Taking a vacation doesn’t mean you have to spend a whole lot of money. The natural scenic beauty is a year-round feast for your eyes, and we have many options for low-cost entertainment.
Washington Park is a great place to camp! The 220-acre city park features camping, a boat launch, and day use picnic sites. The campground is open year round. There are 68 campsites, 46 are utility sites (water & electric) These rent for $25 per night, 22 sites are non-utility that rent for $20 a night. A total of 39 campsites are available for reservations (which must be made 14 days in advance), with 29 available on a first-come, first-served basis. There is a sewer dump station located near the park exit. Camping check out time is 1pm daily. Click here to learn more about the park and their policies.
Deception Pass State Park also offers camping. Bowman Bay Campground, located on the Fidalgo Island side of the park, is a more intimate campground with only 20 sites, all located fairly close to the beach. Only two sites are hookup sites; the others are standard sites. There are showers in the campground restroom. Bowman Bay Campground is open seasonally. Click here to learn more about Deception Pass State Park, and click here to make reservations. The Deception Pass Parks Foundation also offers a lot of information on their website – click here to read more!
Take a hike! There are plenty of public parks in Anacortes that do not require a Discover Pass. Mount Erie is on the south side of Anacortes, off Heart Lake Road. At the top of Mt. Erie, elevation 1,270 ft, choose from four viewing areas and be rewarded with spectacular views in every direction. There is a small parking area and a road to the top of Mt. Erie. Trails from this area lead into a portion of the 1400 plus acres of the Anacortes Forest Lands. The Cranberry Lake area, off Georgia Ave at Cranberry lake Road, is found near the city center. It is heavily forested and contains Cranberry Lake (approximately 27 acres) and several other small lakes and bogs. The site varies in terrain from flat to steep slopes. An extensive trail system is found in this area. To learn more about the various park sites in Anacortes, click here.
Go on a picnic – Storvik Park is located at 1110 32nd Street, between 29th St. and 32nd St. There are restrooms, children’s play area, parking, and multiple picnic areas. Causland Park, at 710 N Avenue, was built in the 1920’s by John Baptiste LePage to honor Anacortes veterans from World War I to the Vietnam War. This unique park has extensive ornate rock work and is on the National Register of Historic Places. Low, serpentine mosaic walls surround the park, and a bandstand, amphitheater and terraces are similarly made of colored pebble and rock mosaic. Seafarers Memorial Park, t 14th St. and Seafarers Way, is the site of the Seaman Memorial at the Cap Sante Marina. Enjoy a meal or a snack on their picnic tables, walk the promenade and relax on the beach with a beautiful view of Fidalgo Bay.
Walk the Anacortes Mural Project, mostly along Commercial Avenue. Pop into the Visitor Information Center and pick up a free copy of the Visitor’s Map & Guide – there will be sections inside that refer to the murals, and where they’re located. You can also go to the Town Graphics website here, and browse through the tabs marked “Old Town” and “Commercial Avenue” – with over 120 murals, you’ll spend a good bit of your day looking for them all!
Make it a festival weekend! The Anacortes Waterfront Festival (happening each June), and Anacortes Art Festival (happening each August), are both free to attend.
- The Anacortes Waterfront Festival features music performances by local musicians, and showcases the talent at our High School and Middle School. There are also educational booths, and free activities like boat rides, open air car shows, a model boat show, and Quick & Dirty Boat Building. You can also experience Trail Tales, which are self guided walking tours of our working waterfront.
- The Anacortes Arts Festival features over 250 diverse Booth Artisans who transform seven blocks of historic downtown. There are also three music stages, featuring musicians from Washington State – and beyond! Extending down to the water, Arts at the Port showcases northwest fine artists in three exhibitions. The Working Studios Area features artists demonstrating sculpture, wood-turning, weaving, painting and more.
Browse the selection of books at Pelican Bay Books, featuring a large selection of used & antiquarian books, featuring mysteries, science fiction, literature, nautical fiction and non-fiction, children’s books, art, cooking, Northwest history and others. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, they offer custom ordering. They also have a have a large, sunny deck and lots of comfy chairs to get lost in, plus free wi-fi!
Stroll downtown Anacortes and enjoy our First Friday Artwalk – it’s completely free, and happens every month – rain or shine! Multiple businesses along Commercial Avenue keep their doors open late, and invite guests in to view rotating art displays. You’ll find everything from oils, watercolors, acrylics and pastels to fiber art, stone and glass sculptures, mosaics, mixed media, and custom jewelry.