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San Juan Islands Biking Short Break

5 Days & 4 Nights 4.8 Read 4 reviews
  • Bike the highlights of Puget Sound's Lopez and San Juan Islands
  • Island hop by ferry in the Salish Sea
  • Watch for iconic Pacific Northwest wildlife: orcas, seals, otters & bald eagles
  • Taste local favorites, from hoppy craft beers to fresh oysters
  • Relax in boutique hand-picked inns on each island
Bike the highlights of the San Juan Islands over five days, complete with coastal views, indulgent country inns, views of local wildlife and lush rolling landscapes. Cycle at a relaxed pace with stays on San Juan and Orcas Island, each one with its own unique character. Check out a lavender farm or a winery and in the evenings you can treat yourself to the wonderful local seafood. Soak in the laidback vibes of this small archipelago in the Pacific Northwest with cycles to state parks, verdant forests, friendly fishing villages and sparkling coves.

What To Expect

This bike tour is rated as easy to moderate and includes day rides on San Juan and Orcas Islands, offering a glimpse into this areas landscapes and way of life. The routes offer coastal and rural riding, with rolling terrain. With 2 nights in each location you can relax and enjoy stays in your hand-picked inns whilst rewarding yourself with the amazing local seafood at the end of each day.

Trip Style:

Self Guided | Go at your own pace on an independent holiday.

Activity:

E-Biking, Multi Centre Cycling | E-Bikes with electronic motors to assist available to hire on this holiday (subject to availability), to make things easier, You will spend multiple nights in one or more location on this cycling holiday

This trip is suitable for:

Multi-Generational, First Timers

As a guide, we would suggest that the minimum age of traveller this holiday would be suitable for is: 16 Years

Ideal if you have an interest in:

  • Wildlife
  • Coastal & Island

Inspiration:

  • Most Popular

Grade & Terrain

This tour is rated easy to moderate and the routes follows a combination of coastal and rural roads, as well as busier roads entering and exiting towns. You should be comfortable sharing the road with other users and be considerate of traffic regulations.

Most of the riding is on rolling terrain at sea level, however it is definitely not flat and there will be short elevation gains and losses involved. The only significant sustained ascent is Mount Constitution, a ride from the coast to the summit at 2,400 feet (you can easily shorten this ride or take alternate activities available). Each day’s ride is flexible due to the nature of the island-hopping itinerary and circular routes. For those looking for a little extra assistance, e-bikes are available at a supplement (subject to availability). The distances and ascents/descent listed are approximations of the recommended routes.

Navigation

Navigating is easy using the Macs Adventure smartphone navigation app; where you will find detailed maps, turn-by-turn route notes and GPX tracks for each daily route. All daily routes with GPX tracks are available to download for use offline. 

Accommodation Information

Carefully-selected, charming, and characterful inns will be your home on the San Juan Islands. All offer a warm welcome to cyclists and will help make your stay smooth as well as memorable. 

Due to the lack of suitable accommodation on Orcas Island, you may be located elsewhere than Eastsound. Therefore please expect the the bike rides when not staying in Eastsound to be either longer or shorter than advertised. 

Single Rooms

This trip is priced based on two people sharing a room. If you would like separate rooms, a single supplement is required. The San Juan Islands are a welcoming place for solo travellers but because of high solo supplement costs we don't offer the trip for solo travellers.

Meals

Breakfast is included each morning. However, if you are staying at The Inn at Ship Bay in Eastsound or The Birdrock Hotel in Friday Harbor, they do not include breakfast for guests at these accommodations. There are places not too far away where you can either buy provisions, or find a cafe. The Inn at Ship Bay is 1.4 miles from the town centre of Eastsound so you will need to cycle there to find breakfast.

All inns serve a filling, fresh, and plentiful breakfast; some include a hot dish while others provide coffee, juice, yogurt, granola, fruit, and baked goods. 

Lunch and dinner are not included so you are free to choose from available nearby options. Depending on your timing it may be easier to pack a picnic lunch, while some days your route will offer dining options along the way. For dinner, be sure to sample some fresh seafood at nearby restaurants, ask your hosts for suggestions.

Included
  • 4 Nights in B&Bs/inns
  • 4 Breakfasts (except when staying at the Inn at Ship Bay or Bird Rock Hotel
  • Bike rental
  • Baggage transfers
  • Detailed Information Pack
  • Access to route notes, detailed maps, and GPS tracks in the Macs Adventure Smartphone Navigation app
  • 24/7 US telephone support
Excluded
  • Travel to Friday Harbour and from Orcas Island
  • Optional upgrade to a road or e-bike
  • Lunches, dinners, drinks & snacks
  • All ferries
  • Personal equipment
  • Travel insurance (required)
  • Possible $4 surcharge for taking bikes on ferries (but they do not always charge this)
Extras
  • Additional nights along the route
  • Upgrade to a road or e-bike

When To Go

This tour is available from May to October. You can start on any date subject to availability. The San Juan Islands are a popular destination with limited lodging capacity, so it is best to book as far in advance as you are able. The best months to visit the San Juan Islands are May to October. May, June, September and October will typically be less busy than July and August. Whale sightings are most common between May and September. 

Weather and Climate

Annually, the San Juan Islands boast 247 days of sun and about half the rainfall of Seattle due to the rain shadow created by the Olympic Mountains. Temperatures in the region are moderated by the Pacific Ocean and rarely rise above 70 degrees F or below 45 degrees F during our operating season, making it a perfect destination for an active adventure.

Getting to the Start

By Air:  We recommend flyin into and out of Seattle Tacoma International Airport (SEA) from were you can easily take a shuttle directly to/from Anacortes (2.5 hours). You may also choose to rent a car at SEA and drop it off when you reach Anacortes (1 hour 45 minutes) and vice versa after your tour.

Alternatively, you can fly into and out of Vancouver International Airport (YVR), from where you may choose to rent a car. Alternatively, there is train service from YVR via the Canada Line and Expo Line (30 minutes) connecting to the Amtrak Cascades from Vancouver to Bellingham (2 hours). There is also Greyhound bus service between Vancouver and Bellingham (2 hours 15 minutes). However, if you choose to train or bus from/to Vancouver, you will need to arrange a private transfer between Bellingham and Anacortes (45 minutes).

Getting from the End

The tour finishes at the Orcas Island Ferry Terminal, where you will drop and lock your bike. Your luggage will be taken to the ferry. You can check schedules for ferries that go from Orcas to Anacortes on the Washington State Department of Transportation. The journey time is approximately one hour.

Baggage Transfer

Your bags will be transferred from your accommodation as per your itinerary and moved onto your next overnight accommodation. We ask you to limit your luggage to one bag of up to 20 kg per person.

Equipment

Our pre-departure information pack has detailed advice on what to bring. Please be prepared by packing all necessary items, including rain gear, sunscreen, and appropriate cycling clothing, as the weather can vary greatly. If you have any questions, we would be happy to share our tips and advice.  Please limit your baggage to 1 bag per person of no more than 50 lbs / 20 kg. 

Bike Rental

Hire of a Trek 7.3 FX hybrid bike, helmet, lock, rear rack, waterproof bag, flat repair kit, water bottle cage, and bell are included in the trip cost. If desired, Specialized Rubaix carbon roadbikes are available for an additional charge. If you would like them, please provide your own clipless pedals, shoes, and saddle. These can be installed and adjusted for you upon arrival. Please supply us with your height for your bicycle rental so we can make sure you bike is the perfect fit. E-bikes are also available should you want a little extra assistance to help you along the way. These are subject to availability and require a supplementary payment.

Travel Insurance

Travel insurance helps protect your travel investment, your belongings and most importantly you, from unforeseen circumstances that may arise before or during your trip. For more information, please visit our travel insurance page.

What happens if I can’t cycle a stage?
What do I do if I become ill during my trip?
How do I get my rental bike?

Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive in Friday Harbor and overnight Day 2 San Juan Island Loop Ride 29 miles / 47 km Day 3 Ferry to Orcas Island, Ride to Eastsound via Deer Harbour 17 miles / 28 km Day 4 Ride to Moran State Park, optional ride up Mt. Constitution 14 miles / 23 km Day 5 Ride to Orcas Ferry Terminal. Ferry to Anacortes and onward travel 11 miles / 18 km

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