Once again it’s tulip time.  The fields and display gardens are a blaze of color and Skagit Valley is packed with people enjoying the view.  Anacortes is far enough away (15 minutes) to eliminate the crowds and congestion.  The Tulip Festival will go on all month, with art shows, salmon barbecues and wine tastings.  There will be a street fair in Mount Vernon this weekend — lots of lovely things made by local artisans.  Anacortes restaurants are ready for guests, and of course Autumn Leaves is open for business.  See you soon!

Shipwreck Day Saturday


Anacortes Arts Festival

Anacortes Arts Festival


Tomorrow the streets will be blocked off for a huge garage/antique/junk sale.  This is a forerunner of the Arts Festival, which will take place at the beginning of August.  I like Shipwreck Day, but I LOVE the Arts Festival.  Over 200 booths, most items made by local artisans and all interesting and unique.  Fabric art, glass, pottery, paintings, photography, yard art, food, jewelry, it’s all there August 5-7.  Reserve your room now because the town will be bursting at the seams.

Published in: on July 15, 2016 at 12:32 pm  Leave a Comment  

Day trips out of Anacortes

There’s much to do in Anacortes, but if you want to go further afield consider taking the 10 minute ferry ride to Guemes Island.  Or drive up Chuckanut to Bellingham.  White Rock, BC isn’t too far, and neither is Vancouver.  Going east there is Marblemount (The Eatery!) and Skagit River trips.  South is Seattle Outlet Mall and Seattle itself.  Snohomish is an hour away and La Conner 20 minutes.  But many of our guests prefer to stay here in town, renting kayaks or going whale watching, fishing, hiking in the forestlands or on one of the beautiful waterfront trails.  Others like shopping or the casino or just staying on our patio relaxing with some iced tea and enjoying the beautiful garden.  Whatever you enjoy, we think you can find it here in Anacortes.

Published in: on July 8, 2016 at 12:54 pm  Leave a Comment  

July events in Anacortes

Lots going on this month in Anacortes.  4th of July concert, fireworks and parade.  Wed and Fri night concerts in the park (free!).  Shipwreck Day on the 16th, Highland Games in Mount Vernon on the 9th and 10th, all leading up to the Arts Festival the first weekend in August.  Our summer weather is usually perfect: not too hot, not too cool.  Sit outside and sip wine or iced tea, hike by the water or in the woods, shop til you drop and follow it all up with dinner at one of Anacortes’ excellent restaurants.  It doesn’t get much better than this!

Published in: on July 1, 2016 at 2:28 pm  Leave a Comment  

Busy summer in Anacortes

In summer Anacortes is humming.  Beautiful scenery, boating, whale watching, antiquing, hiking, shopping and many other activities bring tourists from Seattle and all over.  We are about 90 miles from both Seattle and Vancouver, BC, and it’s about a 5 hour drive from Portland, so many of our guests are from those areas.  However, we have had guests from Australia, New Zealand, Israel, Scotland, Germany and other parts of Europe as well as Asia.  For sheer beauty the Pacific northwest is hard to beat.  We have traveled the world, but love coming home to Anacortes.  Isn’t it time you saw for yourself?

Published in: on May 31, 2016 at 3:16 pm  Leave a Comment  

Book now for summer

The tulip fields have been cut and tourist activity will be quieter for the next month or so.  But then summer will be upon us and the town will be busy.  Whale watching is always popular, as is kayaking, bicycling, hiking, shopping, fishing, island hopping, the casino, bowling, etc. etc.  Check out our Things to Do page:  http://autumn-leaves.com/thingstodo.cfm    We particularly enjoy the free concerts in the park on Wed. and Friday evenings.  And what could be better than sitting outside a nice restaurant drinking wine or coffee, eating something delicious and watching the world go by?  We have some good pubs, a couple of restaurants at water’s edge, and downtown restaurants to fulfill whatever you are craving.  Come and hang out with us!

Published in: on April 22, 2016 at 3:02 pm  Leave a Comment  

Early spring?

Many of our daffodil leaves are over 3″ high already, which may indicate early blooming for the spring flowers.  Tulip Festival (all of April) is right around the corner!  Also in April is the Anacortes Wine Festival on April 9.  30 WA wines will be available for sampling, as well as food treats from local restaurants.  That same weekend you could go to the boat show and the winter farmers’ market.  The town will be busy so make your reservations soon.

Published in: on February 5, 2016 at 2:20 pm  Leave a Comment  

Eagles and Snow Geese and Swans, oh my!

January is the best time to come to the Skagit area and look for eagles.  On a recent morning we saw several dozen bald eagles and quite a few of their huge nests.  It’s still not too late, there are a lot of them still around, and in fact we see eagles all year, but not in these numbers.  Snow geese are crowding the fields, honking and strutting.  It’s marvelous to see a whole cloud of them lift off or land at the same time.   Trumpeter swans are also much in evidence, both on the water and in the fields.  Great blue heron abound, as do hawks and smaller birds.  Bring a camera and old shoes, as many areas are muddy.

Published in: on January 29, 2016 at 1:05 pm  Leave a Comment  

Winter in Anacortes

Yes, it’s cold and sometimes rainy in Anacortes in winter, but it’s still beautiful and there are still things to do.  Eagle watching along the Skagit River is good in Jan/Feb.  You could see fields of swans and geese as well.  And walking has to be high on the list in this weather.  The forest stays fairly dry because it’s covered by branches.  Friends of the Forest lead hikes once or twice a month.  The Tommy Thompson Trail is always lovely.  Put on a rain jacket (just in case) and head out over the water.  We won’t get really busy until April, when the Tulip Festival will bring visitors from near and far.  In April also there is a house and boat tour, a street fair (in Mount Vernon) and other activities.  Meanwhile, if it’s wet, we can go bowling, to a movie or play, shopping and that great pastime, eating!  We have some wonderful restaurants here and crowds won’t be a problem until summer.  But my favorite cold weather activity is sitting by a warm fire with hot chocolate and a good book.

Published in: on January 11, 2016 at 4:31 pm  Leave a Comment  

Autumn is on its way

The weekend wind storm and this week’s rain have reminded us that autumn will soon be here.  Summer activities are winding down and we are looking forward to pumpkins, scarecrows and warm fireplaces.  It’s a great time for a walk along the Thompson Trail or a hike in the woods or to the top of Mount Erie.  Farmer’s Market is still happening on Saturdays.  There are fewer people around and the pace is slower.  But you can still see a play or movie, go bowling, shopping or kayaking.  Lunch at Gere-a-deli or Calico Cupboard is still cozy and delicious.  Dinner at Anthony’s or Adrift is still a treat.  It’s a great time to peer into Rosario Beach tidepools or take pictures of Deception Bridge swathed in clouds.  Every season in Anacortes has its charms, but autumn is special indeed.

Published in: on August 31, 2015 at 11:46 am  Leave a Comment