Guemes Island is a small island in western Skagit County, Washington. Guemes Island is north of Anacortes and part of the San Juan Island archipelago and is accessible by both private boat and a passenger ferry (see the map in photos below).The island was named after the Viceroy of New Spain, Juan Vicente de Guemes, who commissioned an expedition that “discovered” the islands in 1791.
To access Guemes Island there is a county ferry that departs from 6th and I Avenue in downtown Anacortes. It only takes 8 minutes to cross the Guemes Channel and dock. Your commute is easy as the ferry runs 7 days a week all day and into the evenings. (Scroll down to see the Ferry Cam)
Guemes Island has a rural character and is one of the least known of the inhabited San Juan Islands. For a few bucks, you can catch a five-minute ferry ride 30 years back in time, to an island where most people wave at everyone they pass, where you can wander the beach without treading on anyone’s personal space.
Along the shore are beach cottages and custom waterfront homes and there are miles of beaches to walk and enjoy. You can bicycle from any point on the island to another in less than an hour, through lanes of maples, past pastures of cows and sheep, and along windswept shores.
The interior of the island is forestland, pastures with hedgerows of wild roses and homes with acreage. The islanders are friendly and there are many activities throughout the year that give residents a chance to get together.