Cycling Washington's San Juan Islands

Anacortes, Washington

Explore the Islands by Bicycle

Start Date

October 1, 2020

End Date

October 5, 2020




The San Juan Islands offer some of Washington's most stunning scenery, along with a perfect introduction to multi-day bicycling. On this trip, we'll pedal across three islands, connected both by bridge and ferry, through quaint towns and along scenic stretches of waterfront beaches. This is a moderate trip with 120 miles of cycling spread over 4 days; the shortest day will be just 5 miles, and the longest 40 miles. Each of the 4 nights, we'll sleep in comfortable bed and breakfast accommodations, with plenty of time to explore the surrounding areas. This isthe perfect trip for both someone interested in dipping their toes into cycling, as well as more experienced riders looking for a more relaxed tour

We'll provide everything you need on this guided trip, including your rental bicycle. Check out "What We'll Do" for a comprehensive, day by day itinerary. We'll see you in Anacortes!

Day 1: Arrive to Seattle's SeaTac airport anytime before 3pm and take a shuttle to Anacortes, approximately 2.5 hours away and the jumping off point for our trip. In the late afternoon and evening, we'll go over our bikes together, then gather for a communal dinner at a local restaurant before tucking in for our first night of sleep.

Day 2: The Anacortes ferry terminal and the official start of our ride are just a short hop away. The 45 minute boat trip is a great first chance to take in the beauty of the Pacific Northwest as we travel from Fidalgo Island to Lopez Island. Upon reaching “The Friendly Isle”, it's a quick 20 minute ride to our accommodation, leaving ample time to explore, including a jaunt out to Fisherman Bay Preserve.

Ride distance: 18 miles / 29 km

Ascent/Descent:  600 ft / 185 m

Day 3: In the morning, we'll return to the ferry dock for the next stop on our PNW adventure: Orcas Island. We'll pass through the quaint town of Eastsound, tonight's stopping point. After a quick break, it's a gradual ascent into the hills of Moran State Park. This is the big climb of the trip, through old-growth fir, spruce, and cedar forests all the way to the summit of Mount Constitution, standing tall at 2400 feet of elevation. From here, the vistas on a clear day extend all the way to the glacier-capped North Cascades. We'll take a well-deserved long break to explore the stone watch tower, constructed during the Great Depression by the Civilian Conservation Corps before heading back down to Eastsound with plenty of time to relax before dinner.

Not interested in this climb up to the summit? For a less rigorous day 3, you're welcome to park the bicycle in Moran State Park for a walk on one of the many winding trails, which makes for a great combo with exploration of the art galleries around town. As an alternative to this heart-thumping ride, enjoy a walk along one of Moran State Park’s many winding trails, opt for a free afternoon in Eastsound to visit the eclectic art galleries and museum.

Ride distance: 34 miles / 55 kilometers

Ascent/Descent: 2400 feet / 730 meters

Day 4: Our biggest day awaits, with 40 miles of gently rolling hills and ocean vistas. We'll start the morning with a ride across Orcas Island to the ferry dock. From there, it's a short ride to our final destination: San Juan Island, the second largest and most populous in the archipelago. Our last stop is widely recognized as the most picturesque, and there will be plenty to keep our attention as we do a lap around the island. From romps through fields of lavender to visiting an alpaca ranch to tasting delicious wine in expansive vineyards, we'll have the entire day to explore. Throughout, we'll keep eye out for orcas, especially from Lime Kiln  Point State Park. Our last night is spent in Friday Harbor, the lovely one square mile hub of San Juan Island and the perfect place to celebrate our hard work and the end of the trip.

Ride distance: 40 miles / 64 kilometers

Ascent/Descent: 2000 feet / 610 meters

Day 5: Our last day together is a choose your own adventure - head back on the ferry to Anacortes in the morning, or take additional time to explore other parts of the island by bicycle.

What’s Included:

  • An experienced guide to lead the trip
  • A rental hybrid bicycle
  • Accommodation at comfortable local bed and breakfasts (double occupancy, ie, you’ll be sharing a room with someone of the same gender). Interested in your own room for a small additional fee? Just ask.
  • 3 dinners, 4 breakfasts, 2 lunches
  • Awesome free gear from our partners, for you to test and take home

Not included:

  • Airfare to SeaTac Airport
  • transport to/from the airport in Seattle to Anacortes
  • 1 dinner, 2 lunches (so you'll have time to explore on your own, if you'd like)
  • alcohol and soft drinks
  • accommodation before or after the trip starts and ends

Bolt's trips are only available to members of the community who have gone through our Discovery Process and invested in our community. Learn more:

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