California is an excellent state for sailing. The waters of the Golden State present opportunities for sailors to experience calmer temperatures and beautiful and diverse scenery.
If you want an immersive sailing experience but don’t have much time, you can opt for one of these satisfying day trips.
Long Beach to Catalina Island
From Long Beach marina, you can head to the lovely Catalina Island and enjoy the sites of the Pacific on this typically easy trip. It would help if you headed out at the crack of dawn to maximize the sunlight and enjoy a couple of hours of bliss on this peaceful island.
Catalina Island is entering its off-season, which means it will be less crowded, and the harbor offers deals for moorage. As of Sept. 15th, the Avalon harbor offers a shoulder rate. The boater may pay for four nights and get an additional three nights free. Then as of Oct. 15th, a boater can pay for two nights and get five free.
Sail Around Newport Beach
Newport beach is a great location to get up close and personal with thrilling wildlife such as humpback whales, sea lions, and dolphins on this single-day sailing trip. Now is a better time than ever as the whales migrate to Baja to socialize, mate, and give birth starting around December. Newport Beach is perfect for a beginner sailor, as it is a no-wake and no-discharge harbor. So, it’s always smooth sailing.
You can enjoy moving onshore from an anchor or at a mooring from any public docking spaces at the Newport Beach marina, marked clearly by blue and white pilings. Fine dining and casual establishments are available to serve you if you want to enjoy a meal onshore.
Around Newport Beach, much of the upper part of the bay is kept as an ecological preserve. The area’s space is mainly dedicated to nature and encompasses one of the most sizeable coastal wetlands areas in the state.
The Newport Beach government website has updated details on overnight moorings and anchorages.
For those wishing to get away from the beach scene and travel to the mountains, you can cruise around Lake Tahoe from May to September. So even though you’ll have to wait a bit, the glistening waters are unparalleled.
The lake has specific regulations to keep the experience safe for everyone, so read those before setting off. You’ll also need to undergo an inspection before sailing the lake to avoid bringing in invasive species, so set time aside for that.
Winds can be gusty at Lake Tahoe, so you’ll want to check all forecasts before heading out. It would be best if you visited this lake as an opportunity to cruise rather than race. If you leave early from Sacramento and you can make it to the lake in just over two hours. In addition, boat rentals are also available at the lake if you don’t have a vessel.
Another of California’s unique day sails is from South Beach Harbor on San Francisco Bay to Sausalito. Start your sail by leaving South Beach Harbor next to AT&T Park and explore the open, chilly waters of the Bay Area.
Sail past the San Francisco city front, then past the historic Alcatraz Island, home to an abandoned prison and the oldest operating lighthouse in California. Afterward, stop at the state park, Angel Island, for a meal at the Angel Island Cafe, and listen to live music while you enjoy the beautiful scenery. Finish off the sail to Sausalito with breathtaking views of Mt Tamalpais, where mountain biking was first discovered.
This day sailing trip is perfect for seeing the city of San Francisco from a whole new view.