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Funky Art, Lavender Ice Cream, Bald Eagles, and more

San Juan Island is like a giant park.

It’s a two hour drive from Seattle(/Kent) to the Anacortes ferry and then another hour to the island, but the good news is that the view from aboard that ferry alone is worth the commute.

Left: The view while waiting for the ferry at Anacortes. Right: You can see the line for foot passengers.
Left: The view while waiting for the ferry at Anacortes. Right: You can see the line for foot passengers boarding.
ferry-sea
The ferry takes reservations, a good idea if you plan on making a trip to the islands with your car. Left: We boarded the ferry by driving on. Right: View en route to Friday Harbor.
anacortes-aboard
The morning started off foggy and chilly.

whale-trailUntil now, I can’t remember having ridden a ferry by driving a car onto it, but it’s an experience to be had. You can take your bicycle too and the island is pretty bike friendly.

While aboard, we saw an otter, seal, and a many birds. A sign showing the Whale Trail says that it’s possible to see even larger sea life along the way (orcas, whales, and porpoises, among others!).

We brunched after we arrived in Friday Harbor. The town is pretty small, like it might take 30-40 minutes to walk around all the main streets.

Top: Local antiques shop. Bottom Left: Mopeds and funky rentals. Bottom Right: Savory, deep dish breakfast pancake with bacon.
Top: Local antiques shop. Bottom Left: Mopeds and funky rentals. Bottom Right: Savory, deep dish breakfast pancake with bacon.
We caught the Saturday farmer's market too. Fresh blackberries!
We caught the Saturday farmer’s market too. Fresh blackberries!

Our San Juan Island experience pretty much consisted of driving on the scenic byway around the island. Stop #2 was a sculpture garden.

sculpture-garden

The garden had wooded areas, a small lake, and even mud flats (as pictured in upper left).
The garden had wooded areas, a small lake, and even mud flats (as pictured in upper left).

There were poems around the park and art. For example:

“On Mud Flats”

Where

the smell is,

Life is.

– D. M. Jenkins

After wandering around we found the piece that highlighted the park. An easel. And approaching it from the back we anticipated something terribly cheesy.

Cheesy it was!

Yes, with a filter.
Yes, with a filter.

But also made for plenty of awesome photos.

single-paintings

Next up, an alpaca farm, lavender farm, and some lavender ice cream!

The Alpaca farm consisted of views of the alpacas grazing and an alpaca product gift shop.
The Alpaca farm consisted of views of the alpacas grazing and an alpaca product gift shop.
lavender-farm
The lavender farm really went through all aspects of lavender, from how essential oils are made, to how to use it in sweet/savory dishes, and household applications from first aid to cleaning! Duly impressed.

I could not believe how tasty the ice cream was and how well the lavender flavor came through.

We stumbled upon a huge strawberry sculpture, among a few others, and ran into the local artist who constructed these huge works while visiting.

road-sculptures
Top Right: Strawberry Interior. Bottom Left: Mailboxes in a row. Bottom Right: Yellow submarine.
I can only imagine this pineapple structure was Spongebob Squarepants inspired. The artist (on the right) said he works on a new sculpture every year, putting in time everyday after work. His goal? "If I can make you smile, I've done my job"
I can only imagine this pineapple structure was Spongebob Squarepants inspired, Gary the snail makes an appearance after all! The artist (on the right) said he works on a new sculpture every year, putting in time everyday after work. His goal? “If I can make you smile, I’ve done my job”

The highlight of the island (aside from the mirror easel) was seeing bald eagles!

A pair of them were on the lookout atop a tree that was RIGHT NEXT TO THE ROAD WE WERE DRIVING DOWN. I was so awestruck there was no time for a photo, even thought they looked ready to have their portraits taken for a Getty Images.

Can see a single silhouette of what might be a bald eagle in the lower right.
Can see a single silhouette of what might be a third bald eagle in the lower right.

Spent some time enjoying the lookout spots along the coast before it was time to return to Friday Harbor for our ferry back.

Greens

Top Right: On the way back we sat in the car on the lower deck. This is the view!
Top Right: On the way back we sat in the car on the lower deck. This is the view!

5 Comments

  1. Patty Crowe Patty Crowe

    Lovely. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Eve Eve

    I love all the pictures especially the cheese one 😚

  3. red red

    Ditto to previous comments about your beatiful snapshots!
    You found awesome lavender ice cream, to be able to taste it above the rich milk base! There used to be an eagle nest by A’s elementary school. Always so thrilling to see them.

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