Lopez Island is one of friendliest places I have ever been. This becomes apparent immediately with the “Lopez Wave.” Every single person that we drove past waved, and I mean every single person—even the little kids waved.
Soft rolling hills lay out, dotted with small, family-run farms. Sheep nibble on the green grass, with well-kept homes of all shapes and sizes. Off-the-grid solar panels, windmills, and water-catchment systems enhance the homes.
We rounded the bend to the main metropolis, known as The Village. Coffee shops, craft stores, museums, a co-op, a hardware store, a handful of restaurants, an ice cream shop, gym, medical facility, a community hall, an outstanding library—and the Edenwild Inn.
The Edenwild is wonderful. The website boasts of a “boutique inn,” and it is beautiful and the food is outstanding. However, “boutique” makes the inn sound cold and uninviting to me. Expect instead to hear people laughing in the warmth of the fireplace room on the main floor. Expect to meet people from all over the world. Expect to call it home before you have been there even a full day. The pace is slow, the Internet—if any—is slow. The beds are amazing! In short: it’s perfect.
We left the windows open when we slept. Serenaded by frogs, with the smell of saltwater breezes in the evening, and the sounds of eagles and robins chirping in the morning. Kids were playing outside like they used to before they were entranced by electronics. People talked, to each other! The owners, like everyone else on the island, have day jobs. He is a teacher, his wife works, and his kids are a part of the team. They are a down-to-earth, caring, and inviting family.
We stayed in the offseason, early spring; they tend to fill up with weddings in June and late summer. I recommend trying a trip based around what type of experience you would like to have. Summer is bustling in the islands—great if you are into people-watching. Winter, spring, and fall can be the best times. We were worried about missing the Farmers’ Market in the summer, but we found the farms holding events in spring, plus a square dance at Woodman’s Hall. The beaches were almost empty and filled with marine life.
I am so happy I finally visited Lopez Island. I cannot wait to go back. If you do go, don’t forget to wave.
For more information on the Edenwild Inn, please visit their website at theedenwild.com
A great site to visit for what is happening on Lopez is www.salishrocks.org
For information on the Washington State Ferry schedule, look online at http://www.wsdot.wa.gov/ferries/
You will be taking the Anacortes-to-San-Juan ferry. In the summer, you can expect a two- or three-boat wait. I recommend making reservations for the ferry and getting there early.