On Friday we headed out for a little weekend trip to Santa Catalina Island to celebrate one of our good friends turning the big 3-0. B and I had to work Friday so we got a pretty late start and didn’t end up making it down to Venice until after midnight but the drive was well worth it!
We stayed in the cutest Airbnb on Friday night. It had a great rooftop terrace that overlooked the canals and was so conveniently located. I wish we had gotten down earlier so we had more time to spend in Venice but such is life. We headed to bed not long after our arrival so we were well rested for Saturday’s adventure.
We got an early start on Saturday and our first stop was M Street Kitchen in Santa Monica for brunch. They had a wide spread of food and drinks to choose from and the atmosphere was so nice and laid back. We started off with mimosas (always a must if you know me) and I had the spicy egg sandwich. Their bacon was to die for! Definitely order a side if you find yourself there for breakfast/brunch. Overall I’d give M Street Kitchen 4 stars.
Once we finished brunch we headed to Los Angles Harbor to catch our boat to Avalon. As someone who has been known to get motion sick I was a little nervous for the boat ride but was pleasantly surprised at what a smooth ride we had. The hour long boat ride was beautiful and the weather was perfect! Once we docked in Avalon we checked into our second rental house for the weekend and then headed out to explore the island.
We spent some time walking around and then we headed to the Lobster Trap for lunch. It was recommended to us by multiple locals so we knew we had to try it out. It had such a no frills, island atmosphere and we loved it. The menu was phenomenal and the seafood was so fresh. I ordered the Catalina local lobster because it was in season and it did not disappoint. The bay shrimp stuffing that came with the lobster was to die for. I seriously could have eaten the stuffing as my meal. Others ordered the fresh catches of the day and they were also delicious. The service at Lobster Trap was a little slow but the waitstaff was very friendly. If you’ve been to many islands slow service seems to be a relatively common theme. Regardless, I’d still give Lobster Trap 5 stars and head back in a heartbeat. It was definitely my favorite meal of the trip.
After lunch we decided to rent a golf cart and tour the island. We probably should have saved our money and skipped this. There aren’t many cars on the island so golf carts are how most everyone gets around. The personally owned golf carts seem to be much nicer and move a lot faster. I swear we couldn’t get this rental to go over 10 miles an hour. The plus was that the ride did allow for some great views of the island and a good photo op or two.
We had a quick drink once the tour was over at then headed back to the house to freshen up for our private sunset sail on a 42′ trimaran. THIS.WAS.THE.BEST.TIME. There are group tours available on the island but I promise the private tour is the way to go. Captain Rob was so friendly and so knowledgable about sailing and the island. One of the local fisherman (who is supposedly a retired Hollywood A-lister) pulled up to the boat and handed Rob a fish. He literally filleted the fish on the spot and we snacked on fresh bonito fish while we sailed around and sipped a variety of white wine that we brought with us. The sail ended with perfect views of the most gorgeous sunset I think I have ever seen. It was such a great experience made even better by getting to share it with great friends. B and I can’t wait to head back and spend a full day with Captain Rob fishing, paddle boarding, and touring more of the island.
At the recommendation of Captain Rob we headed to Bluewater Grill for dinner. I didn’t realize this was a chain at the time. We usually try to eat at all locally owned restaurants when we visit new places but I can’t deny the views were great. They had plenty of meat, seafood, and pasta dishes on the menu. I ordered the prawn linguini and it was just okay. I’ve gotten pretty spoiled with homemade pasta lately so I think that had something to do with not being overly impressed. B ordered the paella and loved it. That was a big step for him because there was no cheese! We rounded out dinner with a happy birthday serenade and headed out for a night on the town! I would give Bluewater Grill 4 stars based on views and service.
Sunday morning we stopped for coffee and headed to the dock to catch our boat back to Los Angles. Once we docked the rest of the group headed back to NorCal and Brandon and I met my sister in WeHo for brunch. We tried a place called Basix and honestly we were not impressed. The blood orange mimosa was awesome but everything else left something to be desired. We spent a few hours chatting and catching up before stopping for a caffeine refill and making our way back to the Bay Area.
It was a quick trip but we had the best time. Before visiting Catalina I had this misconception that it would an uppity island off of Los Angles but I am so happy to admit that I was wrong. The locals, food, and views are all fantastic. We are already planning a second trip back. We want to try out Hamilton Cove for the next go round. Stay tuned to see how that trip goes!