Visiting Catalina Island by Air or Sea
Island travel is always different than what you might expect from normal California travel. There is no bridge, and you can’t bring your own car to the island—though it’s only a few miles out of your way. Catalina Island is within easy reach of Southern California. For starters, focus on the two main attractions here: Avalon and Two Harbors. Regardless of your method of transportation, it is important to make reservations.
Travelers who are in a hurry can fly to and from the island. There is a helicopter port that meets with Pebbly Beach, and also charter flights to the “Airport in the Sky”. Otherwise, your method of transportation will be boat lines. Boat lines depart from major island locations like Newport Beach, Long Beach and San Pedro. Companies like Catalina Express and The Catalina Flyer can help you travel from the mainland.
Travel by plane, helicopter or ferry to beautiful Catalina Island
Let’s review the departure points to the island. First, we have the Air-Sea Terminal. This terminal goes from San Pedro to Avalon. Second, there is the Catalina Terminal, which goes from Long Beach to Avalon and Two Harbors. Third, there is helicopter service operating from Long Beach to Avalon. Fourth, there is the Newport Boat Terminal, which goes from Newport to Avalon. Fifth, there is the John Wayne Airport, which goes from Orange County to Avalon. Sixth, there is the Long Beach Municipal Airport, which goes from Long Beach to Avalon.
There are a few transportation companies to consult. Catalina Express boats are popular choices and take about one hour. Their seats are airline-quality and they provide drinks and snacks. Catalina Express operates from Long Beach, San Pedro and Dana Point. The Catalina Classic Cruises operates six passenger vessels of various sizes and depart from Queen Mary Landing in Long Beach. Their boats also can be privately chartered and can accommodate birthday parties, family reunions, harbor cruises and corporate events and meetings.
Island Express Helicopters offers flights coming from Long Beach, San Pedro, Santa Ana, as well as from Burbank. You will have a fun 15-minute flight to with picturesque panoramic views of Catalina Island on your way to paradise.
Naturally, Avalon is the main entry point of the island, though a few services go directly to Two Harbors. Moorings around the island include Little Harbor, Catalina Harbor, Parson’s Landing, Emerald Bay, Howlands and Fourth of July. There are also numerous coves around the region, such as Big Geiger, Cherry, Big Fisherman’s and Ripper’s.
Imagine taking a beautiful and exotic island vacation but without being but half a day away from home! You don’t even have to fly if you are afraid of planes. This is one of the easiest vacations to take, but it’s far from ordinary.