|images via here and here|
I have been itching to go on a cruise lately. Maybe it's because we just talked about cruises in my travel sales and marketing class or because I've been reminiscing about spending my 21st birthday on a cruise with a bunch of frat guys. Either way, I know there are a lot of options when it comes to cruises and I'm longing to enjoy one soon. I also know that I don't have the money or time to just randomly book a cruise right now. So instead, I thought I'd share a fun way to experience some time on the open water without completely breaking the bank.
Living back in Orange County has it's perks when it comes to playing tourist in your own city. Besides the great little beach towns, amusement parks and being close to LA, we are also a short boat ride from Catalina Island. Santa Catalina Island, mostly known as Catalina Island or just Catalina, is located a short 22 miles south west of LA. You can easily reach Catalina by boat from one of four harbors in Southern California - Dana Point, Long Beach, Newport Beach and San Pedro.
The best part about Catalina is how easy it is to get there. It takes about an hour from any of the 4 ports and can cost as little as $35 one way. Once you're on the island, there are a lot of fun activities for people of all ages. From snorkeling and glass bottom boat tours, to mini golf and bike rentals, there is fun for everyone! And for us 21+ crowd, the bars do not let you down. I think I remember hearing somewhere that there are more bars than hotels on the island! And, most of them have awesome drink deals!!
Now, I would definitely make it a weekend trip to Catalina, but you could do a day trip if you were on a time constraint. There are lots of hotels and even houses to rent. If you want to rough it, there are even campgrounds, but those require a little hike to get to. If you plan on visiting Catalina, go in the off season. Hotel and ferry expenses drop and you might even have the island to yourself, minus the locals, of course.