Where to Go on Puget Sound Ferries

Ferries on Puget Sound are so common that several are designated as stretches of state highways. They are also a great way to explore the region.

Some Puget Sound ferries reach into the commercial heart of cities such as Edmonds and Bremerton; others give drivers access to the bucolic charm of Vashon and Whidbey Islands. Perhaps the most unique experience is afforded to pedestrian passengers looking to alight in small towns.

Mukilteo, 30 minutes from downtown Seattle and the launching point for a ride to Whidbey Island, boasts an outpost of Ivar’s, a regional institution for fish, chips and chowders. It also abuts Mukilteo Lighthouse Park, home to a lighthouse and sandy, driftwood-strewn beaches.

Kingston ferry passengers ambling a block away from the dock are greeted with a range of sweet or savory treats at J’aime les Crêpes. Summers the peninsula’s bounty is on display just below the gangway at the Kingston Farmers Market.

For sojourners in Seattle, it’s hard to beat an escape on the Bainbridge Island ferry. A 35-minute passage leads travelers to a main street where they can nibble on scones at Blackbird Bakery, sample succulent flavors at Mora Iced Creamery, sip wine at the Eleven Winery tasting room or just browse the shops. And families love the Kids Discovery Museum for its interactive educational exhibits.

—Bill Hutfilz