Posted by: Mariah
Orcas island offers some of the most beautiful Pacific Northwest experiences. Just yesterday, a young man was telling me how he could not believe how picturesque it really is here! Every view is breathtaking and every breath is fresh clean oxygen! And there is no better way to experience Orcas than to camp! Luckily, on Orcas there are a lot of camping opportunities!
Orcas Island Campgrounds
Moran State Park Camping
With Lakeside views, all sorts of swimming activities, hiking trails just outside your campsite and easy access back to town for supplies, Moran State Park is definitely the easiest and maybe more rewarding of all the camping on Orcas Island.
Below Mount Constitution lays Cascade Lake, a gorgeous and very swimable lake complete with rentable paddle boards and canoes and such, not to mention an ice cream stand from the local Lopez Island Creamery! There is also a hiking trail around the lake that is beautiful! I love to come hiking and running around the lake and then diving in on hot summer days!
There are three groups of campsites along this lake, the North End, Midway and South End. The North End Sites are on the hill overlooking the lake and so have some lovely views and are just a short walk across the road to the lake. The Midway are directly on the water but are also right on the roadside. The South End sites are on the water and sort of tucked into a corner of the lake and so are a little more secluded. All of these camping sites have restrooms and showers.
Moran Park even has camping for just bikers! A short hike, or Bicycle ride along one of the biker trails leads you to the Biker and Adirondack camping sites. These sites do not have any space for a car! They are for the backpackers and the backpacking bikers.
As you move farther into the park, there is a turnoff to go up Mount Constitution. Follow this road until the signs point you to Mountain Lake and you’ll find even more camping! This lake also has a hiking trail around it and is rustic, and quiet. The campsites up here have only restrooms. For all these campsites, reservations can be made online.
Obstruction Pass Park Camping
This is my favorite park on the island! A short half mile hike brings you through some incredible views overlooking the ocean, and then you arrive at an adorable pebbly beach with some really amazing wildlife watching. I’ve spotted some fish and crabs in the water from my floaty here!
The campsites are located on the cliff edge overviewing the beach. They are beautiful sites with grills. The sites are pack in pack out so anything you bring in, please bring out! There is a minimal bathroom. The sites are first come first served, and there is generally at least a couple empty sites! What a secret gem!
Doe Bay Camping
A drive out to the most quiet part of the island will find you at Doe Bay Resort. This serene resort is home to some awesome hot tubs and spa, an excellent restaurant and some amazing views of the ocean. From here you can go on a sea kayaking tour, or a whale watching tour. They also host yoga, and open mic nights here. It’s a resort for rejuvenation.
They also have really beautiful campsites! There are forested sites and waterfront sites! At Doe Bay, unfortunately, they keep all firemaking to one community fire, so having your own fire at your campsite is not allowed. For these campsites there is a off site guest kitchen and bathrooms with showers.
Mount Baker Farm Camping
Mount Baker farm is a great option for camping also! As I’ve mentioned before, their campground is a beautiful spot for bringing your own tent, or using one of their very cool Kodiak or Labelle Lotus tents!
Orcas Island Camping Reservations
Making reservations for camping on Orcas Island depends on the place you are camping at! Moran state park takes reservations, as well as Doe Bay and Mount Baker Farm, but Obstruction pass does not.
Orcas Island Camping Cabins
If camping in a tent is not your style there is definitely some wonderful cabin camping to be done on Orcas!
At Doe Bay, there are several different ways to enjoy your stay. They have a couple different type of cabins, yurts and ‘domes’. Some of the cabins have running water and some do not. The yurts and domes do not have running water and only some have electricity.
For cabin camping there is also West Beach and Beach Haven resorts. As I’ve said before, these resorts specialize in cabins right on the water! West Beach has an incredible view of a lot of really interesting fish life and is really great for kids. Beach Haven is much quieter and a little more secluded.
Orcas Island Glamping
Back in Moran State Park, there is a glamping campground! This campground offers canvas tents that are furnished right next to the south end of Cascade Lake. Make reservations with LeanTo online!
Orcas Island RV Camping
There are a few RV camping spots on the island. Moran State park offers RV camping. Westbeach Resort also offers RV camping. Doe Bay has a few campsites for smaller RV’s and trailers.
San Juan Island Camping Reservations
On San Juan Island there is also camping! Lakedale Resort offers glamping, yurts, cabins and regular hotel stays. Reservations can be made on their website. San Juan County Parks also offers camping and requires reservations to be made 90 days in advance. At Free Horse Farm, they have regular tent camping and farm house rooms but also Tipi camping! The tipi is fully furnished. Reservations can be made online on their website.