The beaches in the Pacific Northwest have their own special kind of charm – rocks, pebbles and shells mixed with darker, rougher sand. Many spots are dog friendly, and offer an opportunity to witness amazing sunsets while relaxing on sun-bleached driftwood.
Sunset Beach – On the north shore of Washington Park, there is a boat launch, rest rooms, reservable picnic shelter (call 360-293-1918 for more information), playground equipment and open play area.
West Beach – Along the 2.2. mile loop in Washington Park there are various turn out points. The second beach of Washington Park is located about 1/4 mile on the loop along the western shores of Fidalgo Island. This beach can be accessed by a stairway. Washington Park’s second beach is full of sea life. While combing the rocky beach you can discover crab, starfish & sea urchins.
Rosario Beach – Just a 10-mile drive south of downtown Anacortes in Deception Pass State Park, in a small cove on the southwest corner of Fidalgo Island. You’ll find this jewel complete with wildflowers in the summer, old trees that bald eagles may nest in, and an amazing diversity of beach life. The sandy beaches and tide pools are popular for everyone, and if you’re lucky, you might even catch a glimpse of orcas, porpoises, and the occasional gray whale swimming through Rosario Straight to the west. Learn more about Rosario Beach here.
Bowman Bay – Marinas and docks are available near the campground, in Deception Pass State Park – this is a great place to launch your kayaks! The trails in this area are short and rewarding, and are among the most scenic in Deception Pass State Park. From here, you can easily hike to Lottie Bay, Lighthouse Point and Rosario Beach to soak in spectacular views of Puget Sound, Deception Pass, and the San Juan Islands. If you look along the south end of the bay, you’ll see a large grassy field and a small playground. This was the site of a Department of Wildlife salmon hatchery from the late 1940s until 1970. The only remaining evidence of the hatchery is a large brick duplex overlooking the field that now houses park staff. Learn more about Bowman Bay here.
Guemes Channel Trail Sites – After turning onto to Oaks Ave. from Commercial travel west for 2.6 miles. Turn right on Ship Harbor Blvd. Wind your way left down to the cul de sac on the Guemes Channel. If you walk to the left you will find your self at the Ship Harbor Interpretive Trail which is nearing completion. Walking to the right puts you on the beginning of the Guemes Channel Trail. It is a short but beautiful walk giving you the feel of just how spectacular this trail will be when completed. Click here for a map of the Guemes Channel Trail.
SHIP (Ship Harbor Interpretive Preserve) (1900 Shannon Point Rd, Anacortes, WA) – At the Shannon Point Marine Center, located between the Washington State Ferry terminal on the west, and residential developments near the cul-de-sac at Edwards Way on the east. There is a trail system that is protective of particularly sensitive areas and also provides environmental education about the role and significance of the beach and wetlands. In addition to the 25 acres of freshwater wetlands, there are also five acres of upland habitat and 2,000 fee of sandy beach and subtidal eel grass beds. It is a rich and interesting area, with an abundance of plants and wildlife – such as great blue herons; wrens and sparrows; small mammals; Dungeness crabs; and hawks and sea gulls. There is also a 1,000 foot long, 6 foot wide pedestrian boardwalk, built to be an extension of the 1,600-foot path from the Edwards Way cul-de-sac west of San Juan Passage to the wetlands.
Seafarer’s Memorial Park (Seafarers Way & 14th St.) – Not too far from downtown Anacortes is a beautiful waterfront park dedicated to dozens of local men who have died at sea. In addition to a monument listing their names, Seafarers’ Memorial Park is home to the “Lady of the Sea.” This sculpture by Deborah Copenhaver was commissioned by the late Ray Separovich, identified on the sculpture plaque as “mariner, father, public servant.” The woman, with a small boy hanging to her skirt, stands with lantern in hand. The plaque inscription reads: “Dedicated to those who work and play by the sea, and the families and friends who wait for them.” Boaters returning to Cap Sante Boat Basin pass by the Rotary Park gazebo at the base of Cap Sante, a site accessible only by foot. The Port of Anacortes’ Seafarers’ Memorial Park is a daytime favorite among locals, many of whom visit for a relaxing lunchtime break.
Kiwanis Waterfront Park (1708 6th Street) – two acres of developed parkland located on the north Anacortes shoreline. There are picnic tables, benches, pathways, overlook, beach access and parking to help enjoy the views of the Guemes Channel, Guemes Island, boat traffic and ferry traffic. Parking is available near Kiwanis Park on Sixth Street.
Cap Sante Park (1000 W Avenue) – A 37 acre forested promontory at the eastern edge of Anacortes. It is primarily a viewpoint overlooking the marina, the City of Anacortes, March Point, Fidalgo Bay and the Cascades. A remnant of an amphitheater is located on the east bank of the park.
Rotary Park (701 T Avenue) – Located on the north and east edge of the Cap Sante Marina at the base of Cap Sante, this is a 1.5 acre linear park . Rotary Park has a paved pedestrian trail out to the Cap Sante breakwater, picnic tables and a shelter. Parking is available at the start of the trail.
N Avenue Park (2nd Street & N Avenue) – Relax on 0.4 acres of undeveloped street-end park land with views to Guemes channel.