Channel Islands National Park
1901 Spinnaker Drive
Ventura, CA 93001
WELCOME to the Channel
Close to the California mainland, yet worlds
apart, Channel Islands National Park encompasses five remarkable
islands (Anacapa, Santa Cruz, Santa Rosa, San Miguel, and Santa
Barbara) and their ocean environment, preserving and protecting a
wealth of natural and cultural resources.
Isolation over thousands of years has created
unique animals, plants, and archeological resources found nowhere
else on Earth and helped preserve a place where visitors can
experience coastal southern California as it once was.
In order to save a variety of species,
including the island fox, from the brink of extinction as well as
protect internationally significant archeological sites, the
National Park Service (NPS) has embarked upon restoration programs
to restore park islands.
These restoration programs are part of the NPS
mission, as mandated by Congress, to preserve unimpaired the natural
and cultural resources and values of the national park system for
the enjoyment, education, and inspiration of this and future
The Channel Islands support the two primary
breeding colonies of California Brown Pelicans on the west coast of
the United States with rookeries on Anacapa and Santa Barbara
Channel Islands National Park provides a
delightful break from the congestion and clamor of urban life. The
islands are ideal for quiet, uninterrupted time with family and
friends�wonderful places to hike, camp, snorkel, kayak, birdwatch,
take photographs, sketch, or just relax to the soothing sounds of
the natural world.
Surfacing over the horizon from the depths of
the Pacific Ocean, the coastal mountains of California's Channel
Islands offer an extraordinary gateway to the past, spanning more
than 12,000 years of human history.
The Channel Islands have attracted many
explorers, scientists and historians during the past few centuries.
Today, island visitors can explore the world of the native Chumash,
walk the shores where European explorers landed, discover new tales
from California�s ranching history, and witness the remains of
The northern Channel Islands were home to many
native Chumash communities who are believed to have inhabited the
islands for thousands of years. When Europeans first reached the
islands in the 16th century, they discovered a rich culture
dependent upon the resources of the land and the sea for sustenance
By the nineteenth century, the islands were fulfilling
different purposes: vast sheep and cattle ranches occupied Santa
Cruz, Santa Rosa, and San Miguel islands and the channel waters were
aggressively harvested for fish and marine mammals. The remains of
ancient Chumash villages are intermingled with historic ranch
complexes and later military structures, testifying to the diverse
heritage of human experience on these offshore islands.
Each of the five Channel Islands has a unique
history. Channel Islands National Park invites you to learn more
about the people, places, and stories associated with each of these
islands and to experience the fascinating heritage of coastal
There are no services on the islands. Visitors
must bring all their own food and water (potable water is available
in the Scorpion Ranch campground on Santa Cruz Island and the Water
Canyon campground on Santa Rosa Island).
A limited amount of food and drink is
available on the concessionaire boats.
Did You Know?
The Channel Islands are home to the oldest dated human remains in
North America - Arlington Springs Woman (13,000 BP).
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