Traveling Between Vancouver, Victoria, and the San Juans

Explore the Pacific Northwest

Whatever your route, include the San Juans in your journeys! Travel between the islands and Canada as you explore the great pacific northwest! 

From British Columbia, Canada to the San Juans

You can plan your trip to or from Vancouver or Victoria, British Columbia several different ways. The ferries run between Swartz Bay in Sidney and Friday Harbor. From there, you can take an interisland ferry to visit Orcas, Lopez and Shaw Islands.

Washington State Ferries at sunset, photo by @graceoarmstrong

From Vancouver, B. C. to Friday Harbor

Drive from Vancouver to Blaine to cross the border - about an hour and fifteen minute drive. Then, from Blaine, drive another hour and fifteen minutes to the Anacortes Ferry Terminal. From there, you can take the Washington State Ferries to Lopez, Orcas, Shaw or San Juan Island.

Ferry arriving in Friday Harbor, photo by @graceoarmstrong

From Vancouver to Victoria, B. C.

Drive from Vancouver to Tsawwassen (about an hour from downtown Vancouver) to catch the Tsawwassen ferry to Swartz Bay in Sidney BC on Vancouver Island. Then drive south to Victoria (about a 40-minute drive).  For more information, check out the B.C. Ferries website.

Twilight Ferry Ride by Brandon Fralic

From Victoria, B. C. to Friday Harbor

For an easy connection from Victoria (on Vancouver Island) to Friday Harbor on San Juan Island, drive or walk onto the Washington State ferry from Swartz Bay in Sidney, B.C., about a 30-minute drive north of Victoria. Ferries run one or two sailings per day from April to January; check the Washington State Ferries schedule for travel times and more information about how to make your trip go more smoothly. Vehicle reservations are recommended for ferry travel to and from Canada. You need a valid passport to travel between the U.S. and Canada.

Friday Harbor Ferry Landing by Barbara Marrett

From Victoria to Vancouver, B. C.

To travel between Victoria (on Vancouver Island) and the city of Vancouver (on the mainland), drive from Victoria north to Swartz Bay in Sidney (about a 40-minute drive) where you can get on the ferry to Tsawwassen. The Tsawwassen ferry landing is about an hour drive to or from downtown Vancouver. For more information, check out the B.C. Ferries website.

You can also take a charter flight on Kenmore Air, San Juan Airlines, Westwind Aviation, or San Juan Airlines.

Ferry under Spring Clouds - Lisette Wolter-McKinley

Pacific Northwest Loop / Olympic Peninsula

If you’d like to enjoy several days on the Olympic Peninsula and the islands, consider taking your car onto the Black Ball Ferry Line that runs from Victoria, B.C. to Port Angeles, Washington. From there, a scenic 47-mile drive east takes you to the historic town of Port Townsend, where you can catch a Washington State ferry to Coupeville on Whidbey Island. From Coupeville, drive north about 35 miles up Whidbey Island and over beautiful Deception Pass to Anacortes, where you can catch a Washington State Ferry to the San Juan Islands.

Ferry riders gaze at Turtleback Mountain by Robert Demar
Kayaking to Stuart Island by Dana Halferty

What To Do

Find a variety of activities and experiences in the islands