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Fall Experiences on Catalina Island

With the mild Southern California weather and less crowds, many would say Fall is one of the best times to visit Catalina Island. From Jazz concerts to thrilling excursions, Catalina has so many activities and events that you can enjoy with your family and friends.

a person that is lit up at night

Special Events

Events are always more special when hosted on Catalina Island. The Fall is the season of many events that have a special island twist to them. Below are a few events you are sure to want to attend.

For the Jazz music connoisseur, there is the 35th Annual Catalina Island JazzTrax Festival happening on October 13-16 and October 20-23. This long running event is a favorite and keeps bringing people back year after year.

How about running a triathlon or half marathon on an island? The Island provides a breathtaking backdrop to a variety of running events throughout the year. In the fall, we have Catalina Island Triathlon, Duathlon & 5k on October 29 as well as the Catalina Island Half Marathon on October 12.

For the pirate in everyone, there is the 32nd Annual Buccaneer Days on Two Harbors on October 6-8. Enjoy music, drinks and delicious food right one beach. Bring your best pirate costume and you might the 1st place in the costume contest.

a man standing next to a body of water

Explore the Interior

When it comes to hiking and biking, Catalina Island cannot be beat. The Island has over 165 miles of trails and roads that beckon all levels of hikers. Immerse yourself in nature with the Island’s unspoiled landscape and spot some its very unique wildlife.

Want to challenge yourself? Try the ultimate hiking challenge on Catalina Island, the Trans-Catalina Trail. The Fall is the perfect time to try this 38.5-mile hike that typically takes 3 to 4 days where you traverse from the east end of the Island all the way to the west end. You will get to camp on some Catalina’s most remote beaches. It will definitely will be an experience you will never forget.

a person sitting in a tent

Camping in Two Harbors

For campers and outdoor enthusiasts, Catalina has the small village of Two Harbors. Located on the west end of the island, this rustic gem is the perfect setting to really get back to nature with one restaurant, one hotel, and one store.

The majority of the lodging options are campgrounds where campers have the unique experience of camping by the beach and waking up to the sound of the crashing waves. Two Harbors Campground offers traditional tent sites as well as tent cabins.

a man flying through the air over a body of water

Thrilling Adventures

Thrilling experiences can be found throughout Catalina Island. This island of adventure has different levels of difficulty so everyone can enjoy a little excitement.

The Catalina Island Zip Line Eco Tour treats you to two hours of adrenaline-fueled fun. You will climb aboard a shuttle that will take you to a ridge top 600 feet above Descanso Beach Club. From there, you’ll enjoy sweeping ocean views as you zigzag down and across the canyon and through a grove of towering eucalyptus trees on five separate lines at speeds approaching 35 mph. Along the way, your guide will share interesting facts about the Island’s flora and fauna.

For those that like more of a challenge, the Catalina Aerial Adventure is unique and challenging outdoor experience. Your heart will be pumping as you climb, swing, and crawl through a series of obstacles suspended in a grove of towering eucalyptus trees.

a group of people standing in a kitchen

Cultural Experience

Catalina has a beautiful history to discover and has been the inspiration for many artists over the years.

Located in the heart of Avalon, the Catalina Museum for Art & History helps you immerse yourself in the Island’s history. The museum celebrates the Island’s unique and vibrant cultural history, featuring collections of Catalina artifacts, photographs, the connection to the Chicago Cubs, its role in World War II and more.

For a more hands on approach to history, the Catalina Tile Experience is a 90-minute tour that gives you the tile making history and lets you get your hands dirty making your own Catalina tile. As you make your way back to town, check out the tile showcased around town.

Here is a small taste of how fun Catalina Island can be during the fall. Start planning that fall experience that will fit your personality. Any Catalina Island getaway begins with Catalina Express, visit to book your travel today.

First Photo by Pat Benter

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