Summer is finally here, which means it is time to round up your friends and head to the Island. Whether it’s a bachelor party or weekend trip with guys, Catalina Island has a lot to offer.
Adventure weekend in Avalon
Looking for some adventure? There is plenty of action to be had in Avalon.
Play: Choose from a challenging obstacle course in the trees or an exhilarating Jeep Tour through the Island’s interior or many others. The Catalina Aerial Adventure tour is just a short stroll from Descanso Beach Club, but you’ll feel like you’re deep in the woods, as you climb, swing and crawl through a series of challenging obstacles suspended in a grove of towering eucalyptus. The five self-guided courses are made up of rope ladders, log bridges, balance beams, zip line, and other elements offering aerial excitement for everyone, regardless of skill or athletic ability.
Exploring the Island’s interior is always a fun time and one of the best ways is taking a Jeep Eco Tour offered by the Catalina Island Conservancy. With access to over 200 miles of paved and unpaved roads, the naturalist-led Conservancy Eco Tours allow you to explore parts of Catalina Island no other outfitter can reach. Your group will learn more about the Island’s rich history, see some of its unique plants, wildlife and bison, and simply explore parts of Catalina that most people never see.
Stay: Plenty of accommodation options are available for groups. Hermit Gulch campgrounds allow you to be in nature while still being close to town. Don’t want to rough it? Catalina Island Vacation Rentals has nearly 200 properties to choose from, they offer a wide range of Catalina Island lodging, including luxurious estates, convenient condos and quaint cottages. With all accommodations being so close to town you are never to far away from the action.
Dine: As you wait for your Jeep tour to begin, have a bite to eat at the new Toyon Grill located at the Conservancy’s newly built visitors center, the Trailhead. Consistent with the Conservancy's commitment to sustainability, Toyon Grill offers fresh, hyper-local ingredients. Along with breakfast, lunch and dinner, Toyon Grill will feature specialty coffees, small-batch craft beers, cocktails and California wines. Grab-and-go picnic boxes will be available for adventurers exploring the Island.
Rustic Getaway in Two Harbors
For the outdoorsmen who want to have a rustic experience plan to stay in Two Harbors. Located on the west end of the Island the quaint town of Two Harbors is an outdoor lover’s paradise.
Play: Two Harbors is truly a place where your party can disconnect from the hustle and bustle of the city and take advantage of what nature has to offer. The Dive & Recreation Center has everything you need to enjoy hiking, mountain biking, camping, kayaking, boating, fishing, snorkeling, and world-class scuba diving in the crystal clear water.
Stay: No rustic adventure is complete without a place to lay your weary head after a long day of being out in nature. Two Harbors’ accommodations range from camping sites to stays at the historic Banning House Lodge. So, no matter your taste Two Harbors has a place for you.
Dine: While taking a break from all the activity head down to Harbor Sands, where you can enjoy signature food and drinks from Harbor Reef Restaurant on the waterfront dining deck, or at your beachside palapa or chaise lounge.
Relaxing Stay in Avalon
Maybe your group wants a more relaxed vibe to your Island getaway. Catalina Island has you covered there as well.
Play: Start off your day with a round of golf on a historic course or a scenic fishing expedition on the open sea. A round of golf at the oldest course west of the Mississippi will sure to be a highlight of any boys’ trip. The Catalina Golf Course offers nine challenging holes with two sets of tees for 18-hole play. The long, narrow course meanders through a canyon setting toward the ocean, offering stunning views of Avalon Bay and the iconic Casino. The small greens and deep bunkers are enough to challenge any golfer. Don’t be surprised if you run into a few animal friends. Deer, hawks and island fox love to frequent the area.
If being out in the open water is more your style, Afishinados Charters is the answer. They offer private group charters for fishing, touring or just cruising the waters around Catalina Island on board their top-notch boats. The three boats in their fleet can accommodate groups from four to 49. See parts Catalina Island that are only reachable by boat, and enjoy the scenery that defines a by gone era in California history.
Stay: Tucked back in the picturesque hills of Avalon is the Holiday Inn Resort Catalina Island. This newly remodeled hotel is the perfect place to stay for a weekend getaway. It’s far enough away from town that you can enjoy the quiet but not too far away to miss the fun. It’s also the only hotel on the Island with a pool, so you and the guys can soak up the sun poolside.
Dine: After all this activity, relax and enjoy a bite to eat at the Seaport Bistro located on site at the Holiday Inn Resort Catalina Island. Executive Chef Gregory Wenger treats you to a sampling of his favorite dishes from seaports near and far. Sample flavors from the shores of Mediterranean Spain, Greece, Morocco and Italy. They also highlight the Pacific shores including local Catalina offerings, when available.
These a just a few of the many things Catalina Island has to offer your party. Let your imagination run wild and start planning your trip today. No matter how long you stay, your group is guaranteed to have a great time.
by Guadalupe Rodriguez