top of page

WOW! Getting Here is Really Half the Fun!

Washington State Ferries

1.  The Terminal which serves the San Juan’s is located in Anacortes 80 miles NW of Seattle (See Driving Routes Below)


2.  Washington State Ferries provide 5-6 sailings to Orcas Island each day, for walk-on and drive-on passengers. Note that each scheduled ferry may not visit every island so make sure you are in line for a ferry bound for Orcas Island


Washington State Ferry

3.  Ferry Schedules Change Seasonally Check Ferry Schedule -- find Anacortes to Orcas Route


4.  Reservations are Available for this Route and are Highly Recommended.  Make Reservations Now  .  

Choose GUEST USER.  Click on Anacortes to Orcas. 

Reservations are made available as follows: 

             30%  released 2 months prior to season schedule;

             30%  released 2 weeks prior to sailing;

             30%  released 2 days prior to sailing. 

             10%  reserved for Drive On customers

             **if reservation not available today, mark release dates on your calendar, wake early (for best times).

             **we suggest making any available reservation for your date of travel; changing a reservation is easier than                        making a reservation for the first time.  Check reservation site often,  Chances for making changes are good.


5.  Your ticket is good for a round trip — you only pay going westbound.


6.  If coming with car, we recommend you have your vehicle in the ferry line at least 60 minutes prior to scheduled sailing time and as much as 90 minutes prior to scheduled sailing time weekends, summer and holidays (even with reservation).


7.  Remember the time designated on the schedule is departure time.  Cars will be loaded 15-20 minutes prior to sailing.  (There is a walk on beach at the landing so you may want to calculate in time for exploring this pretty spot).


8.  Walk on passengers should be at the terminal about 30 minutes prior to departure time.

Seattle to Anacortes Map

From Bellinham Airport:  Follow I-5 South.  2-7 Same as above.

Driving Directions to Anacortes Ferry Landing

From Seattle or Sea-Tac (Most Direct Route)

  1. From Sea-Tac Airport or Seattle, Follow interstate I-5 North.

  2. Exit 230 and follow Highway 20 west to Anacortes.

  3. Once you are in Anacortes, take a left on 12th Street (Safeway market will be on the right)

  4. then follow the signs to the ferry terminal and ticketing booths (just 5 minutes away).

  5. Buy your ticket and tell them you want to go to ORCAS ISLAND

  6. Read a Good book, walk down to the beach (we recommend the walk to Ship's Harbor), nap.

  7. Enjoy the ferry ride -- it is worth the wait.



Alternate Scenic Route from Seattle (10 min longer) 

Although this route will take you about 10 minutes longer, your vacation will start hours earlier since his route will take you through some very calming bucolic scenery. 

1. Head north on I-5 N toward Exit 221

2. Take exit 221 for WA-534 E toward Lake McMurray (0.2 mi)

3. Turn left onto WA-534 W/​Pioneer Hwy. Follow Pioneer Hwy (0.3 mi)

4. Turn right onto Fir Island Rd (3.8 mi)

5. Turn right onto Browns Slough Rd/​Fir Island Rd (1.3 mi)

6. Turn left onto Best Rd (1.3 mi)

7. Slight left onto Rexville Grange Rd (121 ft),  continue straight onto Best Rd (5.1 mi)

8. Turn left onto State Route 20 W/​WA-20 W/​Memorial Hwy, follow 20 W/WA-20 (6.6 mi)

9.  Continue onto WA-20 Spur W (2.7 mi)

11. At the traffic circle, take the 1st exit onto Commercial Ave (1.3 mi)

12. Turn left onto 12th St (1.1 mi), Continue onto Oakes Ave (2.0 mi) and make a slight right onto Ferry Terminal Rd. (0.6 mi)

Shuttle and Bus Service


Bellair Airporter Shuttle provides daily bus service from SeaTac and downtown Seattle to the Anacortes ferry terminal, or 1-866-235-5247


Greyhound Bus Lines provides service from Seattle to Mt. Vernon. 800-231-2222 or 360-336-5111.  Once in Mt. Vernon you must transfer to the Skagit Transit bus system (360-757-4433). From the Greyhound Bus Terminal in Mt. Vernon catch the Number 208 bus to the Cascade Mall where you will transfer to the 410 route to the Anacortes ferry terminal (410 not available Saturday and Sunday)


Flying in on a Small Plane


Depending on the number in your party and the time you have to spend in the islands, this can be a relatively inexpensive option.  If you are of the ilk, "time is money," the flight to the islands is worth every dollar.  No driving, no waiting, and the birdseye views over the islands are priceless!.  Landing on the water with a Kenmore Float Plane or getting together to charter a flight with San Juan Airlines (sometimes, having the plane all to yourself--nice!)


Kenmore Air provides land and seaplanes, with daily direct, scheduled flights from Lake Union, Lake Washington, and Boeing Field/King County Airport. Visit Kenmore Air, 1-800-543-9595. They provide free shuttle service between SeaTac and their terminals.


San Juan Airlines provides daily scheduled flights from Bellingham and Anacortes1-800-874-4434.  They also have a fleet of planes for charter (3 passenger rates available).




Getting Here is Half the Fun

For Information on Travel from Victoria, BC; Vancouver BC; Port Townsend, and Environs: Go to Orcas Island Chamber of Commerce.  They have details and phone numbers and links. 


Call 360-376-2273



Have a Safe Journey.  We look forward to your visit!


bottom of page