If the ferry terminal in Anacortes is the gateway to the San Juan Islands then the Washington State Ferries are the road that leads you through. Ferry boats provide car and passenger transport to the four major islands of San Juan, Orcas, Lopez, and Shaw year.
Ferry travel gives the San Juan Islands a different pace and is a great place to unwind after long trips on the mainland. The journey through the islands, usually taking between thirty and forty minutes, shows off the natural beauty of the islands and provides many opportunities to observe local wildlife.
The Ferry sailing schedules change seasonally, with new schedule brochures becoming available between 10 and 14 days before the change. Current schedules can also be viewed online.
As of January 5, 2015 Washington State Ferries are incorporating a Reservation system for car transport from Anacortes to the San Juan Islands and from Orcas and San Juan Island to Anacortes. Reservations can be made up to two months in advance with a certain percentage of the car space being made available in tiers. Reservations can be purchased online at the WSDOT website or by phone at 1-888-808-7977 for Stateside callers and 206-464-6400 for callers from Out of State.
Reservation customers are giving priority in loading and can be changed until 5 pm of the day before the reservation’s sailing. It is requested that customers arrive between thirty and ninety minutes ahead of sailing time.
Travel fares change seasonally and vary among the different islands. All tickets purchased at Anacortes are Round Trip and fares are calculated based on the size of the vehicle and number of passangers. Detailed information on current ferry fares can be found here.
Washington State ferries are capable of accommodating very large vehicles; however any vehicles over 100 feet in length, over 13 feet in height, over 8 1/2 feet wide, or stenciled at more than 80,000 lbs. gross vehicle weight must make special travel arrangements by calling the customer service office at 1-888-808-7977 (in state) or 206-464-6400.
If you plan on traveling with firearms, propane tanks, or other potentially hazardous equipment make sure to check the rules and regulations detailing how and when these can be transported on the Washington State Ferries.
Ferry cameras also provide video feeds to the WSDOT website allowing travelers to observe the current conditions and ferry lines before their arrival.
Come to Anacortes and board a Washington State Ferry to the San Juan Islands and enjoy the beautiful Pacific Northwest today!