Catalina Island is a rocky island off the coast of California. The island is 22 miles long and 8 miles across at its greatest width.
The island has a rich history. Most of the island is now controlled by the Catalina Island Conservancy, a private nonprofit organization. The mission of the Catalina Island Conservancy is to be a responsible steward of its lands through a balance of conservation, education and recreation. Through its ongoing efforts, the Conservancy protects the magnificent natural and cultural heritage of Santa Catalina Island. Under an agreement with Los Angeles County, the Conservancy has granted an easement to allow day hiking and mountain biking, but visitors must first obtain a permit at the Conservancy's office. Hiking permits are free, whereas bicycle permits are available for a fee. About a million tourists visit the island every year; Catalina is serviced by ferries from Newport Beach, Dana Point, Long Beach, San Pedro, and Marina del Rey. The trip takes approximately an hour and costs approx $65 round trip.
I went to Catalina Island to visit my parents who were attending the annual JazzTrax Festival. I took the ferry from Long Beach and the trip was relaxing. The Island overall is a welcome change if you want to get away from the hustle and bustle of LA. The main drag caters to tourist. I would recommend getting a hiking permit and exploring some of the Island to get away from the commercial side of the Island.