrooms and more. Limited services are available at Catalina(Cat) Harbor and Isthmus Cove.

Avalon Mooring Info  |  (310) 510-0535
Two Harbors Mooring Info  |  (310) 510-4253
Other Mooring Sites


Getting Around Catalina

The Avalon Trolley is one of the cheapest ways to get around Avalon other than on foot. Pay for one way, round trip or all day hop-on, hop-off service. Nearly a dozen scheduled stops around the small town of Avalon include the Wrigley Memorial & Gardens, boat terminal, Catalina Casino and Descanso Beach. The Avalon Trolley makes one trip around Avalon every hour all day long.
(310) 510-0342


Golf cart is the most popular form of transportation on Catalina Island. Cars are restricted so most people get around in golf carts. Several vendors on Catalina rent golf carts by the hour.

  • Catalina Island Golf Carts (Cartopia) rents 4 and 6 passenger golf carts for 2 to 3 hour segments. They have 2 locations in Avalon; one near the Catalina ferry landing and the other in town.
    Website  |  (310) 510-2493 and (310) 510-0111
  • Catalina Golf Cart Rentals rents gas-powered golf carts by the hour. Located near the Catalina Island ferry landing dock.
    Website  |  (310) 510-1456

Catalina Island biking on varies from pedaling around Avalon on a beach cruiser or electric bike to mountain biking the steep backcountry. Catalina offers 40 miles of trails and roads for mountain biking. Permits are required for biking any island trails and can be obtained from the Conservancy Explore Store in Avalon, Nature Center, Wrigley Memorial & Botanic Garden, Airport in the Sky, Two Harbors Visitor Center or online for a $35 fee. Catch a shuttle for a small fee and go for a one-way downhill ride from the airport to Avalon.
Website

  • Brown's Bikes rents electric bikes, beach cruisers, mountain bikes, tandem bikes and even wheelchairs and strollers. Rent a bike for any ability from cruising around town to traversing the backcountry trails.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0986
  • Catalina Auto & Bike Rental rents golf carts and bikes for any ability from cruising around town to traversing the backcountry trails. Their second location at Crescent and Metropole rents bikes.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0111
  • Catalina Jet Ski and Electric Bike Rentals rents jet skiis and electric bikes. Electric bike rentals make it easy to explore the town of Avalon with little effort. Located between the Catalina Island ferry pier and Green Pleasure Pier.
    No Website  |  (310) 510-2221

Island shuttles and buses run at regular intervals and can get you to any part of the island. None of them are free and range in price from a few dollars to more than twenty. They are accustomed to shuttling hikers, bikers and campers complete with gear. Some visitors to Catalina purchase round-trip tickets as a sightseeing adventure.

  • Catalina Transportation Services offers many island transportation options including taxis, shuttles, specialty vehicles and Jeep tours.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0342
  • Safari Bus travels between Avalon and Two Harbors daily during the summer months. It has regular stops at Little Harbor, Airport in the Sky, and the Black Jack trailhead. Tickets are available at Discovery Tours ticket booths and the visitor center at the foot of Isthmus Pier.
    Website  |  (310) 510-4205
  • Wildlands Express Shuttle (Airport Shuttle) travels daily between Avalon and the Airport in the Sky year round. Hikers, bikers and sightseers use Wildlands Express as an inexpensive way to access Catalina's interior.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0143

Transportation Services offers many island transportation options including taxis, shuttles, specialty vehicles and Jeep tours. Call ahead and have a taxi waiting for you at the boat terminal or heliport.
Website  |  (310) 510-0342


Island Water Charters offers transportation by boat to anywhere on the island. They can accommodate up to 27 passengers and have experienced captains.
Website  |  (310) 510-9280


Kayaking is one of the island's most popular sports. Whether paddling Avalon Bay, heading to a hidden beach or hauling camping gear to a boat-in campsite, kayaks are available throughout the island. Leave the snorkel gear at home and rent a glass-bottom kayak for exploring pristine coves and kelp beds.

  • Wet Spot Rentals rents kayaks and snorkel gear and are located at two spots on Catalina Island; the Avalon Boat Landing within a short walk of Lover's Cove and Little Harbor. Kayaks include singles, doubles and glass-bottoms that can be rented by the hour or day.
    Website  |  (310) 510-2229
  • Descanso Beach Ocean Sports rents kayaks, stand-up paddleboards (SUP), snorkel gear, bodyboards, swim fins and wetsuits. Kayaks include singles, doubles and glass-bottoms that can be rented by the hour or day. They also offer guided kayak tours to hidden beaches and pristine kelp gardens. Descanso Beach Ocean Sports is located north of the Avalon Casino.
    Website  |  (310) 510-1226
  • Joe's Rent-a-Boat rents single, double and stand-up kayaks. Combine your kayak rental with snorkel gear or fishing tackle for a fun-filled day. Joe's is located on the Green Pleasure Pier.
    Website  |  (310) 510-0455
  • Two Harbors Dive & Recreation Center rents single and double in varieties specialized for sightseeing, fishing, diving, snorkeling and camping. Kayaks are rented by the hour, half-day or day.
    Website  |  (310) 510-4272

Weather on Catalina

NOTICE: Temporary Drought Update California is in the grip of a severe drought. Very little rain or snow has fallen in recent years and temperatures are warmer than average. Inclement weather is rare during any season.


Winter brings average lows in the 50's and highs in the upper 60's. Mostly rain and rare hail storms occur.


Spring brings average lows in the 60's and highs in the mid-70's. Rain showers can occur through May.


Summer brings average lows in the 70's and highs in the mid to upper 80's. Humidity can make those temperatures seem higher. Once or twice a year, Santa Ana winds blow in from the desert reducing humidity and increasing the heat to the high 90's+. Summer brush fires are a regular occurance. Marine layer is a common occurrence and blankets the region with clouds, but often burns off by midday.


Fall brings average lows in the low 60's and highs in the 70's. Mostly rain and rare hail storms occur.


Ocean water temperature ranges from the 50's in winter to the upper 60's in summer.

The Weather Network

Catalina Events

The 50-Mile Run is a charity fund raiser and one of the most challenging runs in the country. The course just about covers the entire length, width and height of the island with climbs of 1600, 1400 and 800 feet sometimes repeated.
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The Catalina Island Conservancy Marathon starts at Two Harbors and heads for Avalon. Several course lengths include the 24.75- mile marathon, a 10K, 5K and Kids Run. Course elevation reaches 1600 feet near the end.
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The Catalina Island Classic is a thrilling downhill skateboard race into Avalon. The course is 1.2 miles in length with plenty of curves, cliffs and descent. Racers compete for a grand prize.
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Avalon Restaurant Week kicks off with Taste Around Avalon and features nearly a dozen local restaurants. Start off the night before the event with tastes from participating restaurants. Spend the entire week sampling the prix fixe menus of your favorite restaurants.
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Catalina Crossing is a two day event featuring teams of paddlers in outrigger canoes racing from Newport Beach to Catalina. The first Catalina Crossing event took place in 1959 with outriggers that were imported from Hawaii.
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The Catalina Festival of Art displays the works of local artists. See art demos and take part in workshops to make your own art. Or, go the easy route and purchase a piece from the festival.
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The Catalina Film Festival features more than 75 films shown at multiple venues around Catalina Island. The centerpiece of the festival is the art deco Avalon Theatre located in the Catalina Casino. Awards are given out in up to 10 categories.
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The Catalina Island JazzTrax Festival is held in the Avalon Ballroom atop the Catalina Casino. Top jazz artist converge on Catalina for 2 weekends of smooth sax, piano and guitar sounds.
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The Catalina Island Triathalon is held in Avalon and features a ½-mile swim, 15-mile bike ride and 3-mile run.
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The Catalina Island Eco-Marathon features a 25.5-mile run from Avalon to the Airport in the Sky and back. The course follows roads and hiking trails up to 1600 feet. A shorter 10K course winds around Avalon.
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Find many more events on Catalina including chili cook offs, concerts, beach parties, fishing derbies, microbrew fests, ballroom dances, cycling, holiday celebrations and more.
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