Savor the San Juans: Orcas Island Farm Tour
Two weekends ago, we hopped on a ferry bound for Pebble Cove Farm on Orcas Island. It had been a long time since we last visited Orcas Island and we were excited to visit some familiar places, but more importantly participate in the Orcas Island Farm Tour, stay at Pebble Cove Farm and eat dinner at New Leaf Cafe. The Orcas Island Farm Tour is just one of the many events occurring during the Savor the San Juans which runs thru November 12th. Savor the San Juans is a nine year tradition which has grown to encompass three film festivals, art exhibits, a new sustainable seafood Salish Sea Festival, a farm parade, two vineyard harvest festivals, harvest dinners, farm tours and much more. I love the San Juan Islands and with the stunning ferry ride this is one instance where getting there is really half the fun.
Whenever you plan a trip to the San Juan Islands make certain you make a ferry reservation. Also, even when you have a ferry reservation you must show up at least thirty minutes prior to departure or your reservation is no longer valid.
The Orcas Island Farm Tour started with a delicious and hearty brunch at The Kitchen followed by a full day of farm exploration. Before I went on this farm tour I had no idea the quantity or quality of working farms on Orcas Island. During the tour, I was impressed with how self sustainable the island is and what a high quality and unique life island living can provide.
We visited numerous farms that day, but here are some of the highlights from our day. The first farm we visited was West Beach Farm. While we were there we were able to see for the first time a sheep being sheared and we were able to gain a new appreciation for where the fibers in some of our clothing come from.
A memorable stop was at Warm Valley Farm. Here we were able to watch apples go from freshly picked off the tree to being pressed into cider. We were even able to walk away with our very own jar of fresh cider and were amazed by the difference in taste and quality opposed to store bought. We will forever be ruined by the delicious cider we had at this farm. We are also happy to report we have the honored distinction of being their very first cider customers EVER.
It is also at this farm where we learned how many of the farms on Orcas Island operate farm stands where you can stop and buy their wonderful looking produce. In the future, it would be fun to compile a sort of scavenger hunt picnic with our delicious findings.
Although we missed seeing Girl Meets Dirt during the farm tour we were able to pick up a few jars of her delicious jam at the Saturday Farmer's market the day before.
At Warm Valley Orchard we stood in awe underneath the giant sunflowers, met the friendliest pigs and were impressed by the warmness of Bob, the owner.
At Orcasong Farm we learned how the climate in the San Juans makes for a longer growing season. We were witnesses of this phenomenon as we saw the most delicious raspberries still on the vine. At Orcasong Farm I also fell completely in love with this spectacular basket they had at their farm stand. I am committed to getting to the bottom of where they procured such a wondrous treasure.
We also took full advantage of the ample picnic tables at Orcasong Farm and had ourselves a little picnic in the middle of the flowers.
We enjoyed meeting the alpacas at Orcas Moon Alpaca Farm. Jasper was a little unsure about just how friendly they were, but after sitting on their tractor he deemed it one of his favorite stops of the day.
Four hours was not nearly enough time to visit all of these spectacular farms on Orcas Island. We had so much fun at every stop before we knew it our time was up and it was time to board our ferry and head off on our next adventure.
This post was sponsored by San Juan Island Visitors Bureau.
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.