Orcas Island is the largest within the archipelago of the San Juan Islands, up in the far north-western corner of Washington State, in the north-west of the United States of America. Obviously, Orca means killer whale and this is what this island has been named after as these mammalian sea monsters are often spotted in this part of the world. If you love the idea of being in a very quiet part of America, somewhere that is far removed from the usual choice of destinations for a break, then you are going to love spending your holidays on Orcas Island. There is a great choice in the way of self catering accommodation here for you too.
There really is a huge range of activities to keep you thoroughly entertained during your holidays on Orcas Island. Of course, being such a large island, there are plenty of miles worth of beaches and this is where you can get involved in activities such as safe swimming, snorkelling, scuba diving, surfing, wind surfing, jet skiing and fishing (including deep-sea excursions). The island itself is very green and beautiful and there is a great chance of seeing the very best of the San Juan Islands if you travel to The Moran State Park: here you can enjoy some idyllic nature walks which are likely to include glimpses of waterfalls and picturesque lakes.
Whilst enjoying your holidays on Orcas Island, there are a couple of places that are recommended for you to visit in addition to and even within the beautiful Moran State Park. Mount Constitution is actually the highest point in all of the San Juan Islands and this is on Orcas Island and found within the boundaries of Moran State Park. There are a couple of interesting museums for you to visit and these should help you to better understand the history of the San Juan Islands: these are The Lambiel Museum and The Orcas Island Historical Museum. Bear in mind that The Washington State Ferries connect Orcas island with the mainland of Washington State and other San Juan Islands if you fancy venturing a little further afield for the day.
You may be surprised to learn that even though your holidays on Orcas Island will be spent so far north, right next to the border with Canada, the weather should not be too extreme. In fact, it can be much milder here than on the mainland. Expect average temperatures between 6 and 10 degrees during the winter and these will rise to around the mid-twenties during the summer. Rainfall is actually quite high in this part of the US, but relatively evenly spread throughout the year.
First and foremost for your holidays on Orcas Island, you will need to make note of the fact that there is a ferry between Anacortes on the mainland and the island and this runs frequently for you to make your way to and from the airport at Seattle-Tacoma (SEA). British Airways appear to be the only company operating direct flights to and from the UK and this service departs from London Heathrow (LHR).