HOUSE AND CABINS

Activities & Attractions

Whidbey Island, located in northern Puget Sound, is the 5th longest and largest island in the continental US. It is a nature lover’s dream with sandy beaches, tall fir trees, abundant birdlife, and great fishing. Whidbey Island lies in the rain shadow of the Olympic Mountain Range, so receives about 35% less rain than Seattle on average. Recreation options are many- golfing, hiking, tennis, biking. South Whidbey has wonderful shopping opportunities- from cute tourist town Coupeville with its many antique shops, to Langley with its many art galleries, great restaurants, and fun shopping, to Freeland, the business hub of the South End. Greenbank Farm is a 522 acre farm which is now a major tourist destination and the host of many yearly festivals, with restaurant, wine tasting bar, and duck pond. The mostly highly prized real estate is generally on the west-facing beaches of the South End. Here, the sun sets nightly over the Olympic Mountains with Admiralty Inlet in the foreground, and freighters and submarines share the same waterway as salmon, whales, and porpoises. The Mukilteo-Clinton ferry is an easy 15 minute crossing, running every ½ hour on the hour, connecting South Whidbey with the mainland. From there it is less than 45 minutes to Seattle. North Whidbey is connected to the mainland by a bridge over Deception Pass, itself a world-class destination that draws tourists from around the world.

Hiking and Walking. A magical 2-5 mile loop trail from the house transitions from unspoiled sandy beaches to majestic old growth forests and back. Be sure not to miss the huge 600 year old Ancient cedar tree, the largest of many old growth firs and cedars visible in the north part of the trail through the neighboring State Park. Ebey’s Landing in the Coupeville area, offers a 2-3 mile hike that is just stunning. From the Ebey’s Landing parking lot, traverse the hillside and return along the beach. Much of this area was recently acquired by the Nature Conservancy.

Shore Fishing. Our sandy beach is one of Puget Sound’s premier locations for surf-casting directly from the beach. Cast your line and experience the thrill of catching salmon, steelhead, or cutthroat for the evening’s meal. Put out your crab pot and feast on Dungeness crab.

Beachcombing. You can go north or south on the sandy beach at almost any tide. There is a tide calendar in the kitchen. At low tides, we have seen some people digging giant horse clams (good for chowder) and geoducks (pronounced gooeyducks). There are also crabs in the eelgrass. Try looking for beachglass.

Bird Watching. Bushnell binoculars are available for your use in the beach cabin and main house. Our library contains bird guidebooks as well. Watch for eagles and osprey in the morning. Red-winged blackbirds, goldfinches, hummingbirds, great horned owls, have been recently seen.

Cycling. Whidbey Island has some of the best biking roads in Washington State. As zealous cyclists ourselves, the property’s location providing great riding both north and south of the house was one of the attractions for us. There is a great bike shop in Bayview Corner. You’ll find bike maps in the welcome binder.

Art Walks. Langley is a must for art-lovers. Wonderful galleries, especially Museo, and several antique shops . About a 20 minute drive from the house.

Driving Tours. Ebey’s Landing: much of this area was recently acquired by a consortium including the Nature Conservancy. This is truly one of the most beautiful areas in the country. Rolling meadows, beautiful farmlands, and great trails along the bluff. Deception Pass: a world class destination- if you are visiting for a week, make sure to plan a drive to the north end of Whidbey. Continue north to Deception Pass, truly an area of world-class beauty!

Tour Port Townsend. Park the car at the Keystone ferry landing, just 15 minutes to the north, walk on, and take a 35 minute ferry ride to Port Townsend. Port Townsend is an historic Washington town with old Victorian gingerbread houses, great shopping, good pubs, and nice restaurants, all within easy walking distance from the ferry dock. There is a ferry schedule in the welcome binder.

Golf. There are several excellent courses on Whidbey. Holmes Harbor Golf is an 18 hole golf course is open year round to the public, located at 5023 Harbor Hills Drive in Freeland. Call 1-(360)-331-2363. Useless Bay Country Club is an 18-hole private golf course is at 5725 S. Country club Drive in Langley. Call 1 (360)321-5960 Shopping in Coupeville.

Weekend Farmers Markets. Starting late spring, there are 2 wonderful outdoor farmers markets in Bayview on Saturday mornings starting at 10am, about a 15 minute drive. There is also a farmers market at Greenbank Farm on Sundays.

Winery Touring. There are now 8 wineries on Whidbey Island, including these which also have their own tasting rooms: Whidbey Island Vineyards and Winery Langley 360 221-2040, Holmes Harbor Cellars 360 331 3544, Greenbank Cellars 360 678-3964, Swede Hill Cellars 206200 1728. Greenbank Farm, a five minute drive away, is a one stop shop for local wineries and offers daily wine tasting. The 522 acre farm includes and duck pond and art galleries, cheese shop, and café that specializes in pies.

Garden Touring. If you are a gardener, and especially a rhododendron lover, don’t miss Meerkerk Gardens, just 10 minutes away on Resort Road, just off the main highway. The gardens are open 7 days a week 9am to 4pm. Admission is $3 per person.

Kayaking. Whidbey Island Kayaking Company (www.whidbeyislandkayaking.com or 360 321 4683) runs 2 hour guided tours daily from Freeland and other locations around Whidbey, with all equipment supplied. You can also talk with them regarding renting kayaks to keep down at our beach during your stay.

Antiquing and Shopping. Coupeville is a quaint seaside town just 20 minutes away. Don’t miss the bakery goods at the Knead and Feed, mussels at Toby’s, and my favorite women’s clothing boutique at the north end of the village. Langley is great for shopping and well. For provisioning, a excellent supermarket with great produce and gourmet ingredients is found in Freeland, just 10 minutes away.

Kid Friendly. Make a beach fort. Skip stones. Hop from log to log in the lagoon. Play a game of softball, Frisbee, volleyball, Bocce ball or badminton on the huge lawn. Fly a kite. Make pottery from clay in the bluffs to the south. Equipment for all the above is in the beach cabin basement. This really is so much for kids to do here! For indoor activities, play Wii or read from our extensive children’s and adult library. The need to watch TV will magically disappear. And if not, satellite TV and DVDs are provided as well.