Just about 30 miles off the coast of Southern California lies the tiny island of Catalina. Although small in size - 22 by eight miles - it's rich with California history and provides and abundance of activities for the lover of outdoors. From zip lining to snorkeling and kayaking, you're sure to be entertained. I planned this trip because you can get a free birthday ride to Catalina through Catalina Express and Friday was my birthday!
When we arrived we headed to the beach to lay out for a bit. You can lay your towel down and gaze at the sailboats and yachts parked right in front of you. I highly recommend doing that first since there are only a few small beaches. Next we headed to pick up our golf cart which is the best way to see Avalon, one of the island's two harbors and the main area on the island. We booked with Catalina Island Gold Cart Rentals & Tours online and had to reserve a six-seater because the site said they were sold out of the four-seater. The good thing is you get an extra hour for free by reserving online. The bad thing is the company is lying and you cannot reserve a four-person cart online. That's ridiculous but in the end with the free extra hour, three hours to rent the six-seater ends up being the same as the four-seater for two hours so it worked out.
After driving around, we stopped to see some fun buildings, taste some beer and eat delicious pizza and free pretzels at Catalina Brew House, and grab my free birthday ice cream at Lloyds. Overall it was a fun way to spend my birthday and I recommend a visit if you've never been!
Interesting Catalina facts:
- Actress Natalie Wood drowned while visiting and the circumstances of her death are still questioned by some.
- The Chicago Cubs sprig training camp used to be on the island.
- Marilyn Monroe, then Norma Jean Baker, lived there with her Marine husband.