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Old 06-26-08, 05:05 PM   #1
DnvrFox
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To Seattle July 15 for a week - Whidbey Island and environs - 50+ advice needed

Heading to Seattle July 15 for a week - Whidbey Island and environs.

We will be staying 3 nights in Whidbey Island (southern section) and 4 nights in Mt Vernon

Activities planned so far:

Olympia National Park - Keystone to Port Townsend Ferry
San Juan, Orcas and Lopez Islands by public ferry - (rental bike on Lopez Island)
Victoria BC and some sort of "tea Room" - they seem to have plenty - wife's idea!
Visit with niece who is loaning us their vacation rental on Whidbey for 3 nights.

Any thoughts, cautions, etc.?

Things we are missing?

We are NOT museum or shopping or restaurant folks, love being in nature.
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Old 06-26-08, 06:14 PM   #2
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Butchart Gardens are amazing as is the Vancouver Aquarium.
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Old 06-26-08, 08:57 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by DnvrFox View Post
Any thoughts, cautions, etc.?

Things we are missing?
When you're in Port Angeles, the drive up to Hurricane Ridge is nice; gorgeous views.

*definitely* take a sea kayaking trip in the San Juans. You and Mrs. DnvrFox will love it; there are all kinds of options (one hour, two hour, half-day, etc.).

And, even though you said you're not a museum person, the museum in downtown B.C. (the big provincial/government museum) is pretty good if you're interested in the history of the native peoples of this area.

My one caution: I don't like whale watching trips. I've done it twice. Yes, you see whales...rather, you see their fins for short periods of time. You also see the 8 year old across the aisle vomiting red licorice on the floor of the boat. I'd rather be in a sea kayak looking at a sea sponge than doding vomit on a whale watching trip.

Last edited by BengeBoy; 06-26-08 at 09:02 PM.
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Old 06-26-08, 09:00 PM   #4
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Sounds like you might be having high tea. Be ready for a lot of small sweet things and all the tea you want. Lots of old looking doubble decker buses. The Ferry rides are pretty nice and the islands tend to have friendly people on them. Walking around them was always easy so biking should be as well. But I haven't been there in at least ten years. However it seemed to me that High Tea was not pure casual. A regular tea house would be much like a coffee house with scones and such.
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Old 06-26-08, 10:05 PM   #5
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I live in Port Townsend and used to live on South Whidbey. What did you have in mind for the Olympic Mountains? Just an hour or longer?
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Old 06-27-08, 10:51 AM   #6
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A few things to do in Victoria (my old home town) Hit the Empress for High Tea,stroll up Tourist Row (the street in front of the Empress and try to keep the misses out of the stores)Stop into Rodgers Chocolates if only to smell the ambeiance of over a hundred years of chocloatery(sp),a word of caution stay away from the Victoria Creams!Good for a LOT of energy and calories . A little farther up the street on the other side of the road Morris's Tobaccoists another 100 year establihment with real Cuban cigars available. I don't smoke but still like going to take a look.As BB stated if you have the time the Royal B.C. Museum is worth the visit and also Butchart's Gardens are worth the drive or take a tour bus from in front of the Empress to them.
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Old 06-27-08, 11:07 AM   #7
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Our plan is to use Whidbey Island, and then Mt Vernon, as a base for day trips. We don't enjoy packing and unpacking. We will have a rental car.

So, one day across the Port Townsend ferry to Olympia Nat Park, maybe the Hoo Rain Forest??

Another day to Lopez Island

Another day to San Juan

Etc.

Thanks for all the great responses.
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Old 06-28-08, 10:08 AM   #8
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It will take you all day to drive to the Hoh and back with no time for a hike. I would say stay to the closer sides of the Olympics. You could drive up to Hurricane Ridge out of Port Angeles and still have time for a bit of a hike. It is way up high so you don't spend time walking into the mountains. It is the same with the San Juan islands, once you get to them, you should stay a night on one because you will spend all your time traveling to get there.
May I suggest that you spend two days in the Olympics and then take the ferry from Port Angeles to Victoria. There used to be a ferry from Victoria that went through the San Juans which would be a great way to return.
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Old 08-08-08, 06:31 PM   #9
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DnvrFox, how was your trip?

(sorry if I missed a recap somewhere earlier)
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Old 08-08-08, 06:39 PM   #10
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The trip was great.

No bicycling - just didn't fit in.

Explored Whidbey Island, including the lighthouse and Ebey? Point, hiked several miles along the coast.

Did the boat ride at Deception Pass

Went to San Juan Island, took the bus tour. Looked for Orcas, but never saw any. They were a bit too far out. Olympic National Park, Orcas Island, the Pike? Market in Seattle - had the yummiest berries in several places - stand along the way, etc.

Ate some seafood.

Saw my niece and her husband in West Seattle.

Weather was great.

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Old 08-08-08, 06:44 PM   #11
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Isn't that a great area? I was up there for a few days last October. The natural beauty is absolutely breathtaking and the seaport towns are fun. I hiked about 12 miles of trails in Olympic National Park. It was so beautiful that it was hard to stop from walking "just a bit further."
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Old 08-08-08, 07:55 PM   #12
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The trip was great.
Glad you enjoyed it!

This month is our 7-year anniversary of moving to the Seattle area, and I'm still marveling at what a great place it is....and if you buy enough rain gear you can bike all year...
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