If you're looking for an action-packed vacation, you can hike through the backcountry, fly down a zip line 500 feet above the water, or go scuba diving with the area's colorful marine life. Travelers who are interested in something more relaxing can book a day at the spa, take a soothing glass bottom boat tour, or browse the small boutique shops that dot the island.
Miniature golf, Segway tours, peddle boats, and bikes offer leisurely opportunities to soak up some sun and take in the picturesque location. History buffs should make sure to include the Catalina Island Museum on their itinerary. The Wrigley Memorial and Botanical Gardens, Casino Ballroom, and Avalon Theater offer additional highlights.
No matter what you're in the mood for, if it's tropical in nature, Catalina Island can meet your needs. Work up a sweat, or settle in for a massage. Whatever your choice, your time here is sure to prove unforgettable.
When to Visit Catalina Island, California
The weather on Catalina Island is nearly perfect year-round. The average high fluctuates from 75 degrees in summer to 65 degrees in winter. The beautiful island enjoys 270 days of sunshine every year. Winter is the wettest season, but the area still sees only about 15 inches of precipitation a year.
If fishing is big on your agenda, spring is the best time to visit. Temperatures begin to warm up in April, and the conditions for Pacific fishing are ideal. This is also a good time for golfing, hiking, or taking a boat tour. Summer is the best time for water sports, but it's also the busiest season on the island. As such, you can expect the highest prices and most difficulty snagging a room.
For lower hotel rates and thinner crowds, time your visit for fall. The weather is still warm, but you can avoid some of the hassles of peak tourist season.
Below is a chart of the current pricing seasonality of hotels and motels in Catalina Island, CA:
Catalina Island by Star Rating
Below are 3 charts demonstrating mean nightly cost trends by star rating class in Catalina Island, CA. You can use these illustrations to calculate the best seasons to book a room in Catalina Island for upcoming travels.
Luxury Hotel Options in Catalina Island, California
4 Star Average Prices: $164.75
All the hotels in Catalina Island offer the luxury that's associated with a picturesque beach destination, but one stands out above the rest for travelers who want that added touch of elegance. The Pavilion Hotel commands a prime location, just 14 steps from the beach. The morning begins with a complimentary hot breakfast, and the day comes to a close with a charming wine and cheese reception.
Whether you're reclining in a semi-private lanai, gathering around the fire pit with friends, or strolling the tropical gardens, you'll find the ambiance of this resort unparalleled on the island. Complimentary luggage service from the Avalon boat dock makes it easy to settle into your spot at this luxury hotel.
Guest rooms here feature plush down comforters and blackout curtains so it's easy to sink into a deep sleep. An iPod docking station, DVD player, LCD TV with cable channels, and complimentary Wi-Fi offer ample entertainment during your visit. With complimentary bottled water, you can always stay hydrated. An in-room refrigerator makes it easy to keep your own cold beverages handy as well.
Affordable Hotels in Catalina Island, California
3 Star Average Prices: $151.09
Catalina Island is often associated with tropical luxury, but you don't have to drain your travel budget to score a room here. There are several budget-friendly options that will give you a charming room and ample amenities.
One of the most affordable options on Catalina Island is Hotel Atwater. Getting settled at the hotel is easy thanks to complimentary luggage service from the ferry. Its 91 rooms offer ample entertainment with complimentary Wi-Fi, LCD televisions, and cable programming with HBO and Showtime. Divers are more than just welcomed at the Atwater – they're carefully catered to. There's a complimentary storage room on property for diving gear, and rinse-off outdoor showers make it easy to clean up before you head back to your room. This beachfront location is the perfect pick for a low-cost diving retreat.
Another affordable choice on the island is the Glenmore Plaza Hotel. This hotel offers several different room types to suit your needs. Standard rooms feature a flat screen television, seating area, and private bath. Upgrade to a deluxe room for a mini-refrigerator and microwave. Premium queen rooms have all these amenities plus a whirlpool tub in the bath.
If you want more space to stretch out, you'll find several distinctive suites available at the Glenmore Plaza Hotel. Named for famous faces of the past, accommodations like the Marilyn Monroe suite or Amelia Earhart Suite offer more spacious accommodations and distinguishing decorative perks. No matter where you're staying, you can enjoy a complimentary continental breakfast each morning, and a location that's just steps from the beach.