Stumble upon the beauty of the San Juan Islands but wonder what things to do on Orcas Island?
I was lucky to travel to this San Juan Island last year for the wedding of one of my best friends. She and her husband had been to the island before and realized it was the perfect destination within Washington state for a Covid wedding. They weren’t wrong!
Despite being a beautiful Island, it’s not as well known as you would think for those who live outside of the Pacific Northwest. I highly recommend it being at the top of your Pacific Northwest list though whether Mountain Lake is on your list or you want to go whale watching. The San Juans truly don’t disappoint. Neither do the ferry ride or seaplane getting there!
Ready to see the things to do on Orcas Island?
Wander Around Eastsound Village
I stayed at Outlook Inn which is centrally located in Eastsound, the main town on Orcas Island. While the town is small, I recommend wandering around and taking the time to stop in the local shops. There are some cute shops that go beyond the typical tourist souvenirs. The best part is that it’s along the water so you’ll get a view of the town and a scenic view as well.
Climb Mount Constitution
There’s no point in planning an Orcas Island getaway if you’re not going to check out the Mount Constitution view. This is where my friends had their ceremony. If you don’t want to go hiking through the park (like us dressed in wedding attire), you can drive a solid amount of the way up.
If you do prefer the trail you can start your hike at Cold Springs, Mountain Lake, or the West Boundary.
Enjoy a Picnic in Moran State Park
A random observation I had at the park was how nice the picnic areas were. These picnic areas were so nice that they even had glass windows on them. Everyone at the wedding was from Texas and we all spent a solid 10 minutes talking about how in awe we were. If you have a large group that needs this coverage, you’ll want to make a reservation. However, there are plenty of places with waterfront lake views where you can throw down a blanket on the beach and enjoy some wine from Doe Bay Wine Company or Orcas Island Winery.
More things to do on Orcas Island:
– Obstruction Pass State Park
– Cascade Lake
– Whale Watching Tours
– Shop Orcas Island Pottery & Orcas Island Artworks
– Orcas Island Golf
– Turtleback Mountain Preserve
Want to head over to the East Coast and visit Washington DC instead? Check out my post on what to wear in Washington DC.
June is the perfect time to go. It barely rained while I was there and was in the 60s & 70s. Perfect summer sweater weather!
The fastest way is by seaplane from Seattle. That’s how I got there. However, it can be risky because you don’t actually know if the weather is ok enough for it to take off until a few hours to a few minutes before. My seaplane for the way back got canceled so I ended up taking the very back to Seattle.
If you’re going with a group, I recommend an Air BnB. The houses have stunning views that you’ll love waking up to. If it’s just you, you can’t go wrong with the Outlook Inn!
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