Roche HarborSan Juan Island, namesake of the picturesque San Juan Islands group.
Kenmore AirFloat plans make to seven flights from Lake Union in Seattle to Roche Harbor marina and Friday Harbor, and then return. Shuttles can bring you from Seattle-Tacoma airport to Lake Union. A spectacular, though not cheap, way to arrive.
- Take the ferry or a plane to Friday Harbor, at the other end of the island, and then a 15-minute taxi ride to Roche Harbor.
San Juan Island TransitBus service between Friday Harbor, Roche Harbor, and other island destinations. 20 minutes. Runs up to once every hour during the day at peak season.
- If you have access to a yacht, come in the marina.
- If you have an airplane, Roche Harbor has a small, private paved airstrip.
Roche Harbor is an official U.S. ports-of-entry and can process boaters through customs. The Cardinal Rule is touch land at customs dock before any other stops, fines for not doing so can be up to $5000. Besides a passport for everyone on board, you will need your boat's license number and User Fee Decal number.
Customs enforces USDA guidelines for what foods are acceptable to bring into the country and these guidelines are constantly changing so it is best to check in with them before arriving. Boaters are responsible for knowing the prohibited foods and can be fined for not declaring them.
Roche Harbor is small enough that you can walk everywhere. The whole town is oriented around the harbor, and the hotels and docks that surround it.
Sculpture Gardenaddress: opposite the airportDozens of sculptures in over 10 acres.
- The marina is the heart of town. It is jammed with a variety of pleasure boats. The ambience is very pleasant, especially when the weather is fine. See the toilet service boat, M.V. Phecal Freak (motto: "we take crap from anyone" — really!)
Lime Kiln CafeA delightful setting at the end of an old wharf. Very pleasant in the summer.
phone: +1 (360) 378-9894 x1405address: 248 Reuben Memorial DriveAn over-the-water restaurant dining on coastal-casual cuisine with flavorful cocktails. The deck sits over the harbor, offering diners the only sunset view over-water on the island. Fresh salads, creative grill sandwiches and famous BBQ ribs are menu favorites.
phone: +1 360 378-2155address: 248 Reuben Memorial DrA historic, 130 year old hotel resort right on the water.
Bicycling is very pleasant on San Juan Island. There are various bike rental options, including one by the airport. (It also rents motor scooters and jeeps.)
One of the beaches on San Juan Island is a great place to watch orcas (whales).