San Juan Islands
The San Juan Islands form one of the best boater paradises in
the world. The hundreds of islands are separated by nationality but
are part of the same scenic and rugged archipelago, located off the
northwest coast of Washington State. Much of the area is in a rain
shadow behind Vancouver Island, making a surprisingly dry and sunny
reprieve in the northwest. Little island communities, great
wildlife and the open water provide a real and intuitive disconnect
from the mainland.
Frequent government ferry services connect the mainland and
larger inhabited islands to each other, but scores are only
visitable by smaller shuttle boats and yachts. Friday Harbour is
San Juan's largest town and an enchanting tourist destination,
seemingly out of a Norman Rockwell painting. Anchorages are
bustling throughout summer, but largely empty in other seasons.
Yacht charters are available out of Bellingham.