Ocean Shores, Washington
San Juan Archipelago
More than 170 islands comprise the San Juan archipelago, which lies off mainland Washington at the juncture of the straits of Georgia and Juan de Fuca, and is sheltered from the Pacific Ocean by the Olympic Peninsula and Vancouver Island . (There are reputedly an additional 300 rocky "islands" at low tide.) The San Juan Islands were once part of a mountain range connecting Washington State to Vancouver Island . Eighty-three islands are protected as part of the San Juan Wildlife Refuge, home to seabirds, seals and sea lions. About 90 Orca whales are year round residents of the area.
The four islands served by the Washington State Ferry System - Lopez , Orcas , San Juan , and Shaw - are the usual destinations for, weekend getaways and extended stay vacations for relaxation and such activities as whale watching , kayaking, bicycling and gentle sightseeing. To reach any of the other islands, about 40 of which are inhabited, you will need to arrange your own transportation.
On the main islands, the farming and fishing communities have been joined by "urban refugees" including many artists, perhaps drawn by the natural beauty and solitude of these islands. During the summer months, the main islands receive as many visitors as they can accommodate, so be sure to book your stay in advance.
Various information sources such as local newspapers, convention and tourism bureaus and web guides providing additional information about the San Juan Islands.
How to reach the San Juan Islands and how to get around amongst them when you are there.
What you can expect to find in the way of bed and breakfasts; cabins; hotels, motels, inns, lodges and resorts; campgrounds; and RV Parks.
Ideas and resources for things to do including bicycling, birding, cruises, hiking, kayaking, tours and whale watching,
Special places of interests like scenic views; state parks; historical sites; unique farms and gardens; plus where to go to enjoy art galleries, museums and the performing arts.