Memorial Day Travel Tips

Thinking of visiting San Juan Island for Memorial Day Weekend?  Well let me provide you with some travel tips so you can plan smooth travel to the islands.

Lets start by the best ways to get to San Juan Island.

If you are leaving from the Seattle area you can choose from two different flight services that will fly direct to San Juan.

  1. Westwind Aviation: You can charter flights from Seattle and other surrounding towns and fly directly to San Juan.  Please visit their site for details.
  2. Kenmore Air: This is a popular service out of Seattle.  You can choose to fly via the land based flights or book a seat on a sea plane.  Both flight arrive in Friday Harbor Wa,  San Juan Island.

Options by boat.

  1. Washington State Ferries: You will have to travel via car or bus to Anacortes Washington.  Here you can catch the Ferry to San Juan Island.  The ferry ride is a beautiful introduction to the San Juan’s.  Please read the section below about ferry logistics.
  2. Victoria Clipper: This is another boat option that you can take from Seattle.  The travel time can be a bit longer, but if you are a fan of sea travel, it is a wonderful time.

What you need to know about traveling on Washington State Ferries.  This is the most common way people arrive on San Juan Island.  Therefore it can be really busy.  I highly recommend leaving your car in Anacortes if you are comping over for one day.  If you plan on being here for more than one day it is nice to have a car to travel to some of the National Parks on the island. We do have transportation rentals and I will cover that later on.  So if you are going to drive your car onto the ferry being in line AT LEAST TWO HOURS early is recommended.  Since it is a holiday weekend I would be earlier, maybe three hours early.  If you are walking on just make sure you arrive early enough to secure parking and buy a ticket.  Walking on is the easiest way to get on the ferry, walking on with a bike is a good option as well.

Leaving the island on the ferry is pretty much the same as arriving.  Remember there are a lot of people wanting to get off the island as well and they probably are wanting the depart on the prime time ferries as well.  So be early and be patient.  The ferry loading lane works deal with a lot of people in a a day and do their best to get you set up for a ride home.  Be polite and ask them about the ferry you wish to catch and the best time to park.  Again start the process early.  Do not wait until two hours before scheduled departure time.  Walk and bike passengers you just need to be there a half hour early.

Booking a Tour.

If you plan on booking a Whale Watch or Kayak Tour, DO IT NOW.  It is not uncommon for kayak tours to completely fill for the weekend.  So reserve now.  I recommend Western Prince for power boat whale watching and of course Discovery Sea Kayaks for your kayak tour.

Lodging.

Again if you have not started looking, Start Now.  Book as soon as you can to secure a place to stay.  There are many options from Small Hotels, B&B’s and camping.  Research the area a bit and find the accommodations that best fit your needs.

On island transportation.

  1. Scooter Rentals: Susie’s Mopeds
  2. Car Rentals: M&W Auto

Well that is about it.  If you are planning on arriving for the holiday weekend, start planning now.  Get every thing set up and reserved and you will be a happy traveler.  Remember it can get busy on the island to relax when waiting for ferries and traveling on and off the island.  Once on the island and you a good pre trip plan, then there is nothing but relaxing and having fun for you today.