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The snorkelling how good is it?

Kapiti Coast
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The snorkelling how good is it?

My partner and I are travelling to the states around this time next year, doing the pacific coast highway from San Francisco down to San Diego. My partner is a real water boy and snorkelling / skin diving is his thing.

To ensure we both enjoy the holiday and that I dont feel guilty about a day or twos shopping I like to ensure that his needs are met to. Is Catalina Island worth travelling to for the snorkelling or are there other places along the coast that would be better?

Thanks in advance for your help.

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San Francisco
San Francisco
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San Diego
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California
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1. Re: The snorkelling how good is it?

It takes awhile to get to Catalina Island by ferry. Most people I know try to go for an overnight stay (but I know that some folks go over and back in one day). I think it's worth it as a destination since there'd be something for each of you.

Other nice snorkeling can be found on the North Coast (Salt Point [north of SF] or Point Lobos [south of Monterey]), but the water is quite cold there.

Warmer water with nice snorkeling can be found in La Jolla (San Diego). La Jolla also has excellent shops, scenery, food, etc.

I think California's best scuba diving is in Monterey or the Channel Islands (Santa Barbara)-- the Channel Islands will be a long trip via boat and there's nothing in it for the shopper unless you hang out in S.B.

Others may have different opinions...

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Monterey County, CA
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Kapiti Coast
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2. Re: The snorkelling how good is it?

Thanks for that. We are going up to Salt Point and also looking at Whalers Cove. I shall do my shopping on the mainland so no need to worry about that!

What is on Channel islands in the way of snorkelling?

California
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3. Re: The snorkelling how good is it?

I wasn't sure whether you meant Scuba under your "skin diving" comment, hence I included Channel Islands. While I have seen people free dive off the Channel Islands, most people scuba dive there.

Much of the area around the islands is protected and so you'll see more abundant sea life. There's a sizable variety-- google it and you'll see. In areas that aren't protected, you can hunt (if you're into that) for big ol seabass and scallops. But the Islands will entail taking a boat.

Point Lobos is probably better for your needs. Check it out:

http://pt-lobos.parks.state.ca.us/Scuba.htm

California
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4. Re: The snorkelling how good is it?

Oh, duh... Whaler's Cove in Point Lobos... "nevermind, Cheddar."

Avalon Ca.
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5. Re: The snorkelling how good is it?

The snorkling and skin diveing is exelent on Catalina Island.Catalina Island is a one hour ride on a high speed Catamaran.There are two options within walking distance of Avalon. Lovers Cove is a preserve and is great for snorkeling and is about 1/3 of a mile from the center of town. For skin diving Casino Point dive park is great. There are sunken shipwrecks and a beautiful kelp forest. There are several dive shops on the island where you can rent the gear you need. I would recomend Catalina Scuba Luv, but there is also Catalina Dive services. There are dive boats that go out if you are into open water dives, also snorkle trips up the coast. are available. Hope this helps.

Renee

Feel free to contact me if you need other info.

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Catalina Island Inn
Catalina Island Inn
582 Reviews
Catalina Island, CA
The Avalon Hotel
The Avalon Hotel
690 Reviews
Catalina Island, CA
Kapiti Coast
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6. Re: The snorkelling how good is it?

Great thanks for that Renee. No doubt I will contact you if that is okay. We are in the early stages of planning and not sure if we are going to add a week in Rarotonga at the end of the US trip. If we do i wont feel the need to find so many spots to dive in the US, as Rarotonga will keep my partner happy!

Will be in touch. Thanks again.

Minnesota
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7. Re: The snorkelling how good is it?

We are planning a trip to Catalina Island the end of February and would like to try snorkelling. I was just wondering if the water would be too cold. Is there a place on the island where we could rent wet suits for the day?

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Southern California
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8. Re: The snorkelling how good is it?

You will need a wet suit. There are also glass bottom boat and submarine tours.

www.catalinadiverssupply.com

The water off Catalina is much clearer than on the California coast. Its amazing how clear it is considering how close it is to LA.

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Kawhia,New Zealand
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9. Re: The snorkelling how good is it?

Whats the water like in the 1st week of May for snorkelling and can you walk from marina area,

Will be on Carnival Paradise

Los Angeles
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10. Re: The snorkelling how good is it?

wanted to update this-

The water is usually cold but gets warm in August, enough where you could get by with just a thin shorty wetsuit for snorkeling. For more comfort a full wet suit would be needed, especially for skin diving.

Most other times of the year you will need a full suit, booties, gloves and a hood. With water temps down in the high 50's as late as May your wetsuits will need to be thick. We used 6mm when scuba diving and they were fine.

The area around the Casino was one of the first underwater parks in the world, and is a marine reserve, so there are lots of fish, but no hunting.

There are lots of boats going to Avalon from the San Pedro/ Long Beach area, and you could take an early boat over and a late boat back, which would give you all day to explore the island.

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The Avalon Hotel
The Avalon Hotel
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Catalina Island, CA
Long Beach
Long Beach
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