Whidbey Island is located at the top of Puget Sound, squeezed between Port Townsend on the Olympic Peninsula and the Everett-Seattle-Anacortes area on the mainland. Its irregular 50 mile long shape is surrounded by Admiralty Inlet and the Strait of Juan de Fuca to the west and Skagit Bay and Saratoga Passage to the east. Rimmed by a saltwater coastline, the interior boasts forests and lowlands, lakes and lagoons.
It is home to a national historic reserve, several state parks, quaint small towns and harbors, festivals throughout the year, and a U.S. naval air station. It’s a weekend get-away for those in nearby cities, a tourist vacation destination and a playground for boaters, fishermen, hikers, campers, kayakers, bird watchers, divers, photographers, whale watchers, beach combers, artists and others. Hotels, bed and breakfasts, restaurants, wineries, art galleries, antique shops and spas are found throughout the island.
Part of the fun of Whidbey Island is getting there. Two Washington State Ferry routes transport vehicles, bicyclists and walk-on passengers from the Everett-Seattle area and from Port Townsend on the Olympic Peninsula. You can also drive to the north end of the island from Anacortes via the impressive Deception Pass Bridge.
There’s a lot of beauty, fun and adventure packed into this small island including several small towns. From the north they include: Oak Harbor, Coupeville, Greenbank, Langley, Freeland, and Clinton. While you may be able to drive from one end to the other in an hour or so, you’ll want to spend a lot more time exploring some of the following island attractions and enjoying the breath-taking views and spectacular sunsets.
- Historic downtown with turn-of-the-century buildings, a U.S. Naval Station, and the Whidbey Island Race Week yacht regatta in July.
- The Deception Pass Bridge – A beautifully arched bridge spans more than a quarter mile between forested cliffs to cross the turbulent channel known as Deception Pass and connect Whidbey Island with Anacortes. You can park your car and walk to the bridge sidewalk for fabulous views of the cliffs and the pass below. It’s fun to watch pleasure boats pass through on their way to or from the San Juan Islands. Most boater wait for slack tide to avoid eddies and whirlpools that form when millions of gallons of water rush through at tide change. Occasionally you’ll see an impatient boater going through sideways.
- Deception Pass State Park – 4,134 acres offering saltwater and fresh lake beach combing and boating activities, hiking, biking and horse trails, docks and boat ramps, and campgrounds.
- Waterfront town located in the narrow central part of Whidbey Island, claims to be the second oldest city in Washington State.
- Island County Museum, Admiralty Lighthouse, 17,400 acre Ebey’s Landing National Historic Reserve, Fort Eby State Park, Coupeville Arts Center, farms, gardens and Penn Cove mussels.
- Between Coupeville and Langley with views of Mount Rainer and Mount Baker in the Cascade Range and the peaks of the Olympic Mountains.
- Historic 522 acre Greenback Farm, once the biggest loganberry farm in the world. Still grows loganberries and features a wine shop and tasting room, the Whidbey Pie Café and Greenbank Cheese and Specialty Shop.
- Meerkerk Rhododendron Gardens, 10 acres of gardens, 43 acres of natural preserve and 5 acres of trails.
- Perched high on a cliff on the southwestern side of Whidbey Island offers fabulous views of the Saratoga Passage and the Olympic Mountains
- Quaint small downtown area with galleries, antique shops, clothing boutiques, an ice cream shop, several restaurants. Walk or drive down the hill toward the water to visit the boat harbor.
- Whidbey Island Vineyard and Winery
- South Whidbey State Park offers 347 acres for camping, walking old growth forests, exploring the tidelands, and hiking the trails.
- Bush Point Lighthouse
- Holmes Harbor Golf Course – 18 hole