3 Ways to Become an Island Insider at Friday Harbor, Washington

The San Juan Islands have become a national protected gem with its recent honor as a National Monument by President Barack Obama. And while the beloved island is enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of tourists each year, it is home to some 8,000 year-round residents who see it through different eyes.

And it is a rare opportunity that tourists can feel like local islanders—until now.

This summer and fall, Friday Harbor House will offer three unique experiences that enable guests to become locals for a weekend. These exclusive insider adventures have leveraged the hotel’s relationships to provide insider access for guests to see, smell and eat their way through San Juan Island:

Smell an aromatic adventure at Pelindaba Lavender Farm.

  • Behind the Scenes with Pelindaba Lavender Farm – take an aromatic adventure to Friday Harbor’s infamous Pelindaba Lavender Farm. Guests will enjoy a complimentary gourmet picnic and signature tote bag as they spend their day at the farm with owner and founder Stephen Robbins. The visit includes harvesting a bouquet in the cutting field and creating a keepsake at the craft workshop. Guests will end the day with house-made lavender-infused ricotta cheese, crackers and wine in their hotel room.  
  • Valid thru Oct. 31, 2013, rates start from $359 per night.

See island scenery and sea life through a camera lens on a water-photography excursion with Captain Jim Maya of Maya’s Westside Whale Watch Charter.

  • Zoom In On the San Juan Islands – experience the San Juan waters with whale watcher and photographer extraordinaire Captain Jim Maya, as he offers Friday Harbor House guests an exclusive on-the-water photography experience. For a novice or veteran photographer, Captain Maya will pair his expertise and tips while lending endless opportunities for capturing the scenery and sea life aboard his Maya’s Westside Whale Watch Charter out of Snug Harbor. 
  • Valid thru Sept. 20, 2013, rates start from $599 per night

Eat local and forage ingredients for dinner from local Sweet Earth Farm with Chef Aaron Rock.

  • Friday Harbor Foraging with Chef Aaron Rock – eat like a local in Friday Harbor and spend the day at multi-generational family farm Sweet Earth Farm with Chef Aaron Rock. This seed to table experience will educate guests on how to forage the best picks straight from the ground, and held hand-select ingredients for that night’s special at the Bluff Restaurant. 
  • Valid thru Sept. 20, 2013, rates start from $419 per night

Written by Charles Koh

Founded EatSeattle, and has continued to use his expertise as editor-in-chief to guide the website’s growth over the last five years. Koh’s experience focuses on digital marketing and social media, and has been a part of several companies, some of which he created, specializing in both areas over the course of his career. Koh was previously with Google and Zagat where he helped expand and grow communities worldwide.

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