San Juan Island

Friday Harbor can be called the hub of the San Juan Islands as well as “the big city” on San Juan Island. Home to 2075 residents, it maintains a small town atmosphere. It’s the only municipality in the islands. Founded in 1909 it will celebrate its 100th anniversary in February 2009. This town is the shopping center and historical center for the islands. All of this on one square mile or 640 acres.

Special buildings to observe are the San Juan County Courthouse, the Whale Museum and a commercial building near the ferry landing that was once called the Sweet Tooth Saloon. On the west side of the island visit the famous San Juan Historical Park which contains American Camp and English Camp. They are listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

Discover Lime Kiln Lighthouse on the west side of the island and Valley Church in the San Juan Valley which dates back to 1892. Hotel de Haro was built in Roche Harbor in 1886. The hotel and gardens are the centerpiece of the community today.

Pick up a brochure which will help you investigate 26 old homes and buildings on this island. The Chamber of Commerce and San Juna Historical Museum are good places to get information.

Friday Harbor provides a touch of culture. For details, stop at the park overlooking the large marina on the waterfront. Carvings by well known Susan Point are featured there. The Whale Museum holds great interest for all who love the massive black and white Orcas. (Whale watching cruises are a delightful way to watch a whale pod lurking about in the waters of the San Juans.)

From July 1 to Labor Day revel in music ar the prot of Friday Harbor. At the first of June listen to jazz at the Marine Labs or take a San Juan Island Artist’s Studio Tour. Enjoy the July 4th parade, fireworks and a youth circus. The big summer event, the San Juan County Fair, will be help August 15-18. Check a local newspaper for other events in season.

You can stay at a resort, bed and breakfast, vacation rental or hotel. Or camp out at a park. Good food is served at island restaurants and cafes. Charter boats are available for wildlife or whale watching tours. Campers will want to look at Lime Kiln State Park (facing Vancouver Island) or San Juan County Park.

For more information on San Juan Island check out SanJuanWeb.Com

Thank you Shirley Dever for the information!