Just off the coast of Southern California lie the Channel Islands. The largest is Santa Cruz Island. My husband and I had been here once before, and explored some of the island and it's gorgeous overlooks. This time we went to spend a half-day exploring the sea caves on kayaks with Channel Islands Adventure Company. We took the Island Packers Ferry from Ventura for one hour out to the island. We were able to spot a Blue Whale along the way and watch it dive down into the ocean! They are the largest animal to ever exist on our planet, this is including dinosaurs. It was a very special experience, and the Packers skippers are pros at spotting them.
We arrived at Scorpion Harbor, a rocky beach that is a world-class destination for diving, snorkeling, and kayaking because of easy beach access, clear ocean waters, nearby camping, and extensive kelp forests. The trip we took was a 3-hour kayak with a guide to explore quite a few sea caves around there island. The trip is a nice blend of relaxation paddling across the ocean, stopping to rest and hear more about the island and the extensive wildlife, and of course, going through some really cool sea caves. We saw nesting birds and playful sea lions as we glided along the sea. Being out in the open ocean feels far, far away from the distractions of city life. A sanctuary away from traffic and laptops.
Note: There aren't any restaurants or hotels on the island so you have to pack in food for the day or weekend. Channel Islands Provisioners provides meal options that you pick up right at the ferry and are packed with delicious meals for the day. My meal included a hearty breakfast sandwich, nut/berry/ginger chew snack mix, a delicious beef brisket sandwich, and fluffy homemade cookies that were to drool for. Highly recommend!
Just make sure the native Island Fox doesn't steal your food, they're sneaky little guys! ;)