See Washington's newest Scenic Byway... with or without your car!
The San Juan Islands Scenic Byway was designated by Washington State in April 2009 for its natural beauty and historical significance. Winding along stunning coastline, through dense forest and picturesque farmland, the Scenic Byway is divided into three segments: the first one-third encompasses 30 miles along the beautiful, blue marine highway (Washington State Ferries routes), the second one-third is a driving tour around San Juan Island, and the last third is a driving tour on Orcas Island. There are several ways you can learn about tour stops, including downloading the Scenic Byway Map, or through out driving and cycling tours: San Juan Island Scenic Byway (South and West), San Juan Island Scenic Byway (North), and the Orcas Island Scenic Byway Driving Tour.
Our new Washington State Scenic Byway is overflowing with natural beauty, history, arts and culture. While Lopez Island is on the marine highway route, it is not part of the official Scenic Byway. However, it has many beautiful areas to explore as well; you can explore with the online Lopez Island Cycling and Driving Tour.
Learn more about the Scenic Byway by watching three videos on our YouTube channel.
Travel the Byway without your car!
We invite you to leave your car behind and join us in paradise! Tour the San Juan Islands Scenic Byway aboard our local seasonal shuttle bus, by bike, moped, scootcar, taxi or rental car. Plus, if you come without your car you can use your Chinook Book 2-for-1 walk-on passenger pass on Washington State Ferries and save even more!
Here are several car-free ways to explore our Byway:
- SHUTTLE BUS – San Juan Transit runs a seasonal shuttle bus along the San Juan Island byway route. You’ll find the schedule here. Wheelchairs are welcome, just call (360) 378-8887 in advance to ensure your particular needs can be addressed. The shuttle originates in Friday Harbor on San Juan Island near the ferry landing, and runs from about mid-May to mid-September. Stay tuned as to whether or not Orcas Island will also have a seasonal shuttle.
- BICYCLE – Bring your own bikes, or rent them on Orcas or San Juan Island. Some lodgings provide complimentary bikes. Please note that there are no designated bike trails or paths on the islands, so please be prepared to share the road!
- MOPED, SCOOTCAR, TAXI or RENTAL CAR – You’ll find rentals and taxis on both San Juan and Orcas Islands. Mopeds and scootcars are seasonal. Call ahead to reserve your favorite mode of transportation.
- RIDESHARE – Hitchhiking is legal in San Juan County. Look for the sjRIDESHARE signs along the road and on the ferry to safely connect with people willing to share a ride.
- FREE PARKING – You can pay to park at the Washington State Ferries Terminal in Anacortes, or you’ll find free overnight parking at the Port of Anacortes near their marina in Cap Sante Boat Haven. Park your car, unload your bikes, and ride less than four miles to the ferry terminal. Or you can catch SKAT (Skagit Transit) to the ferry terminal Monday through Saturday.
- Visit the Puget Sound Trip Planner for assistance in making car-less connections between public and private transit providers throughout Puget Sound.
“Like” our Facebook page!
Follow our San Juan Islands Scenic Byway Explorer page to see what’s happening on the Byway. “Like” our page to receive up-to-date news, events and sightings. Send us your favorite photo (at least 400 pixels wide) from the Byway and we may post it!
Interested in the details of the Byway? Check out our Corridor Management Plan online or find a copy at the Lopez, Orcas or San Juan libraries. Also find it here.