San Juan Islands 3-Day Sample Itinerary

The San Juan Islands in Washington State are unique in both geography and history. These glacially carved islands are located in the rain-shadow of the Olympic Peninsula which gives the San Juans a reputation for more sunshine and a lot less rain than nearby Seattle.

We offer both 3-Day, 4-Day, and private custom cruises in the San Juan Islands. Our San Juan Islands cruises begin and end in Bellingham.


Day 1
Board 9:00 am in Bellingham

When you arrive, you’ll be greeted by Captain Jeffrey and Christine. After stowing your belongings and a brief orientation, Jeffrey will start the David B’s antique Washington Iron Works engine and we’ll soon be underway heading out into Bellingham Bay and the San Juan Islands.

The first stop is at Vendovi Island — named for a Fijian Chief brought to the Northwest by Charles Wilkes during the United State’s first Exploring Expedition in 1841. The islands is now owned by the San Juan Islands Preservation Trust and is home to a vast number of wildflowers and has several walking trails.

Our next stop is Sucia Island. We’ll anchor here for the night. Sucia is one of many Washington State Marine Parks that can only be reached by boat. There are miles of trails which go to fossil beds, a sunken forest, sandstone caves, vistas, and tidepools rich with sea life. The kayaking is easy enough for beginners and Sucia’s sandstone formations are beautiful to paddle past.


Day 2
Sucia Island to San Juan Island

After breakfast, Jeffrey will skiff you ashore and you can choose to roam more of the trails yourself, or go on a guided walk with Christine, or if you prefer, you can take a kayak for a paddle along the shore of Sucia’s Echo Bay.

Upon returning to the David B, you’ll discover that Jeffrey has prepared lunch. While you dine, he and Christine will raise the anchor and we’ll be on our way to the next anchorage.


Our next spot, Garrison Bay. It’s a lovely anchorage on San Juan Island that was named by the English citizens who occupied this bay during the Pig War between 1859 and 1874. English Camp as it is called, is now a National Park and has a small visitor center and many trails. A walk to the top of Young Hill where there’s a beautiful panorama of the Olympic Mountains, Vancouver Island, the Gulf Islands in British Columbia, and several of the San Juan Islands is always a favorite.


In the evening you’ll fill up on another delicious dinner cooked by Christine on the David B’s wood burning cook stove.


Day 3
Roche Harbor – Return to Bellingham

The last morning is often a lazy one on the David B as Christine bakes her hand-made croissants and prepares a special breakfast. It’s too good to rush.

After breakfast is finished and the David B is underway again, you’ll have a chance for some shopping at Roche Harbor, or check out the Westcott Bay Outdoor Sculpture Garden, or take a hike through a forest to the McMillin Mausoleum. By mid-day you’ll be back to the David B and cruising the inner islands on your way back to Bellingham.


When you return to the dock, the only thing you’ll wish for is more time on the David B.