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Catalina Island faces Southern California’s coast, is a short ferry ride from Newport Beach Harbor or Long Beach, and is home to a population of 3,773 (2013). The island’s most populated areas are known as ‘Two Harbors’ and ‘Avalon.’   Both locations give off a small, Mediterranean village vibe and are located on opposite sides of the island.

After arriving by ferry to Avalon you are transported to island time where things are more relaxed. Along with vacationing tourists, the locals consist of fisherman and retired couples. The best way to get around the island is jumping on an electric bike to hit the coastal roads and take in the luscious coastal surroundings. Head west into the island and you’ll stumble upon the Wrigley Memorial Botanical Garden, which houses 37.85 acres of desert plants displayed within a beautifully constructed monument. Catalina Island’s temperate, marine climate makes it possible to showcase plants from every corner of the earth.

Head back into town and you’ll find an array of beach cottages and mansions tucked into the hillsides with 360-degree views of the harbor. One can experience a lot of Avalon’s attractions in a day, everything from scuba diving to zip lining can be found in Avalon alone – just make sure to find time to sit at one of their local bars on the beach and enjoy a cold drink!

Photography by Jordan Minardi