“Isolated for over thousands of years”
Channel Islands National Park encompasses five remarkable islands and their ocean environment, preserving and protecting a wealth of natural and cultural resources. Isolation over thousands of years has created unique animals, plants, and archeological resources found nowhere else on Earth and helped preserve a place where visitors can experience coastal southern California as it once was.
You should know: The islands can only be accessed by boat or plane.
The Channel Islands were a highlight of our trip to SoCal! We took a boat the company Island Packers for about $60/person round trip to the largest Island Santa Cruz. They don't run boats everyday, so check the schedule well a head of time! The hiking was phenomenal - trails ranging from a half mile to 10 miles. The longer the hike, obviously, the fewer the people. We did a 6-mile round trip hike and we had the trail to ourselves about 75% of the time! The visitors center both on and off the islands were extremely well done and interesting. Sweeping views of coast line and crystal blue waters. There is camping on the island and we want to go back to SoCal just to camp there! You can also rent Kayaks on the island. A must stop when in SoCal!
Ive been to 7 National Parks so far. Channel Islands is in the top 3. Probably a tie for #1. Anacapa Island is small and can take an hr to complete the walking loop. Santa Cruz is the biggest Island, so much to explore! Still beautiful. Now, Santa Rosa, by far the most beautiful beaches I have experienced so far! In Southern California. Boat ride is 3hrs long, but so worth it! You will get to see lots of sea wildlife there is no need to do a wildlife cruise, just go to Santa Rosa. Check Island Packers for boat date rides, time, and cost.
Dolphins. So many dolphins.
This small destination is perfect for kids. It has lots of touch displays and is small enough to be a quick stop. Stunning views from the top observatory ( bring a jacket it gets windy up top). It’s also right across the parking lot from a safe kids beach and next door to harbor cafe.
Beautiful! It was wonderful being away from everything but nature for a day. We even rode alongside dolphins on the boat ride there!
Be the first to add a review to the Channel Islands National Park.
Channel Islands National Park
- Sun - Sat: 8:30 am - 5:00 pm
Problem with this listing? Let us know.
Good for bird watching, boating, and 8 more activities.
Credit Cards Accepted
- National park
Related Trip Guides
Pay Tribute and Reflect at These US Monuments and Memorials
- 14 Places
The Ultimate Guide To Joshua Tree National Park
- 53 Places
- 408 mi
The top things to do on an I-40 road trip
- 35 Places
- 2,851 mi
The top things to do on an I-10 road trip
- 55 Places
- 3,026 mi