Washington: Friday Harbor and San Juan Island

In the last post I talked about how chill and quiet life on Orcas Island is. If you want something a little more hip and happening, try San Juan Island. I’m not suggesting it is a booming metropolis or anything, just that there is a little more going on.  Friday Harbor has a few more shops and  restaurants to choose from.  It is right where the ferry comes in so you could just walk onto the ferry and visit for half a day without having to pay to get your vehicle there (which can be expensive, especially during the summer season). It’s also the best island for whale watching…supposedly….We almost felt a little older than our years–antiquing, visiting a used bookshop and a lavender farm–but we enjoyed ourselves.


We were lucky enough to go on a sunny day. I couldn’t get enough of the harbor. It was so beautiful.



Friday Harbor

Friday Harbor 2

Friday Harbor 3

How cute is this used book store? Pretty adorable, I would say.


Serendipity 2

We had lunch at the Hungry Clam. World famous fish and chips? I don’t know about that, but it was a good lunch and, when you have English blood in your veins, it’s kind of a requirement to have fish and chips when you are at the ocean.

Hungry Clam

Hungry Clam 2

Next we headed to Lime Kiln Point State Park. I don’t know what a lime kiln is, but this is supposed to be the best spot on the island for Orca sightings. We looked and looked and looked, but didn’t see anything. Sometimes we THOUGHT we saw something off in the distance and convinced ourselves it was a whale, but most likely it was just a wave crashing. We did see this little fella, though. Don’t worry I wasn’t creeping up on him (at least not TOO close). I used my telephoto for this picture.


Lime Kiln Point

There is a nice hike to the lighthouse if you want to get a closer look or just stretch your legs a tiny bit.

Lime Kiln Hike

San Juan Kayakers

Next we headed to American Camp at the southern end of the island (there is also a British Camp) and hiked down to Grandma’s Cove, a nice secluded beach. You can find the trail head on the south side of the visitor’s parking lot at San Juan Island National Historic Park.

Grandma's Cove

Grandma's Cove 2

There is also a lavender farm on the island with a store where you can buy all things lavender. My favorite were the food items (of course) like lavender hot chocolate and fudge sauce. Rumor has it that if you go on a busy Saturday they sell lavender lemonade.

Lavender Farm

Lavender Farm 2

And don’t forget, no trip to the island is complete without getting ice cream while you are waiting in line for the ferry. There is a place right across the street (to the left).



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