Even on a smogless day, those mounds in the distance may seem lonely, but this Channel Island is a social butterfly waiting for you to discover her beauty. And sure, you can hop in a helicopter or charter a jet (it has a mini-airport!), but your best transport bet is via the Catalina Express. With departures out of three L.A. ports, and multiple takeoff times, you can easily embark even on a Friday after work. And, in about an hour-and-a-half (roughly 26 miles), you'll feel like an ancient explorer sighting land! Up top, there's a first-class cabin, but we say why not get a little Pacific-misted on deck and wave your L.A. woes adios, sans windows? The best part about this watercraft, though, is its selection of booze (unless you're already fully loaded with Dramamine, of course). Smooth sailing, either way!
Catalina Express, 95 Berth (near Seaside Freeway); 310-519-7971.
Photo: Courtesy of Catalina Express