Family-friendly wildlife spotting off the coast of Washington.

By Travel & Leisure
September 07, 2012
Stefan Jacobs / Alamy

Pods of migrating whales, plus otters and seals, can be spotted just off the shores of Friday Harbor. Orcas are the most commonly sighted, but humpbacks, gray, and minke pass through here, too. Take a tour to listen to a naturalist speak about their habits and listen to their eerie calls. The season lasts from mid-April to early October, but the best time to spot the majestic creatures is from late May through September.

Orcas Island

San Juan Brewing Co. and the Front Street Alehouse

San Juan Safaris

While you're in one of the best whale-watching spots in the world, don't miss boating out to Haro Strait to marvel at breaching orcas and humpbacks frolicking with their calves.

Whale Museum

Check out the migration maps and cetacean skeletons.

Lime Kiln Cafe

Tuck into fish-and-chips and hearty burgers.

Lakedale Resort at Three Lakes

On 83 woodsy acres in one of the prettiest parts of the Pacific Northwest, accommodations range from a lodge and an Airstream to 15 comfortable tent cabins.