Kiwanis Waterfront Park
On the west side of the ferry that connects Anacortes with Guemes Island you will find this small park with a small beach, a picnic table, a short paved pathway, and a few other amenities. From the west end of the park it is possible to get a decent view of the foothills of the Cascades. This view will be partly blocked soon due to the construction of a new ferry terminal building.
The beach is mostly sea gravel rather than sand.
Getting Here: From downtown Anacortes, go west on 6th Street to I Avenue. The park is located on the west side of the road to the ferry.
Assorted Preserved Older Buildings
If you get off the beaten path in Anacortes, you will find that a number of the older houses near the downtown core have been well preserved, including all the intricate woodwork on many of them.
The bulk of these houses are close to the center of the commercial district, but away from the commercial center. For example, a walk through the area west of Commercial Avenue and north of 8th Street should yield quite a few older homes still in their original delicate woodwork and well maintained.
Gateway to the San Juans
"Outdoor activities galore!"
Anacortes is a small town situated about 2 hours north of Seattle on Fidalgo Island. The easiest way to get there is taking I-5 until you get to Mt Vernon or Burlington and go west from there. Once you pass over the bridge, the Swinimish Northern Lights Casino will greet you. The town of Anacortes is located another 4 miles from there. There are many parks in wich to hike in, boats to take out for fishing or for whale watching, kayak rentals, scuba diving, or the downtown are to walk around. The ferry system also leaves from the west end of the island for the San Juans and for Victoria, Canada. There are a lot of places to go to and lots of things to see. It's a very nice place to visit!
Colors of Tulips at the Base of the Mountains
"Photos from the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival, 2010"
The entire month of April is devoted to the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival. The entire festival is spread out over quite an extensive area west of Interstate 5 and south of highway 20. As the highway interchange most people are advised to use to get to the festival is the Anacortes exit off of Interstate 5, I have put my Skagit Valley Tulip Festival tip in Anacortes.
All of these photos were taken on April 10, 2010.
Skagit Valley Tulip Festival colors in the shadow of Mount Baker.
People wandering the tulip fields during the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival, which I have placed in my Anacortes section (though the tulip festival is actually mostly between Anacortes and Interstate 5).
Tickets that allow you to visit any of a number of tulip farms were available for $4, and unofficial parking fields were available cheaper. However, those unofficial parking areas do not allow people to visit multiple locations.
During the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival we visited one farm that allowed people to wander freely to other farms through the tractor trails, allowing a much more pleasant experience than would have happened if we attempted to drive from one place to another. Traffic was very heavy by late morning.
The local sheriff and other law enforcement officers like to keep the traffic through the area moving as well as possible, as things can certainly get a bit congested with all the people visiting these narrow rural roads.
So, during the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival it is best to not park in locations that block traffic or otherwise represent a hazard. They do patrol the area and will give you a "gift" if you park in a way that represents a problem to traffic.
During your visit to the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival be sure to take a close look at the details of some of the flowers. Some of them are multiple colors.
The tulip farmers do not want people to wander up and down the rows of flowers during the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival. Instead, you are asked to stay on the larger, wider tractor routes.
You will probably want to bring shoes that are good in mud, or at least you don't mind getting a bit muddy.
Look closely at the tulips, and you will find that sometimes they change color as they open up. For example, you will notice that these have a bit more yellow on them when they are still somewhat closed. Note the two in the left foreground, and one on the left middle edge.
You will find the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival has quite a splash of color, even on the microscopic scale.