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San Juan Islands

The well-known San Juan Islands are the dream destination for thousands of boaters each year. The scenery is stunning, the fishing is good, the anchorages are plentiful, and the amenities — marina resorts, settlements, villages, and towns — are many and varied. The San Juans have a feel about them that is different from most other coastal cruising areas. We are cruising among the peaks of a majestic sunken mountain range, and each island peak is different from the others. We’ve truly left the bustle of civilization and found a corner of paradise found at marine parks that are only accessible by private boat.

Top Destinations

San Juan Island

Friday Harbor • Roche Harbor • Westcott Bay • Garrison Bay

Lopez Island

Fisherman Bay • Spencer Spit • Watmough Bay

Orcas Island

Eastsound • Deer Harbor • Rosario Resort

Plus…

Blakely Island • Sucia Island • Jones Island • Shaw Island • Stuart Island • James Island

Plan Out Your Trip

The San Juans are fully covered in the latest Waggoner Cruising Guide. It provides all you need about marinas, anchorages, passages, and attractions.  Plan your day’s route with the guide’s detailed planning maps. Get your copy of the Waggoner Cruising Guide book!

Plus, there’s more to help you plan a great cruise through the San Juan Islands. Read on…

Deer Harbor – Relaxed Atmosphere with Great Food

Deer Harbor – Relaxed Atmosphere with Great Food

One of my top 5 cruising locations in the San Juan Islands is Deer Harbor on Orcas Island. Ever since my first visit over 30 years ago, I have always felt relaxed when moored either at the marina dock or on the hook in the bay. It is a beautiful location with a...

Shoulder Season Cruising in 2021

Shoulder Season Cruising in 2021

If there was ever a time for cruising, this year’s shoulder season of September and October is it! For boaters whose schedules allow for cruising during the spring and fall, the rewards are many. This year should be especially desirable. Canada’s border opening in...

Vessel Traffic Lanes – Pleasure Boaters Beware

Vessel Traffic Lanes – Pleasure Boaters Beware

Vessel Traffic Lanes are used to regulate busy traffic in confined waterways for deep-draft commercial vessels such as cargo ships and tugs with barges. VTS is primarily for commercial vessels, although all power-driven vessels 40 meters (131 feet) or longer,...

Be Whale Wise

Be Whale Wise

With boating season kicking off, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW), Be Whale Wise and other partners are reminding boaters this season to do their part to follow regulations that support Southern Resident killer whale (SRKW) survival. By following...

A Hike through History on Cypress Island

A Hike through History on Cypress Island

Backyard CruisingEagle Harbor on Cypress Island is a great choice for a day’s cruise. Located only 8 nautical miles from Anacortes, Eagle Harbor offers anchorage and several DNR mooring buoys for boats up to 50 feet at no charge. You can spend the day...

The Spell of Spieden Island

The Spell of Spieden Island

Mention the name Spieden Island, and visions of the sea meeting steep grassy hillsides, dotted with large boulders left by glacier activity, come to mind. While the north side of this two-mile long island is forested, the south side has beautiful open...

San Juan Preservation Trust Properties

San Juan Preservation Trust Properties

Did you know that the San Juan Preservation Trust protects and preserves 300 properties on 20 different islands in the San Juan’s? These properties offer miles of trails and shoreline, with public access. Many of these sites are accessed only by dinghy or...

Vita’s Wildly Delicious on Lopez Island

Vita’s Wildly Delicious on Lopez Island

Vita’s Wildly Delicious in Lopez Village is one of the most unique and charming communities in the San Juan Islands, withspecialty shops, art studios, cafes, and a bakery. The farmer’s market, B & Bs, and community parks add to the friendly village...

Gunkholing Shaw Island

Gunkholing Shaw Island

Shaw Island is the geographic center of the San Juan Islands and is 7.7 square miles with a permanent population of about 150, which better than doubles in the summer. Gunkholing on Shaw Island. Shaw Island doesn’t have the busyness of Friday Harbor or the...

Another Side of the San Juan Islands – West Sound Marina

Another Side of the San Juan Islands – West Sound Marina

Suffering from a bad case of cabin fever, Arlene and I were in serious need of a spring boat trip, but the weather was predicted for more of the same – overcast sky, 20 to 25 kt. wind. So, with a few hours of break in the wind, we jumped aboard Easy...

Matia Island – A Pristine Island with an Intriguing Past

Matia Island – A Pristine Island with an Intriguing Past

As one of the San Juan Islands’ “Boundary Islands,” Matia Island (pronounced Ma-TEE-ah) is visited by thousands of recreational boaters each year. The island is incredibly beautiful and has a sense of adventure. It seems to floats on the waters of the...

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