San Juan Island, the largest of the San Juan Islands in Washington State, is easily accessible via a scenic ferry ride from Anacortes or a short flight from Seattle. This time of year is still considered the quiet season, with the busier season not officially kicking in until June 15th, which means you’ll have the chance to enjoy a much more tranquil getaway along with lower accommodation rates. At Friday Harbor House, a small inn on a prominent bluff in the town of Friday Harbor, guests enjoy beautiful water views, a fireplace and an oversized Whirlpool bath along with the chance to dine on meals featuring farm-fresh produce and herbs from the inn’s garden. There are a number of farm-to-table restaurants on the island, in addition to great art galleries, museums and boutiques. Rent a kayak and get out on the water, watching for orca whales that are often spotted near Lime Kiln Point and along the entire western shore. You’ll also have a good chance of seeing seals, sea lions, otters, porpoise, bald eagles and more.
Friday Harbor’s annual Memorial Day Parade and ceremony, beginning at 10 a.m. on the holiday, is an authentic small town parade that’s also well-worth attending.