E.g., 2017-08-20

Guest Blog - Finding the Extraordinary

We hope you enjoy this article by our guest blogger, Lisette Wolter-McKinley

 

When we want to feel like we have gotten away from it all without traveling too far or spending too much money we like to visit the San Juan Islands. Last weekend we spent a lovely long weekend on San Juan Island. We stayed at one of our favorite places, the Bird Rock Hotel and enjoyed beautiful weather (most of the time) scenic views from our bed and all the charm the island has to offer like no traffic and honor system roadside flower stands. 

Bird Rock Hotel in Friday Harbor  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

Bird Rock Hotel is located a short walk from the ferry terminal so if you don't want the hassle of having a car you can easily walk on the ferry and enjoy a carless weekend. However, some of the most beautiful parts of the island are best accessed by car so I would highly recommend either renting a moped or car for one day if you decide not to bring your own. 

Friday Harbor Washington  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

Sailing, kayaking and whale watching are just a few of the fun things you can do while on San Juan Island. 

Bird Rock Hotel Friday Harbor Washington  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Bird Rock Hotel Friday Harbor Washington  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

Spring is such a beautiful time of year to travel. The flowers and trees are in bloom and the temperature is usually somewhere between nice and perfection. 

Cute Flowers at the Bird Rock Hotel on San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Comfy bed at the Bird Rock Hotel in Friday Harbor  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

At Bird Rock Hotel we stayed in their most popular room; the San Juan room which has a king bed, a harbor view, a full kitchen, private patio, aerated tub and shower. 

Bird Rock Hotel San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
View from the Bird Rock Hotel in Friday Harbor  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

One of the most thrilling parts of our stay was watching the ferry boats and seaplanes come and go from our bed. It does not matter how long I live here I will never tire of these gorgeous sights. If I could, I would happily take up permanent residency in this room.

Room with kitchen at the Bird Rock Friday Harbor Hotel  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

When you have a little one it is always a welcome bonus to have a kitchen. Although we did not cook any meals in here, it gave us peace of mind to know if Jasper was too tired or cranky to go out to eat we could. Bird Rock Hotel offers a wonderful breakfast in the morning and lemonade and cookies in the afternoon. 

Bird Rock Hotel Friday Harbor Washington  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Comfy beds at the Bird Rock Friday Harbor Hotel  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Lovely bathroom and amenities at San Juan Island's Bird Rock Hotel  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Boutique Bird Rock Hotel Friday Harbor, Washington  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
View from Friday Harbor's Bird Rock Hotel  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Harbor view from Friday Harbor's Bird Rock Hotel  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

The view we enjoyed from our patio each morning as we ate breakfast and lounged around. 

Roof top patio at the Bird Rock Hotel in Friday Harbor Washington  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Bird Rock Hotel San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Complimentary Beach Cruisers at Friday Harbor's Bird Rock Hotel  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

Bird Rock Hotel offers complimentary bike rentals. 

Beautiful San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Playing with bugs and wildflowers on San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

One of our favorite little spots on the island in San Juan Park. There is a small beach, a short hiking trail and plenty of beautiful views to enjoy. On this particular afternoon we picked buttercups, examined bugs and enjoyed the warm sunshine on our face. Having children is the opportunity to relive your own childhood again and I am loving every second of getting dirty and not worrying about how my wind blown hair looks or whether or not I remembered to put on mascara. Jasper loves me for me and his love has taught me to show a greater love and acceptance for myself. 

Lot's of fun things to do for kids on San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Creative sign on San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
San Juan Island's beaches are perfect for long walks and beach combing  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Flowers for sale on San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
American Camp National Park San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

Walking the bluff at Cattle Point. 

Fresh flowers at San Juan Island's Bird Rock Hotel  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Sunny common balcony at Bird Rock Hotel Friday Harbor Washington  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Complimentary breakfast at the Bird Rock Hotel in Friday Harbor, Washington  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

As part of your stay Bird Rock Hotel they offer a delicious breakfast buffet each morning. Maybe it is just me, but there is something inherently relaxing about knowing your first meal of the day is already figured out. One of my least favorite things to do when we are on vacation is search high and low for a healthy breakfast each morning. Since we aren't big fans of starting the day with a heavy breakfast, scones, yogurt, fresh fruit and orange juice is more than enough to satisfy us.

Suite at the Bird Rock Hotel San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Tasty complimentary breakfast at Bird Rock Friday Harbor Hotel  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

This face says it all. He is one happy camper. 

San Juan Island is super kid friendly  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Complimentary fresh tasty breakfast at the Bird Rock Hotel San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
View from Friday Harbor's Bird Rock Hotel  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Complimentary beach cruiser bikes at the Bird Rock Hotel in Friday Harbor  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

Saturday morning we took a short stroll to the farmer's market to pick up some tomato plants for our garden and anything else which caught our eye. 

Spring at San Juan Island's Saturday Farmer's Market  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Local oysters at San Juan Island's Farmer's Market  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Bring your kids to Friday Harbor's Farmer's Market  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
San Juan Island Farmer's Market  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Bookstore in Friday Harbor Washington  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Yummy Fish and Chips in Friday Harbor Washington  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

Fish and chips is a staple in our house. We all love it, so it is the perfect thing to share when we are out and about. 

Driftwood fort on South Beach San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

No matter how much time we spend at the beach at home, it always calls our name. Jasper could literally spend hours upon hours throwing rocks, lining up sticks and playing in the sand. There are so many beaches to choose from, but South Beach is one of favorites. 

Beach combing on South Beach San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
View at the Bird Rock Hotel in Friday Harbor Washington  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

Bird Rock Hotel is the perfect spot for a romantic getaway or a family adventure. Traveling with kids requires patience, flexibility and excellent planning, so it was nice to know while Jasper napped we could enjoy warm cookies and lemonade or revel in the peace and quiet of the hotel. Time and time again I am reminded it is the kindest of strangers which motivates us to travel and share the world with our son. I want him to feel like he does not need a room full of toys to be happy and that he can make friends, have good experiences and feel at home wherever he goes. In all our traveling it is boutique hotels like Bird Rock Hotel which provide us with superior service and make us feel like we are the most important guests they will ewver have.

Cookies and lemonade eacxh afternoon at the Bird Rock Hotel on San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Bird Rock Friday Harbor Hotel  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Bird Rock Hotel Friday Harbor Washington  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Local Lavender amenities at the Bird Rock Hotel  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Bird Rock Hotel San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

We are always appreciative of our time in the San Juan Islands. We have made some of our best memories as a family here and are excited to come back in the Summer to make more. 

Gorgeous patio at Friday Harbor's Bird Rock Hotel  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Beautiful Friday Harbor  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

No visit to San Juan Island is complete without a stop in Roche Harbor for fresh donuts. 

Spring on San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley
Ferry to Friday Harbor, San Juan Island  Lisette Wolter-McKinley

This post was sponsored by Bird Rock Hotel. All opinions stated here are my own and I was under no obligation to write anything other than my personal experience. I will never write about anything I did not enjoy or find to be a valuable experience. 

 

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"What a delightful place to stay!...

The staff is wonderful and the little extras

make it a comfortable place to stay."

--TripAdvisor®
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