Catalina Island Information

HELPFUL SUGGESTIONS FOR PLANNING YOUR ESCAPE TO THE ISLAND

Who is Catalina Tours?

Catalina Tours was formed three years ago to act as a cooperative of many Catalina Island Businesses.  Our purpose is to market our tours, hotels, restaurants and shops collectively on this web site.  We now have 15 tour operators, 6 hotels, 5 restaurants and 10 shops/walking tours, and growing every year.  By working together on this web site we can offer the Catalina visitor a one stop shopping experience that will make planning and visiting Catalina Island as easy as buying a ticket to Disneyland. All of the staff and owners of Catalina Tours live on Catalina Island, so we know Catalina like no other booking web site. We hope you enjoy shopping on our site and we look forward to seeing you here on the Island soon.

Swimming during your visit to the Island:
We get asked three main questions from our customers about swimming while visiting the Island.

* Sharks! There has not been a shark attack in the waters around Catalina Island which hurt anyone in over 30 years. About 500,000 people swim in our waters per year so it is not something you need to worry about.

* Pollution of the water in Avalon Harbor: We do get occasional reports, during the summer months, of bacteria readings that are considered high by the health department. This only happens in Avalon Harbor and not in any of the waters around Catalina Island. The City of Avalon is spending millions of dollars to find and remedy any sources of pollution in the Harbor. The areas of high bacteria readings do not include areas outside of Avalon Harbor where most of the snorkeling, diving, kayaking or jet skiing takes place. Catalina Island is one of the best places in the country for snorkeling and diving with great underwater clarity and scenery.

* Water Temperature: Please check our water temperature page before ordering swimming or diving activities. Winter water temperatures can be cold.

Weather:

We are not located in a Tropical zone, so we do have cold winters and warm summers. Since the Island is surrounded by water, our air temperature is close to our water temperature. You should always bring a sweatshirt or light jacket for the evening. Even in the summer it can be a little chilly at night. Fall, winter and spring we recommend having a sweatshirt with you even during the day. Most of our rain happens in January, February and March, although it can be stormy in November and December. Our temperatures are about the same as the coastal areas of Los Angeles.

Planning your day of activities on Catalina Island:

We recommend that you don’t overcrowd your day. Sometimes when planning, customers have ordered so many activities that the day becomes more like a day at work. We recommend leaving time to transition between activities, time for lunch and time for just exploring town on your own. Remember, we would love to have you visit again, so kick back, have fun and don’t overbook yourself.

Using one of our “Day Packages” as a first date outing:

Our Day Packages are a great first date activity where all the planning is done for you. But there are a few things you will want to consider before selecting your Day Package:

* Don’t pick something that requires swimming unless you know your date can swim. We see this often and it puts a damper on the day.

* Is your date the kind of person who will want to get in the water, even if they can swim? There are no places to primp in town if you’re here for the day. If they want to get in the water, don’t forget to have them bring their bathing suit and a towel. You can change in the public restrooms around town.

* Check the restrictions listed on each of the Day Packages you are interested in to be sure you both can participate.

* Don’t talk your date into an activity. Find a package with activities that both of you want to do.

* Be sure to get to the Catalina Express terminal with plenty of time to spare, it’s a bummer when you miss your boat. It doesn’t usually impress your date either!

Information and locations for Catalina Express Ports:

Long Beach Downtown Landing (All “Day Packages” depart from this port)

320 Golden Shore
Long Beach, CA.
Terminal offers covered parking at $15 per day

San Pedro Terminal:

San Pedro terminal address does not display accurately on all mapping websites.
For mapping website driving directions use: N Front St & Swinford St, San Pedro, CA

General driving directions:

Take the 110 Freeway south to San Pedro. Take the Terminal Island, Exit 47 ramp.
Stay in the right lane, exit Harbor Blvd. Follow signs to Catalina Terminal.
Uncovered parking is available at $12 per day.

Dana Point Terminal:

34675 Golden Lantern St.
Dana Point, CA.
Ticket office located at Dana Wharf Sportfishing
Uncovered parking available at $12 per day.