Lindblad Expeditions and National Geographic are now offering "Basecamp Channel Islands," a wilderness and wellness adventure in partnership with international spa and wellbeing company Exhale Spa. This experience explores the seldom seen Channel Islands National Park. Part safari, part adult camp, the five-day expedition voyage on 62-passenger National Geographic Sea Lion will explore the alluring remoteness that has motivated people to protect these landscapes and surrounding ocean.
This Lindblad active adventure is designed to blend the best of exploration, transformation and restoration among the acres of hiking trails. Within the Channel Islands, passengers also have the chance to explore sea caves by kayak or paddleboard, as well as enter undersea realms and observe impressively scenic landscapes and bird colonies.
Naturalists have dubbed the Channel Islands the Galapagos of North America.
Miles of ocean separate this unique destination from the Southern California mainland, and half of the park sits underwater. So being able to get there effortlessly, to move freely around the Islands leisurely and in genuine comfort -- and to explore the land and undersea -- is what makes this Channel Islands expedition cruise a one-of-a-kind journey. Of the 2,000 species of plants and animals within the vast national park, 145 exist nowhere else in the world. Marine life ranges from microscopic plankton to the blue whale.
Basecamp Channel Islands voyage on the National Geographic Sea Lion expedition ship departs from the Port of Los Angeles and explores East Anacapa Island, home to Anacapa Lighthouse, the last major light station to be built on the west coast in 1912.
You'll explore Santa Cruz, the largest island in California, with more than 600 plant species, 140 birds, including large colonies of nesting seabirds, and 11 land mammal species, including pinnipeds -- and more than 60 endemic species. Also on the itinerary is Rosa Island with Torrey Pines, considered one of the world's rarest pines, and one of only two naturally occurring groves in the world; and San Miguel Island with over 30,000 pinnipeds and up to five species. On Santa Catalina Island, look for the elusive Santa Cruz Island Fox or the resident bison. You'll have the afternoon free to grab a bike and explore downtown Avalon, the island's only incorporated city.
Programming for the Lindblad Expeditions National Geographic Basecamp Channel Islands adventure includes transformative wellbeing experiences that Exhale Spa is famous for. You can indulge in healthy activities led by an expert fitness instructor, spa therapist or a Lindblad wellness specialist. Choose among sessions like Barre + Cardio, Beach Boot Camp and Power Yoga classes on deck, as well as stand-up paddleboard yoga, transformational mindfulness hikes and assisted stretching. Neck and shoulder massages will be offered prior to evening cocktails, and Chill Yoga classes offered in the evening, alongside group guided meditation.
There are many trails covering the islands offering the opportunity for leisurely walking, birding or working with your certified photo instructor to capture the natural beauty, or for a strenuous hike for a real workout. Grab a kayak to explore the shoreline, or you can participate in talks, wildlife sightings, drawing and painting, mindful silences, star-gazing and tide-pooling.
Passengers also will be happy to find healthy snacks, juices and menu options. Lindblad Expedition's touts its longstanding commitment to sustainably caught seafood and locally sourced produce.
Rates begin at $2,490 per person based on double occupancy for the voyages that depart October 17 and October 24, 2018.
Sounds like an invigorating way to explore a special outdoors gem in the United States.
Thanks for reading,