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Definition of a wanderluster: A person with very strong desire to travel.

Catalina’s recent renaissance has re-imagined the island, transforming it from a sentimental getaway to a mecca for adventure, conservation and discovery. A world-class day spa, adventure activities and innovative restaurants are just a few of the many signs that this is not the sleepy Catalina Island from your childhood. Today’s Catalina Island provides inspiration and authentic experiences that are found nowhere else on earth; while the quaint village of Avalon maintains its nostalgic charm, brimming with history and a unique culture. Santa Catalina in the 21st century is the ideal destination for the Southern California wanderluster in us all.

Few vacations start before you even arrive at your destination, but the journey to the island provides a glimpse of what’s to come. Ferries to Catalina Island are washed in sea spray, the salt air tempting your senses. Dolphins are frequently spotted and, depending on the time of year, travelers may spot gray whales or blue whales. Another Catalina Island travel option is a helicopter, regular flights to the island whisk travelers above the waves. No matter how you arrive, as Catalina Island emerges from the distance, its silhouette promises adventure. Dramatic ridgelines, steep crags and isolated beaches beckon – this island is a haven for adrenaline junkies and soul-searchers alike.

Although it’s less than two dozen miles from the Southern California mainland, Catalina Island is a world away – and it is a world like no other. Protected from development by the Catalina Island Conservancy, Santa Catalina features 76 square miles and 50-plus miles of coastline just waiting to be explored. The Trans-Catalina Trail traverses the island, offering a day’s hike or a multi-day adventure. Unique native wildlife and dramatic imported species roam the island – American bald eagles, Catalina Island foxes and American bison all live on the island and are frequently seen by visitors.

Experiencing the island is only limited by your imagination. Catalina’s trails and rustic roads call to hikers and mountain bikers alike. Ziplines whisk adventurers from the mountain to the sea at 45 miles per hour. Plunging beneath the surface offers a whole other world to explore – Santa Catalina is one of the top scuba destinations in the country and snorkeling is great way to see beneath the sea. Kayaking and paddleboarding along the front side of the island offer the opportunity to spot eagles, dolphins and playful sea lions.

Avalon, Santa Catalina’s only city, is the center of activity on the island. Fascinating history, unique experiences and an unforgettable atmosphere reminiscent of a Mediterranean village make this destination one to be cherished. Lifetime memories happen here – whether you’re getting away from it all with friends or reconnecting with loved ones.

Looking for something even more remote? Two Harbors, at Catalina Island’s isolated West End, is one of the most secluded spots in Southern California. Adventure and isolation abound at the West End, where bald eagles soar over steep crags and diminutive Island foxes forage on the hillsides. Scuba diving, hiking, kayaking and mountain biking are top activities in this unique outpost.

Vacation rentals offer an ideal option for accommodations on Catalina Island. With plenty of room to relax and options for nearly any size traveling party, a vacation rental offers an authentic alternative to traditional hotels. Located in Avalon neighborhoods, vacation houses allow you and your traveling party to stay in someone’s home, where you’ll be surrounded by the Catalina Island community. A vacation rental becomes your home away from home – you hold the key to someone else’s cherished home. Staying with Catalina Island Vacation Rentals also allows you to get to know your neighbors, many of whom are full-time island residents who are not on vacation.

Catalina Island Vacation Rentals offers Avalon condos, Hamilton Cove Villas, Two Harbors Casas and Avalon homes and cottages. Please call us today or search our website to find your ideal vacation rental on Catalina Island.