On a lazy, sunny summer Sunday my roommate, Lindsey and I decided to head over to Bainbridge Island for a day of exploring. The 36-square mile island is home to 20,000 residents who enjoy its convenient access to Seattle, its gently rolling hills, pristine seashore and rich heritage.
To start the day off we drove down to the ferry terminal at Pier 52 and parked on the street and since it was Sunday, it was free! On the walk to the ferry we stopped at Starbucks for a coffee and breakfast to enjoy on the ride over to the island because the food selection is limited and a little pricey on the ferry. After purchasing our walk-on passenger tickets for $7.70 each, we boarded the boat and while we waited for departure we took some photos of the new Ferris wheel that had just opened. It is best for walk-on passengers to arrive 15 minutes before sailing to ensure you will make it on time. Vehicles should arrive at least 30 minutes in advance.
The ride over to Bainbridge was a short 35 minute trip. (WSDOT Ferry schedule) We sat inside in the lower section of the boat since it was still a bit chilly out on the water in the morning. After we docked we walked two blocks to meet up with Don from BI Scooter Rental. I had called ahead to reserve our scooters and it was a good thing because more people showed up wanting to rent and there were not enough to go around.
After driving some practice laps around the parking lot and paying $75 each to rent the scooters for the day we were off on our journey. We headed up Ferncliff Avenue and connected up with Manitou Beach Drive where we passed through a park and rode along the water. Eventually we got to Sunrise Drive which took us all the way to Fay Bainbridge Island State Park where we walked along the beach and had a clear view of Mt. Rainier.
Speeding along the tree covered roads through pastures and up and over hills we eventually made our way to the west side of the island. For a short break we stopped at Bainbridge Gardens to visit the nursery and gift shop. By then we were getting hungry.
Lunch at the Treehouse Cafe consisted of the tasty and filling Rockaway pizza and a salad. Because it was so nice out patio seating was full so we took a window table inside instead. Afterwards we moseyed on over to Fort Ward Park where we pulled over and walked along a trail into the park. Since the sun was out we rested on the grass overlooking the water and soaked up some rays. Heading out along Southeast Beach Drive we passed cute little beach houses and as the road turned into Country Club road the houses got bigger and fancier. In between the houses there was the most amazing view of Seattle especially along Rockaway Beach Road.
Once we reached the small town of Winslow we decided to explore the community and local shops. We stopped at a shabby chic vintage store, Salt & Sea shop, then were engulfed in the heavenly scent of fudge at Bon Bon Confections, looked at unique Pacific Northwest gifts at Millstream and tasted a few wines at Eleven Winery. For a list of more shops, visit the Bainbridge Island Downtown Association.
For dinner Lindsey and I stopped at the Harbour Public House and it felt like we walked into a comfortable old bar where everyone should know our names. We each ordered a hefeweizen and the fish and chips which was the perfect combination of crunchy outside and tender fish. Patio seating was available here and it overlooked the marina and a fantastic view of the Puget Sound and Seattle as the sun set.
MORA Iced Creamery was open until 10:00pm so we stopped there after dinner. Lindsey ordered the chocolate peanut butter moreo and I had the mint with shaved chocolate. Very delicious! By then it was getting dark and time to return the scooters and hop back on the ferry to get home.
Lindsey and I had a great time on Bainbridge Island and we look forward to exploring more islands around the Puget Sound!
For more information about Bainbridge Island visit Kitsap Peninsula's Visitor & Convention & Visitor Bureau.