How to Get Around Catalina Island

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How to Get Around Catalina Island. Catalina Island--off the coast of Long Beach, California--is one of the most beautiful vacation spots in the country. It's 22 miles from the mainland, and there are no bridges or car ferries. However, there are plenty of other options for getting around while you're there.

Walk. Restaurants, shops and the beach are all close by, whether you stay in Two Harbors or Avalon. Neither encompasses more than a square mile, so there is plenty to do and see on foot.

Bike. There are several bike rental shops on Catalina Island, which offer bicycles built-for-two, single speed and mountain bikes. You can rent for hourly, daily or weekly. There are trails throughout the interior, some rated moderate to advanced, but only certain bikes are allowed out of town; you'll need a permit from the Catalina Island Conservancy, as they own most of the land. If you choose to bring your own bicycle to the island, the ferryboats will charge an extra fee.

Rent a golf cart. Several places rent gas powered carts, and most offer routes and maps for sightseeing around Avalon.

Take a bus. The Safari Bus runs between Avalon and Two Harbors with several scenic stops along the way.

Catch the trolley. It runs two different routes through Avalon from the waterfront, either along the shore or into the interior as far away as the Catalina Island Conservatory.

Rent a car or van. A number of places rent everything from several-passenger vans to a vintage Rolls Royce. Rent a vehicle and a driver to take you wherever you decide to go. There is also taxi service on Catalina.

Tips & Warnings

  • Most people visit Catalina Island in the summer, and some transportation options close or run less frequently during the off-season. Check first if you are traveling during an off-peak time.

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