I’m going to start this post off with this;

If you’ve never been to Channel Island National Park, be sure to put it on your bucket list!

It’s a one hour boat ride from Ventura, California to Santa Cruz Island. Add on another hour if you want to make it out to some of the other islands. We saw whales and dolphins along the way. Being hikers, Santa Cruz (Scorpion) is where we were headed!



We were so lucky to go when we did. California doesn’t usually get as much rain as it did this year. Because of that, rare flowers were in full bloom and the mountains were luscious and green. On Santa Rosa Island, there were waterfalls rushing that hadn’t had water in over 10 years. We got a quick tutorial from the tour guide, and quickly headed away from the crowd. They offered guided hikes, but we chose to go on our own. We hiked through rolling hills that made us feel like we were overseas in Ireland, over to the coast that looked like Northern California. We saw a breed of fox that only exists on these Islands, they were so cute!

All of the views on the island were absolutely stunning. The whole day worked in our favor. It was sunny and 80 degrees. We hiked the Potato Harbor trail first, and got to hang out there for 45 minutes before anyone else got there. I think most of the day-trippers went on the guided hike first, and then set out to explore on their own.

If there is a next time here, it will be in the summer. The Pacific ocean was far too cold to swim in the spring! I would also have planned to camp for at least one night. It was really hard to pick my favorite photos to share on here, but here’s what I thought were the highlights!

Be sure to book this excursion in advance! I was very fortunate to book this with such short notice. The boat was booked solid, and we only got a seat the day prior because I called them and they said they would squeeze us in. Got to love nurse perks!


11 thoughts on “California: Channel Island National Park.

  1. Love your photos! After seeing these I might have to visit Santa Cruz Island too! We just got back from Santa Rosa Island and the ride was about 3 hours each way…wonder if we were in the same area around the same time? Your photos of the dolphin and whale are fantastic. 🙂


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