Skagit Valley Travel Guide

  • 01 of 08

    Why You Should Visit Skagit Valley

    Pink and white tulips in Washington's Skagit Valley
    ••• A field of pink and white tulips in Washington's Skagit Valley. ©Angela M. Brown 2007

    Charming. Picturesque. These words get thrown around a lot when talking about small Northwest towns. Nonetheless, these words perfectly capture the atmosphere you'll find among the towns of Washington's Skagit Valley, which include La Conner, Mount Vernon, Bow, and Burlington. These towns occupy an amazingly fertile valley that lies between the Puget Sound the the Cascade Mountains. You'll find views in every direction - snow-capped mountains, lush fields, waterfront marinas.

    Skagit Valley is the perfect place for a getaway all year round. If the weather's nice, you can enjoy hiking, rafting, bird watching, and boating, as well as driving or biking tours, farm and seafood stands, or just sitting at a dockside bench. If it's raining, there's still plenty of indoor fun, including a major casino, museums, and numerous shops, galleries, and eateries.

    Here's the info you need to plan your own Skagit Valley getaway:

    • Fun Things to Do in Skagit Valley
    • Outdoor Recreation...MORE in Skagit Valley
    • Events & Festivals in Skagit Valley
    • Shops & Galleries in Skagit Valley
    • Dining in Skagit Valley
    • Hotels & Lodging in Skagit Valley
    • How to Get to Skagit Valley
    Continue to 2 of 8 below.
  • 02 of 08

    Fun Things to Do in Skagit Valley

    Picture of the La Conner Quilt and Textile Museum
    ••• La Conner Quilt and Textile Museum. © Angela M. Brown (2010)

    While spring is clearly the most popular time for a visit, Skagit Valley is a great getaway all year round. The fertile valley and water views inspire many artists, giving rise to a number of shops and galleries. Located only an hour north of Seattle, the rural panoramas provide a convenient and relaxing escape from city life.

    La Conner Quilt Museum
    Housed in the historic Gaches Mansion, this museum showcases quilts from around the world and from local artists.

    Skagit County Historical Museum
    In addition to changing special exhibitions, the Skagit County Historical Museum's collection covers the region's Native peoples, local industry, and the pioneer and homestead eras. The museum sits on a hill; be sure to step out onto the museum's viewing deck to enjoy panoramic views of Skagit Valley's farms, fields, and surrounding mountains.

    Museum of Northwest Art
    The works of the Pacific Northwest's leading artists are exhibited at this La Conner museum. Glass art, sculpture, and...MORE paintings are all featured, with works by artists such as Morris Graves and Dale Chihuly. You will enjoy the opportunity to purchase Northwest art books, gift items, and jewelry at MoNA's store.

    Skagit Valley Casino Resort
    Located in Bow, this Northwest-style casino resort offers Las Vegas-style gambling, live entertainment, a lounge, a hotel, an indoor pool, meeting space, and fine and casual dining.

    Continue to 3 of 8 below.
  • 03 of 08

    Outdoor Recreation in Skagit Valley

    Bald Eagle Roosting in a Snag, Skagit Valley near Mount Vernon
    ••• Bald Eagle Roosting in a Snag. Washington State Tourism

    Bird Watching in Skagit Valley
    The dormant fields, river, and marine environment of the Skagit Valley offer abundant opportunity to watch and photograph birds, including trumpeter swans, snow geese, owls, and eagles.

    Sight-seeing Cruises & Rafting in Skagit Valley
    Travel the waters to view whales and wildlife, the San Juan Islands, and the natural beauty of the Puget Sound.

    Continue to 4 of 8 below.
  • 04 of 08

    Events and Festivals in Skagit Valley

    The communities of Skagit Valley celebrate many fairs and festivals throughout the year.

     

    Upper Skagit Bald Eagle Festival - educational and bird viewing events (Jan)

    Skagit Valley Tulip Festival - colorful fields of daffodils, tulips, and irises, display garden, art shows (April)

    Burlington Berry Dairy Days - fireworks, parade, street fair, car show (June)

    Skagit Valley Highland Games - traditional Celtic competitions and family fun (July)

    Skagit County Fair - all the traditional fair favorites like farm animals and carnival rides (Aug)

    Continue to 5 of 8 below.
  • 05 of 08

    Shops and Galleries in Skagit Valley

    View of La Conner from Hill Overlooking Shops and Waterfront
    ••• View of La Conner from Hill Overlooking Shops and Waterfront. © Angela M. Brown (2010)

    A Skagit Valley weekend getaway often includes a stroll through local galleries and boutiques. Here is a sample of what you'll find.

    The Wood Merchant
    709 S. First Street, La Conner
    This wonderful shop specializes in fine wooodworking, including furniture and gift items.

    Bunnies by the Bay
    623 Morris Street, La Conner
    Adorable baby clothes, plush critters, and other toys and gift items for all ages.

    Two Moons Gallery & Gifts
    620 S. First Street, La Conner
    This wonderful La Conner shop features fine crafted items that will add a unique element to your home decor.

    Roozengarde Gift Shop
    15867 Beaver Marsh Road, Mount Vernon
    Open year-round, this flower and gift shops features garden-themed items for indoors and out.

    Continue to 6 of 8 below.
  • 06 of 08

    Dining in Skagit Valley

    Picture of Seeds Bistro in La Conner Washington
    ••• Seeds Bistro in La Conner, Washington. ©Angela M. Brown 2010

    Here are my recommendations for places to eat in Washington's Skagit Valley.

    Farmhouse Restaurant
    13724 LaConner Whitney Rd, Mount Vernon
    Homestyle foods to warm you up on a chilly day, including roast turkey dinners and their famous lemon meringue pie.

    Skagit River Brewing Company
    404 S. 3rd Street, Mount Vernon
    House-brewed beer and root beer, Northwest pub food, and wood-fired pizzas are the specialty at this unassuming gem.

    LaConner Seafood & Prime Rib House
    614 S. First St., La Conner
    Enjoy waterfront dining in their lovely dining room, or take advantage of their banquet facilities.

    Nell Thorn Waterfront Bistro & Bar
    116 South First St., La Conner
    Foodies will relish their gourmet food that features fresh local ingredients.

    Seeds Bistro and Bar
    623 Morris Street, La Conner
    Another excellent eatery that specializes in meals created from local produce, dairy, chicken, and beef.

    Continue to 7 of 8 below.
  • 07 of 08

    Hotels & Lodging in Skagit Valley

    Picture of Skagit Valley Casino Resort in Bow, Washington
    ••• Skagit Valley Casino Resort in Bow, Washington. ©Angela M. Brown

    The Skagit Valley is a popular year-round getaway and offers a wide selection of bed and breakfasts, country inns, rentals, and other types of lodging. Here are my recommendations.

    Queen of the Valley Inn
    The Queen of the Valley is a gracious farmhouse bed and breakfast in the town of La Conner. Enjoy breakfast on the sun porch, or an evening of comfortable conversation in the inn's common areas.

    The Wild Iris
    This twelve-room inn features Jacuzzi spas in every room, some on private decks, others by the fireplace. The Wild Iris also offers a well-equipped conference room, making it a great place for a group meeting or corporate retreat.

    Hampton Inn & Suites
    Located in Burlington, this Hampton Inn & Suites provides modern, spacious rooms where you can relax and recharge after a day of work or play.

    Best Western Cotton Tree Inn
    Located in Mt. Vernon, this chain hotel an outdoor pool, fitness center, restaurant, and meeting facilities.

    Skagit Valley Casino Resort
    This full-service...MORE casino resort offers a hotel, gambling, live entertainment, a lounge, a buffet, and fine dining. The Skagit Valley Casino Resort is located in right off of I-5 in Bow.

    La Conner Channel Lodge
    This waterfront lodge overlooks the Swinomish Channel and is convenient to La Conner's charming shopping district. Most rooms have a patio or balcony where you can relax and enjoy the water view.

    Continue to 8 of 8 below.
  • 08 of 08

    How to Get to Skagit Valley - Directions and Transportation

    Sea Plane Landing
    ••• Sea Plane Landing on Water along La Conner Channel, Skagit Valley. J. Poth/Washington State Tourism

    The Skagit Valley can be reached by driving, by ferry, by air, or by motorcoach. Amtrak makes scheduled stops in Mount Vernon.

    Driving:
    Skagit Valley is located along Interstate 5, approximately 50 miles north of Seattle.

    By Ferry:
    Visitors coming from the Olympic Peninsula, the San Juan Islands, or British Columbia can travel by ferry.

    Washington State Ferries

    Other Ferries

    By Air: