Three Day Itinerary

Drive off the Mainland

The transformation from mainland to island is not only physical, it’s psychological. The pace is not only slower, it feels as if you’ve stepped back in time. The mild climate and close proximity to Seattle make either island an easy getaway all year round.

Explore uncrowded beaches and winding forested trails. Dine on delicious food from local farms and the surrounding waters. Camano Island is known for its arts community and abundant wildlife, including Bald Eagles and whales. An added benefit is the island is easily accessible by bridge, 24 hours a day.
The dramatic beauty of Deception Pass State Bridge, makes it a memorable arrival to the island. Surrounded by snow capped mountains and pristine waters, the main road is appropriately named the Whidbey Scenic Isle Way and home to Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve. Look for jets over- head from the Naval Air Station.
As you travel through serene farmland and small seaside villages, stop to enjoy authentic Northwest culture. Home to several state parks, the island offers easy ways to enjoy nature. On the southern end, ferries leave every 30 minutes, easily connecting the island with the mainland. The 20 minute crossing is a relaxing departure.

Day 1 – Camano Island

Named “the easy island,” Camano Island offers visitors a relaxed experience. The island is known for its Dungeness Crab, arts community, and unspoiled, natural beauty. To get there, drive 76 miles (123 kilometers) north of Sea-Tac International Airport on Interstate 5. Take exit 212 and go west through the town of Stanwood, over a bridge, and onto the island. The roads on the island create an uncomplicated driving loop.

Stop here to pick up maps and to learn where to eat, where to stay, things to see and do along with the island’s many hidden treasures. Located in the Camano Plaza, the visitor center is near the IGA Grocery Store and the Chevron gas station. It is next door to a public golf course and Canopy Tours NW, a zip line, through an organic farm and forest, is across the street.
Two state parks are only a mile apart on Saratoga Passage where whales and Bald Eagles are commonly seen. Both have forested hiking trails, as well as relaxed beach walks and overnight camping in cabins. Depending on the season, Cama Beach features a small store and dining at the Cama Cafe. e Center for Wooden boats also often has boats for rent. Looking west, the beaches provide dramatic sunset views of Whidbey Island.
Wander the beach and forest on these easy hiking trails. Explore the hidden “Hobbit” trail leading through a thicket of moss covered trees. Enjoy spectacular views of the Cascade Mountains, Mount Baker and Port Susan Bay. Over 125 different species of birds have been spotted here.
Look for the giant crab sculpture to find the largest collection of shopping and dining venues on the island. The Camano Island Marketplace is home to the Camano Island Coffee Roasters. Locally made works of art and products make this an ideal stop to purchase a unique gift to take home.

Day 2 – Whidbey Island

Whidbey Island is 42 miles (68 kilometers) from Camano Island. Drive Highway 532 off Camano Island, through Stanwood. Travel north onto Interstate 5. Take exit 230 onto Highway 20, which puts you on the Cascade Loop. Turn left at the Whidbey Island Deception Pass exit and drive onto the island.

This is one of the most iconic images of the state and towers 180 feet (55 meters) above the swirling waters connecting Saratoga Passage with the Strait of Juan de Fuca. On both sides of the bridge are the rugged and lush forests, beaches and hiking trails of Deception Pass State Park. Explore the most popular park in the state of Washington. Watch for whales, seals, porpoises, Bald Eagles, shore birds and deer.
Note: As you approach Deception Pass Bridge, you may wish to pull over safely at one of the turn outs to take a photograph or to walk across the bridge.
Home to Naval Air Station Whidbey, which has made a profound contribution to Whidbey Island’s history and vitality. You may see and hear jets ying overhead. Take time to visit the PBY Naval History Museum on historic Pioneer Way. The town is filled with lodging, dining and shopping opportunities.
The second oldest town in Washington State, be sure to take the board walk to the wharf along the waterfront. Stroll the streets filled with shops, restaurants, lodgings and a museum. The town is located within Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve, over 27 square miles (7,000 hectacres) of beautiful farmland, it is part of the National Park system.
Admiralty Inlet was so strategic to the defense of Puget Sound in the 1890’s, that Fort Casey was one of three forts built to protect it. Climb through bunkers and batteries, see cannons, as well as Admiralty Head Lighthouse. Situated next to the Coupeville ferry terminal, it is the gateway to the Olympic Peninsula.

Day 3 – Whidbey Island

As you travel south on Whidbey Island you will intersect with State Route 525. Continue on it as you reach the narrowest part of Whidbey Island near Greenbank Farm. Follow signage directing you to various points of interest including Meerkerk Gardens, Earth Sanctuary, art galleries, as well tasting rooms for wineries and distilleries.

This is an ideal stop for antique stores and thrift shops. Freeland is where many locals like to shop and eat. It is close to Double Bluff Beach, a favorite place for a beach walk and picnic, and it also offers a great view of Mt. Rainier.
The historic Bayview Cash Store anchors this shopping hub. Stop in for a cup of tea, glass of wine, or pint of cider. Cafes, a pub, a donut shop and fine farm to table dining offers a variety of options.
Famous for its art galleries, breweries, shops and eateries, this is a charming village by the sea. Check out the Langley Whale Center and ring the whale bell if you see one from the shore. This is an idea location to take a guided kayak or whale watching tour. Upscale lodging and dining are abundant
The town and surrounding area is your final opportunity
to visit local wineries, distilleries, shops and dining. Here, you will drive onto the Clinton Ferry which crosses the water to Mukilteo every 30 minutes. Just get into line, no reservations are required. Mukilteo is home to the Future of Flight Aviation Center & Boeing Factory Tour, another recommended stop.

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