Channel Islands Harbor celebrates the migration of the Pacific Gray Whale with its Annual Celebration of the Whales. Each winter, these enchanting whales migrate through the Santa Barbara Channel on their way to the lagoons of Mexico, where the females will give birth. Whale watching excursions to the Channel Islands National Park are offered daily from Channel Islands Harbor and provide sightseers the best opportunities for viewing the whales, which are up to 50 feet long and weigh approximately 36 tons, as they travel south. Excursions began Dec. 26 and run through mid-April 2017.
Businesses at Channel Islands Harbor offering these sight-seeing excursions include Channel Islands Sportfishing, which provides excursions from January through April, (805) 382-1612; and Island Packers, which offers half-day trips through mid-April (805) 642-1393. For more information, visit www.channelislandsharbor.org.
As the first recreational harbor in Ventura County, Channel Islands Harbor has become one of the largest in California. It now includes over 300 acres of land and water, but the initial development included only a small portion of the current harbor area. Additional construction took place over the years, including the west channel of the harbor, along Harbor Boulevard and Peninsula Road. Development of the harbor has been largely accomplished through leases with private developers, who have constructed eight marinas (not including the three constructed by the County) comprising over 2200 boat slips, two hotels, two yacht club buildings, two boat yards, three shopping areas, restaurants, a Maritime Museum, over 100 condominiums and 485 apartments. In addition, public agencies have provided parks, restrooms, the public launch ramp and parking for the public. For more information on Channel Islands Harbor visit www.channelislandsharbor.org.