What could be better than a fall adventure filled with sun, sea and wildlife? Our San Juan Islands fall getaway will provide all of that and more. September is the climax of the warmest and driest months in the San Juan’s making it a perfect time of year to visit. The days are sunny and warm and the trees are just beginning to exhibit their fall colours. The Islands are nestled in a rain shadow formed by the Olympic Mountains and Vancouver Island. The San Juans average 247 days of sunshine per year.
The San Juan Islands are a part of the San Juan Archipelago that is split into island groups based on national sovereignty. The San Juan Islands are part of Washington state, while the Gulf Islands are part of British Columbia. The number of islands in the San Juan Archipelago at high tide is 450, the San Juan Islands portion represents 172 of these islands. A limited number of the Islands are accessible by public ferry while the majority require a private or chartered vessels to be reached.
Our cruise on the Viking Star has a very strategic advantage. She can navigate many of the narrow channels providing an up close and personal feel for the islands. Her captain and crew are well versed in the islands colourful history and will share tales of the coastal Salish people, the Spanish explorer Francisco de Eliza, who charted and named the islands “San Juan” in 1791 and present day life on the islands.
Birds and Wildlife
The islands are well known for their residential pods of Orcas, Steller sea lions and Common minke whales and you will want to have your cameras ready. The largest concentration of bald eagles in the continental United States is found here along with many other shore line birds.
A visit to the Rosario Estate is sure to be a highlight of this tour. Upon your arrival you will be met by Rosario historian, musician and author, Christopher Peacock who will provide insight into the history and play excerpts from the Phantom of the Opera on the 1,972 pipe organ.
Be sure to book early on this adventure as the number is limited.
Written by: Joan Niemeier