Outdoor Adventures : Catalina Express

Outdoor Adventures

2 girls kayaking on the ocean

Adventure awaits on Catalina by land and sea. The Island has so much open space to rediscover being outside again. As you start planning your next getaway, check out a couple popular excursions that visitors enjoy at their favorite local paradise.

Bison Expedition traveling in the vast backcountry with a bison grazing

Bison Expedition

Climb aboard an open-air biofuel Hummer and go in search of American bison on this exciting expedition into Catalina’s rugged interior. Catalina’s American bison, sometimes referred to as buffalo, are descendants of a small herd left on the Island by a movie crew in the 1920s. Today the Catalina Island Conservancy maintains Catalina's American bison herd at about 150 to protect both the bison and the island’s landscape.

This 2-hour 4-wheeling adventure offers you an excellent opportunity to see American bison in the wild as you journey through favorite grazing grounds of these majestic animals.

While you keep your eyes peeled for Catalina's American bison grazing on the hillsides, your guide will share interesting facts about Catalina's history, flora and fauna. Then it’s down the original 19th-century stagecoach route, which offers sweeping views of the majestic Catalina coast and beautiful blue Pacific all the way back to Avalon.

romantic cliffside table for two overlooking the ocean

Cliffside Happy Hour

Catalina Backcountry and Café Metropole provide a truly unique experience with a cliffside Happy Hour at the Summit and Cottonwood Beach. Sit back with a glass of wine and a charcuterie board to enjoy nature in quiet seclusion. This team specializes in custom experiences that make memories to last a lifetime. Check out their exceptional services from hiking the Trans-Catalina trail to camping services.

diver under the waves surrounded by kelp and sealife

Photo Credit: Justin Burbage

Guided Scuba and Snorkeling Experiences

The kelp forests at Catalina Island are some of the best in the world. You may swim with bat rays, calico bass, giant kelp fish, moray eels, Giant Black Sea Bass (seasonal), octopus or many other local species while flying through columns of lush kelp. As one of the most abundant eco-systems on the planet- the Southern California Kelp Forest will surround you with more aquatic life that you could ever imagine.

Catalina Divers Supply offers a two-hour guided dive for all solo divers or any group of divers that may not be completely comfortable with local conditions or the needed gear. The guided dive offers a seasoned instructor or divemaster that will accompany you as you discover the pristine kelp forest in the Casino Dive Park.

Two girls kayaking off catalina island

Willow Cove Expedition

Your trained naturalist will give kayak instruction and safety orientation before leading the 2.75 mile paddle along Catalina’s scenic coastline to Willow Cove, where you’ll enjoy a picnic on the beach and the fine snorkeling at ‘Mike Nelson Rock’, or you can hike, or just sunbathe – it’s up to you. Suitable for all ages, non-strenuous for beginners.

Fishing Charter

Looking to catch your dinner? Afishinados offers fishing charters led by knowledgeable captains who are experts on local fishing spots. Whether you are an experienced angler or this is your first-time fishing, you and your party will have a great time being on the water.


* To get the latest details on what's open and other travel advisories, visit Love Catalina Island.

Daily Boat Trips To Catalina Island

Discover paradise on Catalina Island with daily ferry trips to and from the island. More than one million travelers choose Catalina Island as their getaway each year and Catalina Express' large fleet of boats make the trip in about an hour, operating every day, year round from three mainland ports - Long Beach, San Pedro and Dana Point.

Escape To Catalina Island

Leave the hustle and bustle of the "mainland" behind. Catalina Island is the perfect place to take a break from the demands of daily life. With so many activities to choose from, your visit to Catalina Island can be adventure-packed or filled with rest and relaxation. With its year round Mediterranean climate, it's the ideal place to enjoy ocean air and sunshine.