Below we have made a list of some of the best things to do in Catalina Island. This list will give you some quick ideas of what you can do on a trip to Catalina. There are hundreds of fun and exciting things to do on Catalina Island. The list we have designed offers just a small part of the options available to you. Catalina Island offers a variety of water activities. You can have fun in Scuba diving, snorkeling, kayaking, jet skis, boating, submarine tours, para-sailing, ocean rafting and more. If you are into water activities, Catalina Island is your place. Alternatively, with more than 75 square miles of land, Catalina Island also has a plenty of land activities to offer. Golf cart rentals, bicycle rentals, interior tours, hiking, camping, zip lining, shopping and day spas are some example. Catalina island also hosts some special events throughout the year. There are so many things to do in Catalina Island, which will compel you to come back.
Top Things to do in Catalina Island
1.) Afishinados Gallery Store
Afishinados Gallery Store presents unique, locally designed fish art in ceramic, glass, steel, wood, island, copper, fabric and re-purposed objects. It includes a grand collection of local artists, flying fish art, Afishinado’s American Apparel Tees for infants, kids and adults as well. It also has the top marine-style jewelry and the coolest collection of fish art which will become your favorite thing to wear. And not to forget if you are looking for some made in China memento, you are in the wrong store. Everything here is made in the USA.
2.) Catalina Island Casino
The iconic Catalina Casino symbolizes everything sensational about Santa Catalina Island. The building presents astonishing Art Deco murals and a classic 1929 pipe organ inside the Avalon Theatre. The theater still shows movies on its giant screen. The top level of this architectural wonder presents the beautiful, world-renowned Casino Ballroom. A stunning piece of design and a long-standing venue for the world’s top musical performers and bands. It is also a famous venue for weddings and special events and programs. The only way to the building is through a special Casino Tour. It is organized through Discovery Tours. Once you visit here, you know why many call this one of the most romantic places in Catalina.
3.) Avalon Theatre
The Avalon Theatre is situated in the lower level of the Catalina Casino building. It was established in 1929. It is among the first theaters designed for talking movies. The original Page organ is still played before starting the movies. The theater offers first-run movies. It has a capacity of 1,184 people. It is around 138 feet across and about 43 feet high. Art deco murals by John Gabriel Beckman adorn the walls and gives a glamorous ambiance.
4.) Catalina Island Casino Ballroom
Catalina Island Casino Ballroom symbolizes everything exciting and romantic about Catalina Island. This Innovative venue is simply dazzling from the inside and outside, and all around. If the thoroughly decorated walls could speak, they’d tell many stories of romance and celebration collected from decades of unforgettable events. The enormous, Deco-themed ballroom is big enough to host weddings, large meetings, lectures or musical events. The Casino has maintained its signature lavish manner. It includes the stunning rose-hued walls, an arching, 50-foot ceiling with Tiffany chandeliers. It also has a lofty stage with raised seating space surrounding the dance floor. Plus, a vintage full-service bar to drink. An extensive veranda bounds the ballroom with dazzling 360-degree views of Avalon Bay.
5.) Catalina Express
There are 8 boats and around 30 daily departures every day from the stretched Beach, San Pedro and Dana Point. Catalina Express is the best way to reach Catalina Island. In an hour, you could be biking, hiking, diving, shopping, snorkeling, paddling, fishing, dining, kayaking, relaxing at a spa or hitting back at the beach club.
6.) Spot flying fish
Flying fish is not a myth! Flying fish push themselves out of the water and glide in the air using their wing-like fins. Seeing flying fish is one of the top things to do in Catalina island. They’re best seen at night and boats take visitors out to look for flying fish. You will have a great time watching the flying fish coming out of the water and flying in front of the boat. You might also get to see the sea lions on the rocks just a little offshore at the east end of Catalina Island.
7.) Silver Canyon Pottery
Silver Canyon Pottery presents a close glimpse into tile production in Catalina Island. It is small, all-inclusive, the tours are personally led by the artist. Here you can learn about the history, geology, artistic traditions, and techniques which created the historic tiles which define Catalina. Most fun of all this is that you can don an apron and can create your own tile. A nice activity to do with your friends or family.
8.) Descanso Beach
Descanso Beach is Avalon’s single seaside private beach club with bar and restaurant. It has been totally transformed to provide improved facilities. It offers new exclusive amenities such as private cabana and chaise lounge rentals. Sit with your feet in the sand. Enjoy cabana dinners and lay back in the heated cabanas while enjoying a three-course meal. This ultimate island dining brings together the best beach-side environment and flavor. That too with the sound of the of the ocean just a few feet away. A popular choice for both locals and visitors. This is a famous escape from downtown.
9.) Airport in the Sky
The Airport in the Sky is located on a 1,602-foot-tall mountaintop at the heart of the Catalina Island. It is 10 miles away from the city of Avalon. It’s an awesome destination by tour or shuttle bus, on foot or bicycle. You can reach there by hiking the Trans Catalina Trail or can also walk over from Black Jack. Plus, you can take a private or chartered small plane. Its single 3,250-foot-long runway was built by blasting and leveling two neighboring peaks. Then, gaps were filled using the resulting debris. Visiting this airport is one of the best things to do in Catalina Island.
10.) Wrigley Memorial & Botanic Garden
The Wrigley Memorial & Botanic Garden is a 30-minute walk up Avalon Canyon from the center of the town. You can take a quick ride by golf cart or a bike, or by trolley also. The Botanic Garden is the prime gateway to reach one of the Island’s most famous hikes, the Garden to Sky Trail. So if you are into hiking, Visiting this spot is one of the top things to do in Catalina Island.