San Juan Islands Boating

San Juan Islands boating is the stuff that boating dreams are made of. Hundreds of islands can be found in the San Juans chain, and a few main ones offer all the services that boaters could need. Add in the splendid scenery and the wildlife viewing opportunities, and it only gets better. Summer is when most boating enthusiasts come to explore the waters of the San Juan Islands, as this is when the weather and water conditions are at their best. You don't have to limit yourself to the summer season, however, and if you aren't a competent sailor, there are more than enough San Juan Islands sailing charters that can supply you with a boat, a skipper, and a small crew.

Boating in the San Juans
Boating in the San Juans

The San Juan Islands are home to a number of boating charter companies, and these operations are available for any number of fun excursions. Perhaps you'll contact one of the San Juan Islands yacht charters and arrange a romantic sunset cruise for two, or maybe you'll prefer doing some whale watching. Many of the boat charters in the San Juans also offer to take their guests fishing, and you can always venture out in search of isolated beaches if that suits your fancy. Whatever your intentions, your adventure out on the open water can last anywhere from a few hours to a few days or more.

Booking a guided excursion through a charter company isn't the only option when it comes to San Juan Islands boating. You can bring your own boat if you please and take your own tours, and bareboat rentals are available for those who just want to borrow a watercraft. Full-service marinas can be found on San Juan Island and Orcas Island, so there are places to park if you want to get on dry land for a while. Some of the marinas are found at resorts, so you might look to go that route when visiting. The Roche Harbor Resort is one such resort. Also worth noting is the fact that the San Juan Islands offer a dozen marine parks with mooring buoys and/or docks for boaters to take advantage of. Popular San Juan Islands marine parks include Jones Island, Stuart Island, and Spencer Spit Park on Lopez Island.

Getting out on the water is one of the most rewarding things to do in the San Juan Islands, and thanks to all the charter companies, you don't have to be a seasoned sailor if you want to do some boating. San Juan Islands boating excursions can be arranged on mainland Washington State, too, and your cruise can include stops at other regional destinations, such as British Columbia's Vancouver Island. You can also take a ferry to the San Juans and get your boating fix that way.

When you're not doing some boating in the San Juan Islands, you might interest yourself in the kayaking possibilities. Kayak rentals are easy to come by, and guided tours can be arranged if you don't want to go it alone. As is true with boating, kayaking in the San Juan Islands is best enjoyed during the warmer months, as that's when the weather is at its best and the waters at their calmest.

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