Scuba Dive California’s Channel Islands Kelp Forest

Known to be a diver’s playground, Channel Islands National Park offers a unique and memorable scuba diving experience with ample marine life, giant kelp forests, sea lions, and more. Diving along the Southern California coast and the Channel Islands should be on every diver’s bucket list when visiting Ventura County Coast!

📷: @divindk

What Is A Kelp Forest?

Kelp is a type of seaweed or marine algae that attaches holdfasts (root-like structures) to anchor itself to the rocky seafloor and grows toward the water’s surface. Some species can reach heights underwater of 150 feet and can even grow up to 18 inches per day!

There are more than 1,000 species of marine plants and animals that call the kelp forests their home. Not only does the thick kelp canopy act as a shelter from predators, it also protects creatures during storms because the kelp helps weaken currents and waves. While kelp can live up to seven years, the weather plays an important factor since strong winter storms can easily uproot it and wash it ashore.

For many scuba divers and underwater photographers, these kelp forests are known as favorite destinations that offer opportunities to observe the unique collection of marine life found only at the Channel Islands.

First-Time Diving Information:

Is Scuba Diving Safe?

Like any adventure sport, there is some risk involved. However, as long as a diver goes through thorough training, follows safe diving guidelines, uses proper gear, and dives within their experience level, it is relatively safe.

Do I need to be certified to dive in California?

No. Ventura Dive & Sport offers the PADI Discover Scuba Diving Program, which includes training in a heated pool and practice dives to a maximum depth of 40 feet. Ventura Dive provides training for all levels, from beginners to instructors.

How can I become a certified diver?

You can take the PADI Open Water Diver Course through Ventura Dive & Sport, which consists of knowledge development sessions and the required number of dives, materials, and equipment. The course is flexible and performance based. It’s possible to complete your confined and open-water dives in as few as three or four days if you read the manual and watch the training video ahead of time.

Do I need to purchase my own equipment or can I rent it?

Most places will have equipment available to rent. We recommend checking their website or calling to confirm.

What is the minimum age requirement to take diving lessons from a PADI instructor?

10 years old.

Do I need to be an athlete to go diving?

No. As long as you are healthy and can perform moderate exercise, diving is well within your reach.

What equipment do I need?

Mask, snorkel, fins, wetsuit, BCD (Buoyancy Compensator Device), regulator, aluminum tank, weights, and gloves.

How much does it cost to rent equipment?

It varies by place, but you can usually find a scuba package rate for $45 to $80.

Start planning out your scuba diving trip now and get ready to explore the beautiful Channel Islands Kelp Forest. Peace Dive Boat, Channel Islands Dive Adventures, Ventura Dive & Sport and The Spectre Dive Boat offer everything you need for your diving adventure!

REMARKABLE EXPERIENCES

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Visit these regions of Ventura County Coast

Camarillo
Oxnard
Ventura
Port Hueneme
Channel Islands National Park

Regions

Ventura County Coast

Ventura County Coast is a string of four communities that radiate warmth from welcoming people and California sunshine. The region embodies the casual and active spirit of classic, where the seafood is fresh, the beer is handcrafted and the weather is the kind you dream about. Spend the day exploring miles of beaches, incredible harbors or lush green golf courses. Hop on a boat for a day trip to the Channel Islands National Park, where you can see breathtaking views of the Southern California coastline. With a bustling culture, high end and vintage shopping, a lively culinary spirit and beautiful outdoor experiences, Ventura County Coast calls on every visitor to find their vibe. From hiking and biking to sailing and snorkeling, from shopping and dining to just plain relaxing, Ventura County Coast will fill your days with a lifetime of memories.

Camarillo

Camarillo

An hour north of Los Angeles, Camarillo is nestled at the base of the Conejo foothills surrounded by verdant green fields and cool ocean breezes. With more than 300 days of sunshine a year, enjoy Camarillo alfresco. From outdoor shopping and concerts, to delicious dining and fun events, Camarillo has it all. With small town charm and a rich history, it is the place for romantic weddings and corporate venues. Visit the historical sites and museums during the day, and walk along Old Town for dinner and drinks at night. A great getaway for everyone, Camarillo is the ideal place to Come for the Sun, Stay for the Fun.

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Oxnard

Oxnard

Rally your tribe and head for the Central Coast. California cool, panorama-perfect, culturally authentic and vibrant beyond measure. Oxnard is home to miles of pristine white sand beaches, electric nightlife, some of the best taquerias in the state, historic Victorian era architecture, the California Strawberry Festival, and an expansively picturesque harbor that serves as the closest access point to the Channel Islands National Park. Just sixty miles northwest of LAX and in close proximity to Santa Barbara and other major destinations, Oxnard is one of California’s best kept secrets.

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Ventura

Ventura

A place that embodies a casual soul and unexpected allure, Ventura is a vibrant town that checks stress and pretense at the door.  Its artistic culture, enduring history and privileged locale is crazy-inviting, very much alive, and refreshingly human.

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Port Hueneme

Port Hueneme

Just sixty miles northwest of Los Angeles, in the heart of the Central Coast, you’ll find Port Hueneme, the friendly city by the sea. Port Hueneme is the place for travelers looking to dig their toes in the sand, take a long walk, drop a fishing line off the pier or just kick back and relax. With walking and biking trails winding throughout the city and a perfect climate almost year round, you can revive your soul in Hueneme.

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Channel Islands National Park

Channel Islands National Park

Channel Islands National Park is an American national park that consists of five of the eight Channel Islands off the coast of the U.S. state of California, in the Pacific Ocean.

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