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3 Ultrafun Camping Trailer or Campervan Trips for Seattle-Area Families

One family’s trial run, three itineraries and where to rent or buy a rig

Lauren Braden

Published on: June 29, 2023

3 Ultrafun Camping Trailer or Campervan Trips for Seattle-Area Families

Relaxing inside a camping trailer
Relaxing inside a camping trailer. Courtesy Happier Camper

Island-hopping in the San Juans

Camping on the rocky, emerald San Juan Islands is bucket-list material for many Pacific Northwest families. Most campgrounds on the islands don’t provide utility hookups, so this trip is best for trailers and camper vans that can get by with battery power or propane for cooking, lighting and heating needs.

The best order in which to visit all of the three main islands on just the one ferry fare from Anacortes is to sail first to Friday Harbor on San Juan Island, then to Orcas Island and then to Lopez Island. It’s a good idea to make ferry reservations for the sailing from Anacortes — and don’t forget to reserve adequate space for your vehicle plus travel trailer.
Day 1
San Juan County Park on the west side of San Juan Island will take your breath away. Perched on a high bluff facing Haro Strait (aka “whale central”), you have a chance of spotting a pod of orcas from your camp chair. (Lime Kiln Point State Park, just a short distance south of Haro Strait, is even more reliable for spotting killer whales.) As for camping, there are specific sites suitable for RVs up to 20 feet in length, all with amazing views of the strait, but no hookups. (If you have a larger RV or need hookups, make a reservation at the county fairgrounds near Friday Harbor, which has eight RV campsites with electrical and water hookups.) Reserve online.
Day 2
Moran State Park on Orcas Island is the crown jewel of the islands, encompassing more than 5,000 acres of forest and lakes; it is also home to the island’s highest point, 2,400-foot Mount Constitution. Our favorite area to camp at the park is at Mountain Lake, where you’ll get a bit more privacy; the trail around the lake makes for an easy, relaxing morning stroll. Of the 151 campsites, most can accommodate travel trailers, though none have hookups, so pack your solar batteries. Reserve online or by calling 1-888-226-7688.
Day 3

Spencer Spit State Park on Lopez Island is home to a wide beach of sand and pebbles that juts into a salty bay. Kids will love exploring at low tide, spotting sea stars and other critters. The stroll to the tip of the spit is about 1 mile round-trip. There are 37 campsites (most can accommodate RVs up to 20 feet in length), but no utility hookups. Reserve online or by calling 1-888-226-7688.

Next: Where to rent or buy your rig

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