You know the vibe at your local farmer’s market; the feeling of authenticity and positivity, the focus on enjoying things that can be found nearby you, and the spirit of participating in your community? If you could take that vibe and extend it to an entire 12-mile by 3-mile island, Vashon would be the outcome.
Sitting smack in the middle of Puget Sound, between Seattle and Tacoma, several million people live within ~30 miles of Vashon. Thankfully, though, the island is only accessible by ferry – a process inconvenient enough to protect it from suburban sprawl and all the negatives that come with it, but still easily within reach for a pleasant day trip from Seattle.
Most of the island is rural: a mix of rolling hills, farms, and forests, and beaches with beautiful views of the water and the mountains. There are only a few small towns (villages, really) but, belying its population of only 10,000, there are some excellent coffee shops, bakeries, and restaurants. There are almost no chains to be found; all the businesses tend to be of the funky, artsy, ex-hippie sort. A popular local bumper sticker reads, “Keep Vashon Weird.”
To me, the island’s most endearing feature is the countless roadside farm stands selling local produce, mostly on the honor system (that kind of thing just wouldn’t happen in the city). And like the rest of the Pacific Northwest, Vashon is apparently well-suited for growing all kinds of berries- delicious, addictive ones that I usually can’t stop eating until I give myself a stomach ache.
Anyway, our photos will better tell the story of a day trip we took to Vashon on a beautiful summer day. Enjoy!