The Salish Sea is the intricate network of coastal waterways that includes the southwestern portion of the Canadian province of British Columbia and the northwestern portion of the U.S. state of Washington. Its major bodies of water are the Strait of Georgia, the Strait of Juan de Fuca, and Puget Sound. 

 

The Salish Sea is one of the world's largest and biologically rich inland seas. Its name pays tribute to the first inhabitants of the region, the Coast Salish. The Salish Sea is an inland sea that encompasses Puget Sound, the San Juan Islands, and the waters off of Vancouver, BC

 

Within the Salish Sea sits Washington’s San Juan Islands, an archipelago that consists of more than 100 islands and islets nested at the northwest corner of the state. The main islands, Orcas, Lopez, San Juan, and dainty Guemes, are home to an elite group of restaurants that are often destinations in themselves.  It goes without saying, too, that local sourcing rules the roost here. After all, the islands are smack in the middle of some serious bounty, from fertile island-based farms to the nearby agricultural powerhouse of Skagit Valley to an abundance of waterborne delights like oysters and halibut. And the artistic, crafty culture here extends to the kitchens, where it’s commonplace for as many ingredients as possible to be made on-site.

 

In 2009, the Straits of Georgia and Juan de Fuca, along with Puget Sound were officially given the same of the Salish Sea.  Long viewed by many in the region – most notably the Coast Salish people –  as one body of water, this region is one of the most biologically rich inland seas in the world.

 

The Salish Sea encompasses inland waterways stretching from the south end of Puget Sound in Washington State to Desolation Sound at the northern end of the Strait of Georgia in B.C., including the Juan de Fuca Strait. Similar to the Great Lakes, adding Salish Sea as the umbrella name for the larger body of water will not change names already in place.
 

Tucked at the northeast corner of the Olympic Peninsula, and the middle of the Salish Sea is Port Townsend which sits removed from the mountains, rivers, and rainforests that are usually considered the region’s signature attractions. As if to compensate for its relative isolation, Port Townsend is a cozy and charming town. Distinguished Victorian-era buildings situated along a bluff overlooking the Strait of Juan de Fuca are home to boutiques, hotels, and an impressively varied selection of restaurants — here are some great bets.  The crown jewel of the area however is the Port Ludlow Inn which is a 37 room boutique, waterfront inn inspired by New England’s classic coastal summer homes. Accommodations include 35 guest rooms and two suites. In each of the beautifully appointed guest rooms, you will find numerous amenities including a fireplace and jetted tub. Most rooms provide spectacular water and mountain views and private balconies. The Inn features a waterfront award-winning restaurant, as well as 3,000 square feet of meeting space and hosts retreats, conferences, social gatherings, and special events.

 

Adjacent to Port Ludlow, deeper into the Chimikum Valley sits Finn River Farms. The Finnriver crew farms and ferments on 80 acres of organic fields and orchard in the Chimacum Valley, along a restored salmon stream on the north Olympic Peninsula of Washington. While the farm is remote, they are on the forefront of the Pacific Northwest hard cider revival and to craft ciders that both honor historic hard cider traditions and offer fresh perspectives on the possibilities of the fermented apple. They grow and source organic and seasonal ingredients to celebrate the beauty and bounty of the earth.

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