Island Experience

Plan your perfect wedding in the San Juan Islands

Dream big - or small - the island welcomes you on your special day

The stunning beauty of the San Juan Islands is an amazing backdrop for storybook weddings. But you also want your special day to be a personal, intimate experience with family and friends, whether you envision just a few witnessing your union on a quiet beach, or a hundred guests from all over the country dancing the night away. The San Juan Islands have the services you'll need—captivating venues, professional planners, caterers, florists, decorators, rentals, photographers, officiates, rehearsal dinner locations, accommodations and more—to fit any budget. 

Planning your venue: Let the guest list be your guide

The historic grandeur of Roche Harbor Resort on San Juan Island, or Rosario Resort and Spa on Orcas Island are unmatched as venues for large weddings. A few venues accommodate larger parties - a lakeside wedding for up to 500 at Lakedale Resort, or a ceremony and reception in a glorious field of lavender at Pelindaba Lavender Farm. The Outlook Inn in the waterfront village of Eastsound on Orcas Island accommodates up to 300 in their delightful garden. And there are so many other unique venues: consider a sunset ceremony in the Lime Kiln Point Lighthouse, or a candlelight ceremony and dinner on the rocky bluffs overlooking the water at Doe Bay Resort & Retreat.

If your day will be an intimate affair with less than 50, think about a picturesque farmhouse such as Turtleback Farm Inn on Orcas, an inn such as Edenwild Boutique Inn on Lopez Island, or The Bluff at Friday Harbor House. If you want an inside venue, some beautiful options are the Lopez Center for Community and the Arts, the Odd Fellows Hall (which also has a lovely outdoor patio overlooking Eastsound), Random Howse in Eastsound, or Brickworks on San Juan Island, all with full kitchens. Explore other options by venue size on our Wedding Venues page.

Planning the food: Keep it simple and delicious

Island chefs, caterers and restaurateurs have access to some of the freshest seafood, produce, meats and cheeses available, and combine them in amazing ways. Consider fresh oysters from Westcott Bay Shellfish on San Juan Island or Buck Bay Shellfish on Orcas Island for an oyster bar. And a salad of greens so fresh they taste alive, decorated with edible flower petals. Many island restaurants cater for weddings, simplifying their restaurant dishes into a wedding buffet featuring wild-caught salmon, Island Grown lamb, pork or beef, and luscious cakes and desserts made with fruit from heritage orchards. Check out our list of caterers and other wedding services.

Planning for flowers: Keep it natural

There are so many farmers that grow fresh flowers on Lopez, Orcas and San Juan Islands that it isn’t necessary to hire a florist from off island. In the summer, you can find flowers at the farmer’s markets or farm stands. In late summer, stop by New Day Garden just outside of Friday Harbor, to pick some of the most beautiful dahlias you’ve ever seen.

Planning activities: Get Wild

Choose from wildlife tours, hiking trails, kayak expeditions, boat charters and more to help your guests and bridal party explore the islands. You've chosen an exciting and unique destination for your wedding  - why not spend time enjoying it!? Choose the island experience you want for your special day and savor every moment of your time in the San Juans.   

Planning travel: Planes, ferries and automobiles

With a little planning, you’d be surprised how easy it can be to help all your guests make it to the islands. Some relatives might love to coordinate a trip to the islands alongside a few days of vacation for themselves; some friends might welcome a much needed girls’ getaway or romantic weekend away. A breathtaking aerial view of the islands aboard a Kenmore Air flight add a fairy tale backdrop to your wedding or honeymoon.

You can now make a reservation for ferry travel a full two to five months in advance, so you won’t have to worry about all your guests missing the ferry at the last minute. And if you have a van or two waiting in Friday Harbor, guests can drive and park at the Anacortes ferry terminal, then walk onto the ferry, saving your guests time and money. This can work for small or larger parties, depending on the location of your venue. To keep your travel stress free, car rentals, shuttles and taxis are available on Orcas, Lopez and San Juan Islands.

Planning an island-hopping honeymoon: It’s about the two of you

After the wedding, you may never want to leave the islands. Luckily, you can get married on one island, and zip away with your sweetheart to another island to a honeymoon hideaway. For instance, if you have a grand wedding at Roche Harbor on San Juan, or Rosario on Orcas, consider taking a jaunt to Lopez Island to hike the remote and beautiful Spencer Spit State Park or Shark Reef Sanctuary, then enjoy a gourmet dinner in Lopez Village. If you have a wedding on San Juan, consider taking a honeymoon on Orcas, where you can hike around Mountain Lake in Moran State Park, go kayaking in a quiet cove and then enjoy gourmet food, tasty cocktails and great music at some of the island’s excellent restaurants. After a quiet ceremony on Lopez Island, a San Juan Island honeymoon can offer an opportunity to visit the National Historical Parks, shopping for that special piece of art at some of Friday Harbor’s art galleries.