Written by Missy Johnston
San Juan Islands, Washington State
Washington State’s northwest coast is most famous for its proximity to Vancouver Island, Canada. But you don’t need to leave American waters to immerse yourself in the wild, untamed beauty that the ocean in this area of Washington offers. The San Juan Islands, composed of nearly 400 islands, is the perfect location to enjoy a round-trip experience out of Bellingham, Washington on a luxury private yacht charter. Here are some reasons why.
There’s always wildlife nearby!
The Pacific Northwest’s chilly waters teem with killer whales. Few other places in the world offer the same opportunity to see huge groups of playful orcas cavorting without a care in the world. In fact, the Southern Resident Killer Whales are a pod made up of 74 orcas that live and play in the San Juan Islands.
Harbor seals, bald eagles, and porpoises also call this area home, so you’ll be able to see beautiful and fascinating marine, wild, and bird life in their natural habitats.
Civilization is here, too.
The San Juan Archipelago has three main islands: San Juan Island, Lopez Island, and Orcas Island. San Juan Island offers a variety of fresh seafood markets and restaurants. Picturesque Friday Harbor, which features Lime Kiln Point State Park, is a favorite walking destination. The island is also home to local art galleries and museums. The Historic Museum and The Whale Museum are popular museums.
Friday Harbor, San Juan Islands, Washington State
Foodies might enjoy the San Juan Food and Farms Tour, which is a self-guided tour of San Juan Island farms, tasting rooms and restaurants. Whatever the interest, the San Juan Islands have something for everyone.
Fun activities abound.
Orcas Island Lighthouse
Adventurers and enthusiasts can participate in many types of activities in the San Juan Islands, including:
- Kayaking through orca pods
- Biking (Lopez Island has the flattest terrain)
- Riding in a seaplane
- Visiting alpacas
- Ziplining over forests and wetlands
- Tasting locally made wines and spirits
- Hiking mountain peaks
- Visiting Lopez Island’s farmer’s market
Back aboard your yacht at the end of the day is the perfect time to enjoy a cocktail and watch the sun as it sets below the horizon. What could be better than that?