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“One of the best days ever!”

Channel Islands Aviation
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Attraction details
Owner description: Flights to the Channel Islands National Park, Santa Rosa Island, for day trips, surf fishing safaris and overnight camping.
Santa Barbara, California
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“One of the best days ever!”
Reviewed 4 August 2014

My husband spent his childhood going to the Channel Islands on a family boat, so he was not that interested in trying to relive it by going out again on a tourist boat. However, when I found out about Channel Islands Aviation and their day trips, he was all for it.

After our skilled pilot (my husband's a pilot too and was impressed with Jonathan's skill) flew us on a short, but lovely appx. 25 minute flight we landed on Santa Rosa Island. We expected a long hike to try and see Torrey Pines, but after lunch Jonathan shuttled (via an Excursion) to the trailhead, which made the rest of the steep hike very doable. Jonathan even hiked with us and shared a bit of natural and cultural history of the island.

The weather was amazing and we are planning on returning soon for a three day camping trip.

Visited August 2014
2 Thank LiveLoveFly G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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11 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
Agoura Hills, California
Level 6 Contributor
783 reviews
233 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 303 helpful votes
“Wow, what a great day trip - flying to Santa Rosa Island”
Reviewed 19 July 2014

This trip really exceeded our expectations. The flight was great - only 24 minutes from Camarillo to Santa Rosa. The weather was pretty good so we could see Anacapa and Santa Cruz on our way to Santa Rosa. Jonathan our pilot provided lots of info on the island on our flight to and from the island. The landing on Santa Rosa's dirt landing field was very smooth. The plane with 10 seats (including pilot) is a bit cramped but for this short flight it isn't a problem. Most seats have good visibility.

When we landed on Santa Rosa, the island doesn't look that impressive but give it a few minutes and while walking around or in the 4 wheel drive tour it becomes very amazing.

Tom our guide on the island (he flew over the other 10 on the trip) was a biology professor so he knows his stuff and is very friendly and outgoing.

We walked to the ranch (about 1/2 mile walk) and then went to pier (some walked/some rode in SUV). The pier and beach area is beautiful. The sandstone cliffs are fantastic.

We then drove to Black Rock, Torrey Pines and beach to see the Pigmy Mammoth Tusk.

We left about 11am and were back at 4:30pm. For us, it was the perfect amount of time.

This trip was incredible. I can't wait to go back in February when the giant coreopsis are blooming.

I highly recommend this trip and CIA is a very professional and customer oriented company.

Visited July 2014
2 Thank Craig-World-Travelle
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Charlotte, North Carolina
Level 6 Contributor
237 reviews
70 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 129 helpful votes
“FANTASTIC day!!!”
Reviewed 26 June 2014

We booked the Deluxe Day Trip - so we had 4.5 hours on the Santa Rosa. The flight was fun - every seat was a great one. We landed on a dirt strip and we had never had that experience. Our pilot, Jonathan, was excellent. We had a choice of venturing on our own or taking a tour by truck and doing some hiking. We chose the tour and hike. We drove to the old buildings used by ranchers and learned the history of the island and how it became a park. Then we visited the pier where the ferry lands. The plane trip is so much shorter that we barely saw any ferry travelers. Then we went to the old homestead and ate lunch. Then Jonathan dropped us off at a great trailhead and we hiked through a canyon and to the top of the island (winds almost strong enough to knock you over) and and back to ground level. It was a great hike. Then he drove us through a crazy canyon (think roller coaster in a pickup truck) to a beautiful beach. We skipped the last hike and were driven back to the plane. Our guide was very helpful and professional. If you take this tour - bring anything you might need. There is no store available - but there is a bathroom. This was one of the best days on our vacation. I recommend this as a great way to see Santa Rosa.

Visited May 2014
3 Thank SueMC_56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sunnyvale, CA
Level 6 Contributor
208 reviews
51 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 178 helpful votes
“The best way to visit the Channel Islands”
Reviewed 6 May 2014

Channel Islands is one of the most beautiful parks you will ever visit. The inaccessibility keeps them from the crowds, so once you visit, you pretty much have the island to yourself!

We chose CIA's deluxe day trip to visit the islands. The trip was originally planned for October, but with the government shut down closing down the parks, it had to be rescheduled. We were extremely impressed with CIA with both keeping us up-to-date on the daily status of the park closure, and ultimately being flexible with the rescheduling of our trip.

The flight itself, though in a teensy plane, was short and very comfortable. Our pilot did a great job at being both a pilot and a tour guide.

Visited April 2014
Thank DanAndAssana
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 3 Contributor
15 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Santa Rosa Island great trip”
Reviewed 30 July 2013

This year a friend of mine and I got to take the flight from Camarillo to Santa Rosa Island. Our pilot and tour guide was very knowlegeable and everyone on the trip enjoyed their time on the island as well as the flight. I want to go again soon.

Visited September 2012
1 Thank CamarilloSteve
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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