New Catalina Land and Sea Adventure

A new package gives visitors the best of the island's two worlds.

ADVENTURE IS NEAR: The classic land & sea adventure tour? It totally sounds like something you need to take four commercial flights and three charter planes to get to (we're picturing a far-off island or a setting from an "Indiana Jones" flick). But an outing that covers both water and earth is much closer to us than that, and looks just as thrilling. Bonus? Buffalo. Oookay, we just gave it away: We're talking about Catalina Island. Catalina Expeditions just introduced a new Land & Sea Tour over the Memorial Day Weekend and it is a wowzie. Yes, we said "wowzie," but wait for it.

LET'S START IN A BOAT: You begin in Avalon in a "rigid-hulled inflatable boat" -- we're not sure we've ever said all of those words together, but we will certainly start -- and you make for Catalina Harbor. Then there's lunch in Two Harbors and a trip back to Avalon in a bio-fuel H1 Hummer (oh, it is a convertible, so you'll be taking in a lot of the sights, including, we hope, the island's famous buffalo-y denizens). The company says that "two-thirds" of the islands much-photographed coastline can be seen during the tour. Yep, it is a big day out, with salt spray and Hummer riding, but you want that when you're signing up for an adventure, right?

THE DETAILS: It's $160 and takes five-and-a-half hours, so you'll want to plan your whole day around it, basically. Do it while the weather is fine, since it wraps up every year in October. Oh, and if you are wondering about the flying fish? They're nighttimers, so you won't see 'em, but note that the Flying Fish Festival is ready to flap its fins.

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