Learning everything there is to know about Catalina Island would take a lifetime. No matter how many times you visit or how many years you spend living here, there’s always something new to discover. Fascinating history, compelling geology and intriguing biology mean that there are always new questions to ask and new facts to learn.
For many visitors, Catalina Island is a completely new destination and the idea of visiting an island getaway presents a unique level of curiosity. Questions from those first-time visitors can be interesting to contemplate.
“Can I drive to Catalina?” Despite the Avalon Blvd exit on the Harbor Freeway, we have to recommend against it.
“Do I need a passport?” No, but it might be fun to make one anyway as a souvenir for your kids.
“What kind of currency will I need?” That depends, what kind do you have?
“What time does the 4 o’clock boat leave” If you’re running late it probably leaves at 3:59.
Many first time visitors are surprised to discover that not only is Catalina Island part of the United States, it’s also part of California and Los Angeles County. Its school is part of Long Beach Unified School system and it is served by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, the Los Angeles County Fire Department and the Los Angeles County Library system. Although we’re 20 or so miles off the coast, we’re still considered part of North America and, geologically speaking, like the rest of southwestern California, we’re on the Pacific plate.