Guemes Island homes, real estate, and tranquility… seven minutes, yet worlds away.
Though it is only a seven-minute ferry ride across Guemes Channel from downtown Anacortes, (and less than two hours from the drum beat of Seattle), Guemes Island feels worlds away and that is the way islanders want to keep it.
An eight square-mile patchwork of fields, farms, orchards, and sun-dappled woodlands, Guemes Island offers a laid-back, peaceful alternative to today’s over-booked schedules, with the commercial conveniences of friendly, small town of Anacortes just across the channel.
A busy community center and whopping dose of local spirit fuel Guemes’s slow-paced, rural character. Though artists’ studios and telecommuters’ home offices are tucked into the landscape and down beckoning gravel roads, Anderson’s General Store is Guemes’s lone commercial establishment. And while residents originally resisted its opening, Anderson’s, located adjacent to the Guemes ferry landing, is now a much-loved gathering spot, serving up daily breakfast, lunch, dinner, evening entertainment, and a sure-fire place to catch up on local doings.
The store’s motto sums up island sentiment: “If we don’t have it, we’ll explain how you can get along without it.”
For both locals and curious off-islanders, an island website offers a vibrant sampling of island doings and conversations. On-island, the dockside chalkboard, an active community center, church, library, and food and music gatherings at Anderson’s General Store keep everyone connected.
Homes sweet homes …
With miles of shoreline, many Guemes Island homes benefit from jaw-dropping views of the surrounding San Juan Islands as well as, to the east, dramatic glacier-capped Mt. Baker and the Cascade Mountain range. Nestled within its orchards and woodlands, interior island homes soak in Guemes’s pastoral charm.
Residences range from back-to-basics to spectacular. While residents from all income and social strata work side-by-side on common causes, the places they call home can vary from seasonal cabins and handcrafted, off-the-grid homes to dramatic cliffside perches, and private Northwest woodland getaways. There’s also land available to build your dream escape, quaint beachside cottage, or the perfect retirement home.
While there are no public campgrounds on Guemes Island, visitors can get a taste of island life-or enjoy a romantic getaway-with a stay at Guemes Island Resort or by booking one of the many vacation rentals.
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