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Santa Cruz Island

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Address: Pacific Ocean, Channel Islands National Park, CA
Phone Number: 805-642-1393
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Description:

Located off the coast of Santa Barbara, this island is a popular place for...

Located off the coast of Santa Barbara, this island is a popular place for kayaking and exploring sea caves.

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Book In Advance
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$209.00*
and up
Sea Cave Kayaking at Channel Islands National Park
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$199.00*
and up
Painted Cave Kayaking Tour at Channel Islands National Park
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$233.00*
and up
Kayaking and Kelp Forest Snorkeling at Channel Islands National Park

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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A superquick hike with some planning

I was fascinated by the idea of visiting the Channel Islands ever since I read about it in a travel magazine. Wasn't sure how much to expect since there was a 4 year old involved... read more

5 of 5 starsReviewed 2 weeks ago
RajeSanDiego
,
San Diego
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185 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 179: English reviews
San Diego
Level Contributor
8 reviews
7 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 2 weeks ago

I was fascinated by the idea of visiting the Channel Islands ever since I read about it in a travel magazine. Wasn't sure how much to expect since there was a 4 year old involved and since the boats seemed to be docking a mile from shore. Safety, energy and food were concerns. So here's what we did to smoothen... More 

Helpful?
Thank RajeSanDiego
Escondido, California
Level Contributor
6 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Not rated at the top of my National Park list, but still an adventure. Fairly easy hikes for a day trip, really about 4-5 hrs once you get off the boat and back in time to reboard. Landed at Scorpion Ranch and had a hour tour with a Ranger which ended at Cavern Point, to learn about the history, plants... More 

Helpful?
Thank mdemler57
Moorpark, California
Level Contributor
16 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago via mobile

Santa Cruz was amazing. We took a kayak tour with Aquasports and ventured through some magnificent sea caves which reminded me of parts of Kauai's Napali Coast. The water visibility was about 20 feet where you could see schools of fish. We saw a lot of sea lions and marine birds as well. The island offers some good hiking, too.... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank Y_Kathy
San Luis Obispo, CA
Level Contributor
110 reviews
47 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Sites at Scorpion Ranch campground are very close together & quiet time is not enforced. Rangers should do rounds after dark. I slept very little due to some people at the next site. They ranted for hours, then again at 12:30 am, then again at 2:30 am.... Very little to do at Santa Cruz. I hiked 16 miles, took a... More 

Helpful?
Thank Backpacker_0905
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
9 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Seriously folks, go visit this place. The number of people are limited on the island so it won't be crowded like Yellowstone or Yosemite. The air is so clean and crisp. Everyone we encountered was really nice. The little grey foxes are everywhere so you are sure to spot at least one. The weather was amazing. It wasn't hot or... More 

Helpful?
Thank Yvonne1999
Bergen Co., New Jersey
Level Contributor
80 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 82 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

Took a day trip via Island Packers (Ventura Harbor) to Santa Cruz on a Saturday morning with my 15 y.o. son. The only practical way to the island is to take the Island Packers ferry, which takes about an hour. We reserved our ferry ticket online a few weeks before the trip and the 5:00 p.m. return sailing was already... More 

Helpful?
2 Thank World17
Mentor Ohio
Level Contributor
3 reviews
4 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

Very calm, pleasant ferry ride from Ventura to the island. Island Packers did a great job getting us off the boat and to the shore on the skiffs. Very rustic island, this is not Catalina! Hiking and views were wonderful. We took Potato Harbor Road and were able to see the beautiful, serene landscape of the island. I'm not a... More 

Helpful?
Thank Sandra R
Fairfax, Virginia, United States
Level Contributor
17 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 24, 2016

An amazing day of kayaking, snorkeling and hiking. The views are breathtaking. Our guide was wonderful and the boat crew were really nice. If you're looking for a fun day this is the thing to do. Great for beginners too

Helpful?
2 Thank Rita S
Santa Barbara, California
Level Contributor
12 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2016

Santa Cruz Island was beautiful, had taken a day cruse some 20 years ago -- island at that time still decimated by feral sheep and pigs -- what a difference the National Park service and Nature Conservancy have made there. Camped 3 days, kayaked in the caves (guided by SBAdventure, who also setup the camp site and provided infrastructure as... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank Forrest B
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
40 reviews
20 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 22, 2016

I already reviewed the island elsewhere. Whether you're a camper or a day visitor, treat yourself and visit this island in the Channel Islands National Park.

Helpful?
Thank Daniel C

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  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?