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Cruises to Friday Harbor, Washington

Friday Harbor, Washington (Photo: Jo Ann Snover/Shutterstock.com)

About Friday Harbor, Washington

Friday Harbor is the principal port of San Juan Island and the tourism epicenter of the beautiful and unspoiled San Juan archipelago, scattered across the strait of Juan de Fuca between Vancouver Island and the forested northern coast of Washington State. On a clear day, the snowy peaks of the Cascades mountain range offer a dramatic backdrop to the wooded islands and islets.

The town, fronted by a busy yacht marina and ferry and floatplane dock, constantly buzzes with activity. As well as serving as the hub of the yachting community, it's a popular day trip by ferry from the mainland. Whale-watching is big business here, with most companies offering guaranteed sightings of orcas, who live in three resident pods around the islands. But Friday Harbor itself is a gorgeous little place, not to be overlooked.

You'll find bars and cafes facing the water, some with rooftop terraces, along with shops and galleries on First Street and Spring Street, which runs perpendicular to the shoreline. There are three decent galleries -- Ogle Fine Art, Arctic Raven and Friday Harbor Gallery -- immediately behind the ferry dock. The shops are fun, from the quirky Serendipity Used Bookstore on 'A' Street to Pelindaba Lavender, which sells anything and everything made of lavender grown on its organic farm in the southwest of the island. Don't miss the Friday Harbor Ice Cream Company on the waterfront, where you can choose between 72 flavors (and be warned, the scoops are enormous).

More about Friday Harbor, Washington

Why go to Friday Harbor, Washington?

Pros: Pretty, arty resort packed with shops, restaurants and galleries.

Cons: Gets very busy in summer.

Bottom Line: Plenty to see in town and easy access to whale-watching.

Currency & Best Way to Get Money

Currency is the U.S. dollar and there are ATMs in town. For up-to-date exchange rates, visit www.xe.com.


English is the official language.

Friday Harbor, Washington Cruise Reviews

American Constellation
Sail Date: Apr 2019
We did the whale watching cruise. Unfortunately, we saw no whales, but the crew did a good job of seeking out other wildlife, including many sea lions and one bald eagle perched on a channel marker. Not sure if...Read More
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