Click on the links below
to learn more
about the featured
San Juan Island
Enjoy taking it easy on the sandy seashore with one sunny day after another.
birch bay is the epitome of summer fun. The hot sun pouring down onto miles of sandy beach draws visitors from all over. Grab an ice cream cone or homemade candy at one of the cafes lining the beach and take a stroll, build a sandcastle or ride along Birch Bay Drive in a horse-drawn carriage.
The tree-lined bay is a hub of activity, with swimmers, joggers, bikers and beachcombers all gathering on the shore. Out on the bay, the protected, smooth waters make for great sailing, waterskiing and kayaking.
Rent a kayak, scooter or bicycle from Paddle & Pedal Adventures and go exploring. At the south end of the bay, Birch Bay State Park offers 194 acres of beaches, trees, trails and campgrounds. Call ahead to make camping reservations, especially on weekends.
The Terrell Creek Marsh is one of the last saltwater/freshwater estuaries in north Puget Sound. The park offers interpretive programs on various aspects of the local ecosystem. Nearby is also one of the state’s largest heron rookeries.
If you’re looking for a faster pace on the water, head to the Birch Bay Waterslides – the only water slide park between Seattle and B.C. The park’s half-dozen slides (along with its children’s area) are open Memorial Day through Labor Day.
After you cool off, unleash your kids and your own inner child by racing go-karts or playing a round of miniature golf at Miniature World just down the road from the waterslides.
Experience small-town Americana at its finest during Birch Bay’s annual Discovery Days. Held the third weekend in July, the festival brings you back to a simpler time. Discovery Days kicks off with a parade that begins at The C Shop on Alderson Road and rolls along the water down Birch Bay Drive to the Bay Center Market at Harborview Road. The parade is known for its creative and quirky floats entered by local businesses and organizations.
After the parade, head to the center of bay for the Discovery Days arts and crafts festival. Browse the booths for locally made handicrafts and enjoy a selection of tasty food from one of many local vendors.
The festival wouldn’t be the same without an annual Ducky Derby contest. How fast can your rubber duck float down Terrell Creek? Stop by during the festival and find out.
Cool off on a sunny afternoon and take a swim in the bay – no frigid waters in Birch Bay. Like Maple Beach in Point Roberts and Centennial Beach in Tsawwassen, the combination of expansive tide flats warmed by the sun followed by a slow incoming tide makes for warm swimming.
Here’s something interesting about the bay: Birch Bay gets approximately 25 percent less rain annually than Bellingham, just 20 miles away.
For more info, visit birchbaychamber.com.
Things to do in Birch Bay:
Build a Sandcastle: Try your hand in a sandcastle contest, and give your sandy creativity free rein. A little imagination goes a long way – create a sea monster, pirate ship, beach scene or whatever your mind dreams up.
Hit the Waves: Walk all the way out to the water’s edge at low tide. You’ll be amazed at how far you’ll get.
Get Riding: Pedal up Alderson Road to the rolling hills behind the water’s edge, or ride along the bay from Birch Bay State Park to Birch Bay Village.
Comb the Beach: Walk along the tide line and search out the curiosities that wash in with the tide. Look for interesting shells, sea glass, driftwood, pretty rocks and more.