Lopez Island

Lopez Island is the first stop for ferries from the port of Anacortes on the Washington State mainland. You can also arrive here on one of the daily flights from the Seattle airport. Lopez Island Washington is the third largest of the United States San Juan Islands, part of a dual archipelago that includes the Gulf Islands off the coast of British Columbia, Canada. It is located across Griffin Bay from Friday Harbor on San Juan Island and from the San Juan Historical Park.

Unusually, the Lopez Island Ferry Port (located on the northern tip of the island) is not in the only major town of Lopez Village (located on the west-central coast of the island by the airport). There is limited taxi service, and you can find taxis waiting at the port when the ferries dock. However, it is best not to rely on this during the best weather of the summer months. If you are not bringing your own car or bicycle during this time, it is best to have your transportation arranged in advance. Some of the Lopez Island Washington bed and breakfasts and hotels will arrange to collect you at the ferry port (or airport), and there are several outlets for bike rentals once you've arrived at your destination.

The island is only about fifteen miles long and about five miles wide, so a complete circuit by bicycle is possible during a single day. One of the most popular things to do on Lopez Island is enjoy cycling tours. Because the island is flatter than the other San Juan Islands, it is a cyclist's paradise. It is also quite rural, with rolling pastures dotted with forests, making for a very scenic ride. Even those who arrive on Lopez Island in their own car will often rent a bicycle for a portion of their visit.

Most of the businesses and services on Lopez Island Washington are concentrated in the small town of Lopez Village, which boasts everything from trendy art galleries to grocery stores to help supply your camping trip or your stay in vacation rentals. The village is located along Fisherman Bay, where there are marinas in case you've arrived via your own boat.

The Fisherman Bay marinas also provide the base for another of the popular things to do on Lopez Island—fishing. There are a number of operators here that also will double as scenic cruises during the whale watching season. Kayaking in this protected bay and other sheltered inlets around the island is also a wonderful activity for enjoying the lovely scenery. This is also the least intrusive method for viewing the wildlife, from whales, seals, and sea otters to the magnificent bald eagle. There are a number of oceanfront parks and beaches where your kayak can put in for picnics and tide pooling.

Perhaps the friendliest of things to do on Lopez Island is to wave. The islanders are celebrated for waving at every pedestrian, cyclist, motorist, and passerby, and this friendly activity has become a local tradition that is great fun to join. For those who want to really get into the natural beauty of the island, there are camping sites. If you need some more structured activity, there are tennis courts and a golf course. As with transportation, camp sites and dining spots should be reserved in advance, especially during the peak summer season.

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