Sunday, May 29, 2011
Washington State Kid Scene Part II: A Day Trip on San Juan Island
What an advantage we had being so close to the ferries, so we had to do a trip to the San Juan Islands and hit the main island of San Juan, starting at Friday Harbor. It was about an hour ride from Anacortes to Friday Harbor in the ferry and the kids loved driving onto the ferry and then walking around upstairs. We started at Friday Harbor and made a trip around the island, hitting Whale Watch Park” (Lime Kiln Point State Park). There we were able to have another picnic lunch while looking for whales. Keep in mind that there are cliffs with drop offs, but we were able to find an area that was safe for the kids, but we were on guard the whole time. The only whale we did see that day was the whale mile marker that Liam noticed when we hiked back to our car and also the Orca statue by the restrooms. I must say, the restrooms there were the cleanest public restrooms I have ever seen. I wish I had taken a picture (strange, I know), but the toilets were some environmental sound systems that were just huge holes that ran down into some sort of "recycling" system AND it didn't smell. AT ALL. I was totally intrigued, but so afraid that one of my kids would fall down them--I could have fallen in too! Anyhow, the whole park was fun filled-whales or not.
From there were started our circle around the island and hit an Krystal Acres alpaca farm. One of my friends from elementary school still lives in Washington and owns several, so I guess this is the area for alpacas. My son and cousin thought they were amazing and it was nice to stop and let the kids out to run a bit.
From there we headed towards the English Camp. Apparently, there was a battle between the Americans and the English over a pig. Who knew! Anyhow, the English Camp was along the water and had a beautiful English garden. Another perfect way to burn off some energy. I was thankful for having our rain boots for this park though, so think about packing them and a change of clothes!
We then drove to Roche Harbor and attempted to have ice cream, but the kids fell asleep.
And we also had to drive past the Westcott Bay Sculpture Park, featuring over 100 sculptures on 19 acres. I want to go back and visit and my heart ached as the curator seemed to get excited that we stopped, then we quickly left realizing that opening the doors might wake up the kids and they so badly needed that nap. I owe them a donation!
We then circled around and were hoping to get a glass of wine at the San Juan vineyards tasting room, but it was closed, which I guess never happens-lucky us. I should also mention that across the road from the vineyard is a camel...yes a camel. Just another fun thing for the kiddos and definitely a conversation piece.
So back toward Friday Harbor we went. My sis and I went into the market for some ice cream and we headed back to the ferry for an ice cream feast on the way home. Note: the ferries have very little food, so load up before you go! There is a cute market right in the middle of Friday Harbor and across from the visitor center where you can pick up delish picnic items and aforementioned San Juan ice cream!
A wonderful day trip, but we were exhausted. There is a lot more to see and I look forward to another trip there soon. Make sure to plan ahead and take a look at the ferry schedule. Nothing is worse than missing the ferry with cranky kids but we were there from about 9 am until 5 pm and with little cat naps here and there, it was a perfect trip. My sister and I even got in a little shopping too!