Deception Pass State Park
Deception Pass State Park is Washington’s most-visited state park. Mysterious coves, rugged cliffs, gorgeous sunsets and a stomach-dropping high bridge make this park a go-to for locals and international travelers alike. Check out the many trails including our favorite hike to the highest elevation on Whidbey Island: Goose Rock.
This park is equipped with automated pay stations for visitors to purchase a one-day or annual Discover Pass and boat launch permit.
South Whidbey State Park
South Whidbey State Park is only a 10 minute drive from A Home On The Harbor. The park is a 347-acre day use park with 4,500 feet of saltwater shoreline on Admiralty Inlet. Currently beach access is not available, but you’ll enjoy easy hikes in the woods and picnics that are great for families. The park features include old-growth forest (including a 500 year old cedar tree), lush undergrowth and tidelands. Perfect for a family hike and picnic. More trail info at Washington Trails Association.
This park is equipped with an automated pay station for visitors to purchase a one-day or annual Discover Pass.
Ebey's Landing National Historical Reserve
This stunning landscape at the gateway to Puget Sound, with its rich farmland and promising seaport, lured the earliest American pioneers north of the Columbia River to Ebey’s Landing. Today Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve preserves the historical, agricultural and cultural traditions of both native and Euro-American – while offering spectacular opportunities for recreation. This location is the best of both worlds, gorgeous working farmland abuts dramatic cliff sides and the stunning views and beaches of Admiralty Inlet waterway. See historical homes and hike the trails for a refreshing and fabulous day in nature. Bring your sun hat and jackets. You’ll have lots of weather exposure here!
Park with your pass in the lower lot, or choose to start at the free upper lot. More information here.
A short, steep hike (.7 miles) from the South Bridge parking lot will take you to Goose Rock, the highest point on Whidbey Island. At 484 feet, Goose Rock has unrivaled views of Deception Pass and the surrounding islands. On a clear day you can even see Victoria.
At the top of Goose Rock, hikers are treated to a rare glimpse of a unique ecosystem: rocky balds. Left behind by retreating ice sheets at the end of the last major glaciation, rocky balds are characterized by exposed bed rock (usually granite) with sparse patches of thin soil. Beautiful but delicate wildflowers dot the balds in the spring and summer. The Goose Rock balds are among the most impacted areas in the park. Please stay on the trail so that visitors can continue to enjoy this unique treasure.
Goose Rock can be accessed via 4 different trails to the north, south, east and west of the summit. The Goose Rock Perimeter Trail runs along the eastern base of the peak and features views of Strawberry Island, Ben Ure Island, and Cornet Bay.
Park at the Deception Pass parking area. Parking passes needed (you can buy them there). More information here.