A day hike in Lime Kiln Point State Park is perfect for exploring the history of the San Juan Islands.

Lime Kiln Point State Park is a day hike that offers amazing views and lots of local history. The hiking trails are relatively short but can be extended by continuing on to the nearly 200-acre Limekiln Preserve, which is owned by the San Juan County Land Bank, and is open to the public.

Points of interest include a quaint lighthouse, an overlook of Haro Strait, beach access, and of course a lime kiln or two. We started our hike by visiting the lighthouse, then wandered over to the lime kiln. There’s a great overlook of the lime kiln, which is in the process of being restored. It’s well worth the walk down the hill and long flight of stairs to the base of the lime kiln to take a closer look. As we were exploring, we noticed there was another stone structure through the trees. We crossed over onto the Limekiln Preserve and found an additional lime kiln that was in a serious state of disrepair, nature having taken its course on the century-old furnace.

Lime Kiln

Paul has an interest in dirt and quarries, so we went looking for the lime quarry that fed the kilns. What we found was a retired quarry with abundant views of the Straits and Vancouver Island, Canada.

Not Just Another Day Hike

Another unique thing to do is to sit by the water overlooking Haro Strait and watch for whales. Haro Strait is considered by many to be one of the best whale watching spots on earth. While visiting during the late spring through early fall, you are likely to see pods of Orca, Humpback, Gray and Minke whales chase the salmon as they move through the area.

A day hike at the State Park and Preserve is great for families, spotting wildlife and history buffs. The whale watch overlook is ADA accessible. If you’re able to explore the area, let us know what you enjoyed and share your photos with us on Instagram. Be sure to check out more of our travel, fishing, and educational blogs.

Traveling to the San Juan Islands

Location: San Juan Island is located off the NW corner of Washington State. Lime Kiln Point State Park and Limekiln Preserve are on the west side of the island – a perfect day hike.

Getting there: Take a Washington State Ferry from Anacortes to Friday Harbor, San Juan Island. Or fly into the Friday Harbor airport and rent a car. Reservations are almost always recommended.

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