A picture perfect paradise just 22 miles aways from the mainland, Catalina Island is the perfect weekend getaway from the hustle and bustle of Los Angeles. Below, we list the best of Catalina Island, so that you have everything you need to know for the perfect weekend away!
Best Places to Stay
The Avalon Hotel on Catalina Island is the perfect place for a weekend splurge. Though more pricey than the others on the list, there is nothing that Avalon doesn’t offer. From romantic getaways with couples massages, to helicopter rides and snorkeling, Avalon offers getaway packages for everyone.
Experience style, sophistication and service while overlooking the ocean at Mt. Ada. The bed and breakfast is the former island escape of William Wrigley Jr. and his wife Ada. You’ll be treated like royalty in this one-of-a-kind inn, which offers six en suite guest rooms, each beautifully appointed to reflect a bygone era.
Pavilion Hotel gives you more reasons to stay and more ways to play than any other hotel on the island! At Pavilion you can use Island Spa Catalina’s Wellness Studio, you have access to Descanso Beach Club, and you get complimentary Tours and Activities.
Descanso Beach Club is, in fact, the only public beach on Catalina Island where you can drink alcohol, which means servers bring drinks straight to your chair. The restaurant is the perfect place to grab lunch after lounging on the beach, featuring wings, wraps, quinoa salads, burgers and more. While it's a blanket-to-blanket scene during prime-time beach hours, pros know that after 5 PM when everyone heads back to the hotels to get ready for dinner is the best time to be at the Beach Club. It also happens to be happy hour, which means half-price drinks!
After you grab dinner and drinks at the Descanso Beach Club, head on over to Descano Fresh for handmade frozen treats, and some even have booze. One of the best sellers is the Buffalo Milk ice cream - made with vodka, Kahlua, banana and cream- in scoopable form, ice cream form. They also feature a flavor made with Bailey's Irish Cream and espresso that's studded with big chunks of donuts. And don’t worry, they have family friendly non-boozy ice cream too!
This little tiki bar is just steps from the beach and is constantly full! The crowd favorite drink is the “Wiki Wackers,” filled with light rum, brandy, pineapple and orange juice and grenadine. They also serve yummy food like big sloppy burgers, oysters, Mexican seafood and coconut shrimp.
Best Things to Do
Don’t let the name confuse you; the Catalina Casino is not a gambling hall, and residents of the island insist that it never will be. The massive building is home to the Casino Ballroom, Avalon Theatre, Catalina Island Museum and Catalina Island Art Association Art Gallery. Take a behind-the-scenes tour to learn all about the ballroom and the theater’s glamorous past, as it was once a regular host to big-band legends such as Jimmy Dorsey, Woody Herman and Harry James.
The Catalina Zip Line Eco Tour is perfect for anyone who likes an adrenaline rush! Though one of the island’s newest attractions the two-hour adventure is a must-do activity for Avalon visitors. Two experienced guides accompany each group of thrill seekers through five separate zip lines, which cover almost three quarters of a mile and send participants sailing through the air at speeds up to 45 miles per hour. The longest zip line stretches 1,100 feet, allowing guests plenty of time to take in the scenery as they fly over canyons filled with trees and native plants.