Getting there and away

Mid-June marks the beginning of high-season in the San Juan Islands. Consequently, it's wise to adopt a strategic stance when planning transit from the mainland. We'll keep this page up-to-date as June approaches to help you devise a wise plan and thereby meet us on Orcas... on time and unruffled.

Upon your arrival at the Seattle/Tacoma (SeaTac) airport, or if you're starting in Seattle, you have two general transport options: aerial (air-island), or amphibious (mainland-water-island). We've suggested two simple scenarios below, but myriad creative combinations of these two general schemes are possible. Primarily because long lines of cars can develop at the ferry terminals on weekends, we encourage those who elect not to fly to utilize a shuttle service (outlined below) or rental car to reach Anacortes, then walk on to the ferry (having parked your rental car for the weekend), enjoy the ride to Orcas, and --once on Orcas Island-- transit to Doe Bay Village Resort (or other accommodations) via shuttle or taxi services.

We suggest you start by taking a look at some maps, and -- once oriented - utilize the information provided below to design your itinerary and make any necessary reservations. You may also want to refer to the Doe Bay Resort "How to get here" web page. Good luck!

Recommended Amphibious Solution | Recommended Aerial Solution
Air Options | Land Options | Water Options

The Amphibious Solution

  1. From SeaTac International airport, arrange for ground transportation to the Anacortes ferry terminal.
  2. Drive north to the ferry terminal (1.5 HOURS BY CAR, 2.5 BY SHUTTLE), referencing pertinent maps.
  3. Take a ferry to Orcas Island (1.25 HOURS). If you came without a car, buy yourself a latte and walk onto the ferry when it arrives. Otherwise, you can choose to:
  4. Proceed (30-40 MINUTES) from the ferry terminal in the village of Orcas to Doe Bay Resort or your B&B via the city of Eastsound. The road signs are clear, but you may want to refer to a map of Orcas Island. If you are not in a car already, you have other on-island ground transport choices.

    Here's an example of how much time to budget, constrained fundamentally by the ferry schedule:

    Arrive	Arrive		Board	Arrive	Arrive
    SEATAC	Anacortes	Ferry	Orcas	Doe Bay or B&B
    9:30am	11:30am		12noon	1:20pm	2pm

The Aerial Solution

Arrange to fly with Harbor Air direct from SeaTac International airport to Eastsound airport, located at the northern tip of Orcas Island. The flight is about 1 hour, and upon arrival you can arrange for
ground transport to Doe Bay Resort (or alternative accommodations) via our on-island shuttle service, a private on-island taxi, or perhaps through transit services provided with your accommodations.


There are at least 3 airlines with flights between the Seattle area and Orcas Island:
Harbor Air: 1-800-359-3220, ~$158 RT (~$248 RT from Bay Area via Alaska Airlines)
They fly between SeaTac airport and Eastsound airport on Orcas 3x/day. Harbor has a partnership with Alaska Airlines which gets you slight discounts on continuation flights from Alaska flights.
West Isle Air: 1-800-874-4434, ~$125 RT (+$15 RT van service to Boeing Field)
They fly between Boeing Field in Seattle and Eastsound airport 3x/day. They have a shuttle between SeaTac and Boeing and are happy to arrange charter flights, as well.
Kenmore Air: 1-800-543-9595, $112 RT weekdays, $142 RT weekends
Based out of Seattle (not SEATAC airport), they fly seaplanes from Lake Union in Seattle to Rosario resort on Orcas 3-5x/day. If you have problems contacting them, call Rosario (1-800-562-8820) as they have all the schedules as well. We are having the rehearsal dinner there Friday night before the wedding, so they should be very helpful!

An alternative you may want to explore is flying into Bellingham, WA, via a flight from SEATAC to Bellingham (via Alaska Airlines, Horizon Air, Empire Airlines, or United Express) and connecting with a $33 one-way air flight to Eastsound on West Isle Air (1-800-874-4434).

Land Transport

Our shuttle service
Assuming there is enough demand, we will organize a van shuttle at a few convenient times on Friday, and perhaps Sunday. Contact us if you are interested.
Commercial shuttle service
This is a relatively expensive, slow option, but a good back up to know about. Airporter Shuttle (1-800-235-5247, 1-360-679-0600) offers one-way ($27/person) and round-trip ($49/person) transport from Seattle Airport to/from the Anacortes ferry terminal, taking about 2.5 hours. Reservations are required. Scheduled departures (7 days/week) are at 6am, 8, 10, 11, 12, 1pm, 2, 3, 5, 7 going north from the airport, and 4:25am, 6:55, 7:55, 8:55, 9:55, 10:55, 12:55, 2:55, 4:55, 6:55pm returning from the ferry.
Rental cars
The least expensive option we know of is through Xtra Car at about $20/day. Other companies look like about $25/day. Note that the ferry charge for a compact auto and driver is $17.65 (+$4.95 per passenger), assessed only on your way to the islands, not returning. Note that Orcas Island Taxi (360-376-8294) sometimes has private rental cars available for on-island use.
Our shuttle service
We will be organizing a system of shuttles to help guests move around the Island. Please contact us for more information, or this site for further developments (cell phone numbers, likely)... If you are flying to the Orcas and need to be picked up, please email us your airline and flight arrival time.
Private taxi: Orcas Island Taxi (360-376-8294)
On call 24 hours/day, and they may have rental cars available for on-island use.
Mopeds: Key Moped Rentals (360-376-2474)

Ferries (and other aquatic vehicles)

Victoria Clipper (1-800-888-2535)
Seattle to Rosario Resort (on Orcas Island), via Friday Harbor (on San Juan Island), 1/day, taking a beautiful 7 hours and costing ~$60 RT)
Washington Ferry
Services the San Juan Islands via Anacortes, WA (and Sidney, Vancouver, Canada). This is the recommended method for reaching Orcas Island from the mainland. You only pay for westbound transits (to the Islands), and only cash, in-state checks, and traveller's checks are accepted. Here's a distillation of departure times (to/from Orcas Island) and fares:

Leaves Anacortes        Arrives Orcas
5:40am                  6:55am
8:00am                  9:05am **foot traffic only. no orcas vehicles**
8:30am                  9:45am
9:00am                  10:25am
12:25pm                 1:50pm
3:30pm                  4:55pm **foot traffic only. no orcas vehicles**
4:10pm                  5:10pm
5:20pm                  6:20pm
6:40pm                  7:50pm
8:25pm                  9:50pm *Daily EXCEPT Friday*
9:35pm                  11:00pm *Friday ONLY*

EASTBOUND (ie. return to Anacortes)
Ferry Departs Orcas     Arrives Anacortes
7:15am                  8:40am
10:50am                 12:00pm
2:15pm                  3:45pm
5:05pm                  6:15pm
5:30pm                  6:30pm
8:05pm                  9:05pm

$04.95 -- Individual passenger (in vehicle or walk-on)
$17.95 -- Vehicle + driver
$02.75 -- Bicycle surcharge (unless it's on your car)

If you plan to walk on the ferry and park your car in Anacortes, you must pay if you plan to park at the ferry dock. $7 12-24 hours and $14 3 days. If you want to park for free, you can park at the South March Point Road Park and Ride, just off of route 20 before you get to Anacortes city proper. More detailed directions. There is a free shuttle to the ferries, times are listed below:

Bus Leaves Park&Ride    Bus arrives Terminal            Ferry departs
5:30am                  5:50am                          
7:15am                  7:35am                          8:00am, 8:30am
8:15am                  8:35am                          9:00am
9:15am                  9:35am
11:30am                 11:50am                         12:25pm
12:40pm                 1:00pm
2:50pm                  3:10pm                          3:30pm, 4:10pm
4:20pm                  4:40pm                          5:20pm
6:00pm                  6:20pm                          6:40pm
7:40pm                  8:00pm                          8:25pm (m-th)
8:50pm                  9:10pm                          9:35pm (f only)


Ferry Arrives           Bus leaves Terminal             Bus arrives P&R 
8:40am                  8:35am?, 9:35am                 9:10am, 10:00am
12:00pm                 11:50am?, 1:00pm                12:20pm, 1:30pm
3:45pm                  4:40pm                          5:30pm
6:30, 6:50pm            7:55pm                          8:35pm
9:05pm                  ??

As you can see, the return trips with the buses don't match very well with the revised ferry schedule right now. This is because the shuttle is contracted out to another organization. I do not know if they are planning to change the bus schedule for the interim ferry schedule, but a call to the washington state ferry phone line would probably give interested travellers more info.

San Juan Island Shuttle Express (still in service?)
Bellingham to Lieberhaven on Orcas Island
Moorage available... Possible trip from Washington Park to Doe Bay on Friday/Saturday morning? (Parking at Washington Park? Shuttle possibilities?)
Sea/kayak, SCUBA, snorkel, wind surfers, etc.
Landing is possible at Doe Bay on a cobble beach west of the promontory (look for the old boat house), or at the head of Otter Cove east of the promontory. (Other locations, rental options, tide tables for those days...)

Overview | How to get there | Where to stay | What to bring | Recreation opportunities
Don't hesitate to contact us for more information or with questions:
Scott or Annie -- 650.261.9162