rates & availability

5 Reasons why I’m in Love with San Juan Island

I consider San Juan Island my home away from home. When I board the ferry to Friday Harbor, all my worries melt away. As soon as the boat rounds the corner into the port of town, time slows down and I realize I have a huge smile on my face.

1)    Because once in a lifetime experiences are the norm
I was sitting under a Madrona tree by the light house at Lime Kiln State Park. The sun was about to go down and the view was breathtaking, when I suddenly heard a sound, like a truck approaching. Puzzled I looked around. The road is far from where I was and there aren’t many trucks driving around San Juan Island. Then I realized what I was hearing was whales breaching and blowing water out of their blowholes. Then I saw them, at least fifteen of them. Orcas so close to the shore that I could see their eyes. This is normal on San Juan Island.

2)    Because everybody is so friendly
I was standing in line for coffee at the Bean Café by the ferry. The women in front of me commented on my earrings I had just bought at Island Studios from a local artist. It turned out she lives here and knows the artist. She ordered her things and left. When I wanted to pay for my double mocha with whipped cream, the guy behind the counter told me that the women had taken care of my drink. This is normal on San Juan Island.

3)    Because there are no traffic lights
Driving is not something I do for fun. It’s a necessity and I’m glad when it’s over with.  Not so on the island. I like to drive along Cattle Point Road towards the historic lighthouse, with the Salish Sea to both my left and my right and majestic Mt. Baker in the background, this is where I experienced Fahrvergnügen, the joy of driving, for the first time in my life. This is normal on San Juan island.

4)    Because you really get away from it all (even in the summer)
The South Beach parking lot can be  very full on a July weekend. Families have bon fires and picnics. Dog owner walk their puppies. Kids play in the tide pools. It is a delightful and festive, friendly atmosphere. I still long for some alone time though and so I park my car and walk north through the prairie grass along the cliffs. Within minutes I am by myself, out of sight and earshot of any other humans. A Bald Eagle flying above me, checking me out, then leisurely perching on a rock about 30 feet from me. This is normal on San Juan Island.

5)    Because it never gets boring
Every time I’m visiting there are new attractions to explore, new museum exhibits, new art in the many galleries in downtown Friday Harbor. There are hikes in the vast Roche Harbor trail system I haven’t done yet, restaurants I haven’t checked out, newly acquired wildlife preserves I haven’t seen. And the things I have seen, I want to see all over again, in a different season, in a different light, at a different time in my personal life.

I’m so in love with San Juan Island and I know you will be too.


"What a delightful place to stay!...

The staff is wonderful and the little extras

make it a comfortable place to stay."