Island Wildlife Cruises-dual

Photo by Dee Reed

Island Packers offers two options for wildlife cruises. In addition to  our half day (3.5 hours) wildlife cruise, we now offer a three-quarter day (5 hours) wildlife cruise.  Below you will find a comparison of these two trips.  Both trips offer a shoreline cruise of one of the Channel Islands and a chance to view the abundance of wildlife found in the Santa Barbara Channel.


Both cruises will take you through the waters of the Santa Barbara Channel, Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary and the Channel Islands National Park.


The Yellow shading shows the general direction and probable exploration area of the Three- Quarter Day Trip from the Ventura Harbor

The Red shading shows the general direction and probable exploration area of the Half Day Trip from the Ventura Harbor or Oxnard Harbor.

As with all our trips, Island Packers attempts to provide a safe and comfortable ride.

Weather and sea conditions may prevent these and any trips from the proposed course for comfort and safety.

Half Day Trips | 3.5 hours Approximately


1/2 Day Island Wildlife Cruise Schedule

View Our Schedule by month by clicking the buttons below.

This trip cruises the rugged shoreline and surrounding waters of Anacapa Island. Passengers on this trip will see the famous Arch Rock that is the landmark for the Park as well as the seals and sea lions that make their home on the shore beneath the high cliffs.  Visitors can also view the working lighthouse atop the island.

Photo by Dan Harding - Brown Pelicans in flight

Traveling from the mainland to the island of Anacapa, passengers often see Harbor Seals, California Sea Lions and Common dolphin. Humpback, Gray, Blue and Orca Whales, as well as Pacific White-sided & and Risso's Dolphin may also be sighted on these excursions.  We never know what we will see, but these excursions are always an adventure.

Anacapa Island is home to one of the largest breeding populations of Brown Pelicans on the west coast.  Western Gulls breed on all three islets of Anacapa, forming the largest breeding colony of Western Gulls in the world.  Birds abound in the water, on the land and in the skies around Anacapa Island.


Photo by Michele Wassell - Humpback Whale tail fluke
Photo by Doug Mangum

 Three-Quarter Day Trips | 5 Hours Approximately


The Three-Quarter Day Wildlife Viewing excursion uses the extra time to travel where wildlife has been spotted recently and may go anywhere that time and sea conditions allow.

Photo by  Lotti Keenan

This trip typically cruises the rugged shoreline and surrounding waters of Western Santa Cruz Island. Passengers on this trip will view Painted Cave, one of the world’s largest sea caves.

Western Santa Cruz Island Arches
western-sci beautiful-bay

Passengers booking this trip should be prepared for a long day at sea with warm, layered clothing, and low-soled, good-grip shoes. Although there is a galley onboard that sells snacks and drinks, passengers will want to bring a lunch for their time on the boat.

Photo by Joel Barrett