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Address: Off the coast of Santa Barbara and Ventura Counties, Channel Islands National Park, CA
Phone Number: +1 805-893-6431
Website
Description:

The waters that swirl around the five islands within the Channel Islands...

The waters that swirl around the five islands within the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary combine warm and cool currents to create an exceptional breeding ground for many species of plants and animals. Forests of giant kelp are home to numerous populations of fish and invertebrates. Every year over 27 species of whales and dolphins visit or inhabit the sanctuary, including the rare blue, humpback and sei whales. On the islands (which are part of the Channel Islands National Park), seabird colonies and pinniped rookeries flourish while overhead brown pelicans and Western gulls search the water for food. The Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary is located 25 miles (22 nautical miles) off the coast of Santa Barbara, California. Visitors to the Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary can enjoy recreational opportunities such as tidepooling, diving, snorkeling and kayaking.

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Book In Advance
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$179*
and up
Channel Islands National Park Sea Cave Kayaking Experience from Venture Harbor
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$199*
and up
Painted Cave Kayaking Tour at Channel Islands National Park

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

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America's hidden treasure

The Channel Islands are hard to get to,nothing is there, and they are the most closely guarded secret of the National Park system. See California as it was YEARS ago.

5 of 5 starsReviewed 4 weeks ago
J_and_W2013
,
Islamorada, Florida
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11 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 10: English reviews
Islamorada, Florida
Level Contributor
16 reviews
12 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed 4 weeks ago

The Channel Islands are hard to get to,nothing is there, and they are the most closely guarded secret of the National Park system. See California as it was YEARS ago.

Helpful?
Thank J_and_W2013
Visalia, California, USA
Level Contributor
31 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 16, 2016

We passed through, both on the way, and when returning from Santa Cruz island. We had the opportunity to see amazing activity along the way. Along with many, many dolphins, we saw all kinds of sea birds. At one point we saw a feeding frenzy of dolphins, pelicans and other birds. The captain of the boat stopped so was could... More 

Helpful?
Thank iamquestar
Maine
Level Contributor
24 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 30, 2015

The ferry ride out featured whole schools of dolphins following us, and we passed several rafts of sea lions, floating together with their flippers linked. On the island, we came to the top of sheer cliffs and when we peeked over, on our hands and knees, we saw sea lions sunbathing on the beach far, far below. What a spectacular... More 

Helpful?
Thank MHandPM
Denham Springs, Louisiana
Level Contributor
642 reviews
269 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 265 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 27, 2015 via mobile

The visitor center is informational and educational with good interpretive and interactive displays. Really good for kids and adults, and the video is very good.

Helpful?
1 Thank LSUTraveller
Arkansas
Level Contributor
170 reviews
46 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2015

Nice boat ride (Island Packers) to the islands - we saw lots of dolphins, good hiking but plan accordingly - boats leave at certain times and no food or water on the island. There is lots of overnight camping spots. You will learn about early ranching and sadly how the native American culture was destroyed.

Helpful?
Thank UofA1
Missouri
Level Contributor
19 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 10, 2015

We took the island Packers shuttle to Santa Cruze Island where we hiked to Potato Harbor via Cavern point. We had plenty of time to do this hike and could have taken more time to stop and experience the scenery. The scenery was breathtaking! Even though the Channel Islands National Park is the least visited park, don't miss it! The... More 

Helpful?
2 Thank missmartha
Vail, CO
Level Contributor
11 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2014

Taking a boat out to The Channel Island is a must do for all nature lovers. From sea birds, sea lions, seals, dolphins, whales and other marine life to the rare Island foxes This is a must stop when you are in the area.

Helpful?
1 Thank vail38
Cardiff
Level Contributor
408 reviews
184 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 319 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 20, 2013

A Must-Do for anyone in the LA to San Fran corridor. I began at the Ventura Visitors center, watched the amazing video and then drove to Oxnard Marina and got a boat trip "on standby" The TA choices to review this marvel are frustrating as there is no CINP option.! The options to visit the islands or cruise around them... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank Bchgrl9
Brunswick, Maine
Level Contributor
60 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 11, 2012

Watched a 15 minute video about the islands that was narrated by Kevin Costner. It was very informative and made you want to visit the islands.

Helpful?
Thank Pauline G
Ojai, California
Level Contributor
240 reviews
61 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 216 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2011

If you have young children and you want an awesome place to take them to learn about nature and particularly the Channel Islands, take them to the National Park Service's Visitor Center located in Ventura Harbor. Go to the end of the Harbor entrance road, just past the Island Packers where you board boats for a trip out to the... More 

Helpful?
5 Thank CarlOjai

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