California is usually a snorkeling destination that falls off the radar for most snorkeling enthusiasts. The waters are generally colder in this area than on other destinations on the coast of the U.S. Because of this, there are not as many snorkel spots here as there are in other areas. However, this doesn’t mean places like Catalina Island in California are not well worth a visit if you love free diving and snorkeling.
Because of the water temperatures, it’s best if you go snorkeling in California in a wet suit. There is even a website dedicated to snorkeling opportunities in the area.
What you can expect to see snorkeling in Catalina
Situated just 26 miles off the cost of Long Beach, California, this island is just waiting to be explored. The gorgeous beaches and scenic routes are well worth a trip in this area.
The water around Catalina Island is calm and filled with wild life. Strangely, Catalina rarely makes it on a list with top snorkeling destinations. However, this is one of the best waters for snorkeling on the West Coast. Also, clear waters give swimmers a visibility ranging between 40 and 100 feet and the temperature is about the same as other areas in California, ranging from 55 to 72 degrees.
Where to snorkel in Catalina Island
The best place for snorkeling in Catalina Island is the Two Harbors are at the Isthmus of Santa Catalina Island. According to the official VisitCatalina tourist website this is one of the best sports for snorkeling. It was voted “World’s Healthiest Marine Environment” by Scuba Diving Magazine.
You can rent snorkel gear at location and a wet suit will cost around 16$. It’s best if you bring your own snorkeling equipment. Keep in mind that one complete snorkel package can be around 35$ and you have no guarantee that everything will fit perfectly.
The kelp forest in this area is absolutely stunning and wild life is abundant.