Going on a family vacation is about having fun and taking in new experiences. There are plenty of things to do and see from the San Juan Islands in Washington State. These islands offer something for all, regardless of interests. You could take a day on a whale watch tour to see the amazing mammals or you could see a variety of wildlife on a guided seas kayak tour. However, if you would rather use your legs to take your on an adventure, you could look into hiking or a guided bicycle tour.
There are plenty of bicycle tours available that cover the three of the main islands: San Juan Island, Orcas Island and Lopez Island. Each of these will offer different views, different routes and are perfect for different capabilities and experience levels.
Lopez Island offers the easiest bicycling terrain of all the islands. There are few hills and few cars and the terrain is perfect for those with younger children. A laid back community, Lopez enjoys a small population of about one thousand islanders who are known for their friendly demeanor. The smallest of the 3 major islands,cycling routes take you past farms and vineyards and the chance to bicycle along the ocean shore where you can view bird life. You can also take hikes at the state park or have a picnic by the water.
San Juan Island offers a few more hills as well as flat terrain and rolling hills. The routes on San Juan Island cover 20-30 miles and can offer more mileage for the hard core cyclists. San Juan Island boasts plenty of picturesque vistas to see amazing land and sea wildlife such as deer, fox bald, eagles and orca whales along the way. There are also some great places to stop as you cycle along which include hiking, visiting rural artisan shops, Whale Watch Park and vineyards which make for fun exploration.
The most challenging island to cycle is Orcas Island, with great opportunities to push yourself to the limits. Orcas offers rewarding panoramic views of the San Juan Islands and Cascade Mountain Range at the top of Mount Constitution. Orcas Island is a lush, evergreen haven for hikers with quiet old growth paths along Turtle Back Mountain or the chance to explore Moran State Park where you can enjoy hiking around lakes and cooling off in a waterfall..
The San Juan Islands are a popular option for many wanting to take a guided bicycle tour. Guides will pick you up at the ferry terminal and then take you on a 2-6 day trip staying at inns or camping. Tour companies usually take care of all of the reservations for accommodations and eating as well as providing the gear you need to make it easier for you to just pack a bag and show up! Bicycle tours are extremely popular, especially during the summer months. It is usually best to reserve your tour in advance.