For an adventurous ocean tour, head out with Catalina Ocean Rafting (103 Pebbly Beach Rd., 800/990-7238, www.catalinaoceanrafting.com , $41). From the Avalon harbor, you’ll head out on a two-hour, half-day, or full-day trip on a small, powered, inflatable raft. The small maneuverable craft can take you right up to cliffs and into sea caves, around Eagle Rock and Ribbon Rock, and into reef areas perfect for snorkeling (equipment is provided with your tour).
You’ll get to harbors beyond Avalon, and enjoy lunch, drinks, and snacks as part of your trip. A raft tour is a great way for adventurous newcomers to get the lay of the land and sea before striking off on their own.