Top Boating Communities of the Puget Sound

Whether it’s island-hopping in the San Juans or touring the countless coves, passages and lakes of the south Puget Sound—western Washington offers a myriad of options when it comes to exploration on the water. The inlets, islands and straights that make up the Puget Sound offer a dynamic experience for boaters, kayakers, and sailors who are lucky enough to call the region home. Here is our list of the Puget Sound’s most-desired boating communities.

Lake Washington

Lake Washington: The state’s second largest (and most well-known) lake hosts a number of waterfront communities that offer docks, boathouses and moorage for vessels from mega- yachts to speed boats.

Hunt's Point, Yarrow Point, and Medina

Hunt’s Point, Yarrow Point and Medina host some of the most luxurious and sought-after waterfront real estate in Washington. Straddling State Route 520, these neighborhoods sit at the middle of Lake Washington on the eastern side and have easy access to Union Bay and Lake Union to the west. With a variety of bays, coves, and channels--these neighborhoods offer plenty of homes with docks or opportunity for moorage.

Mercer Island

Mercer Island occupies the southern half of the Lake and is accessed via the I-90 freeway. Docks speckle its shoreline and offer waterfront home-buyers choices for any view orientation.

Gig Harbor

Gig Harbor: On a clear day, one cannot help but be engulfed with massive views of Mount Rainier as you make your way through the Harbor. Situated on the Kitsap Peninsula to the southwest of Seattle, this New England-style waterfront hamlet is a perfect sanctuary for boaters and kayakers alike. On the south end of town, Wollochet Bay, Horsehead Bay, and Fox Island offer more options for waterfront with docks or moorage.

Hood Canal

Hood Canal: At the feet of the Olympic Mountains, the Hood Canal’s blue waters give boaters an experience like no other in Western Washington. The unique, “fjord-like” body of water cuts through the Olympic Peninsula, is 70 miles long and averages 1.5 miles in width. Known for its abundance of fish, crab, and shellfish—the region is one of the most popular destinations for boaters and sportsman.



Alderbrook, is the iconic resort of the Hood Canal with fine dining, a spa, and one of the PNW’s top-rated golf courses. Situated on the south side of the “Big Bend” near Union, this waterfront retreat is accessible by boat and seaplane and has 1500 lineal feet of guest moorage.

Pleasant Harbor

Pleasant Harbor is the premier boating facility for the north Hood Canal. Located just south of Brinnon on Hwy 101, the cove is protected on three sides making it the ideal location to keep a boat moored through the rougher winter months.

Bainbridge Island

Bainbridge Island: Directly to the west of downtown Seattle, Bainbridge Island’s Eagle Harbor is where Seattleites have historically gone to escape the hustle and bustle of the city. Two marinas on either side of the Harbor, private docks, and mooring ability make it a quick and easy place to skip across the Sound.

Whidbey island

Whidbey Island: The long, narrow island that sits to the north of Seattle has some of the most dynamic areas for boating in all the Puget Sound. While the area offers some incredibly scenic and rugged terrains, accessing the water can be tricky with the assorted bluffs and rocky outcroppings.

Lagoon Point

Lagoon Point, sits on the western side of the island opposite Greenbank. The location is ideal for boaters wanting a midway point between Seattle and the San Juan Islands.

Port Ludlow

Port Ludlow: A sleepy little hamlet located on the northeast corner of the Olympic Peninsula at the mouth of the Hood Canal, Port Ludlow’s Marina and Resort is a well-known boating community for large and small vessels alike. A perfect place to spend the day or to setup your home port.

Port Townsend

Port Townsend: As one of the Olympic Peninsula’s most diverse boating communities, Port Townsend represents all the elements of picturesque PNW boating. Multiple bays, coves, and straights surround this fun, artsy community by the water. A perfect central location to access the south Puget Sound, San Juan Islands, or Strait of Juan de Fuca make Port Townsend a top destination for any boater.

 La Conner

La Conner: Shelter Bay’s access via the Swinomish Channel makes it a perfect place to hideaway in any season. La Conner’s historic waterfront district gives visitors a glimpse into the past with its restored shops and restaurants.


Anacortes: Flounder Bay sits on the western edge of Fidalgo Island at the mouth of Burrows Pass. A perfect jumping point to the San Juan Islands, Strait of Georgia, or Strait of Juan de Fuca makes this one of the region’s most desired boating communities.

San Juan Islands

San Juan Islands: As one of the Puget Sound’s most recognize destinations for boaters and tourists alike, it’s easy to see why so many people flock to this archipelago every year.

Friday Harbor

Friday Harbor sits on the eastern edge of San Juan Island as one of the main stops for tourists exploring the area. With a port and several marinas, this quaint little village by the sea attracts thousands of visitors and makes for a perfect destination for the day or extended stays.

Roche Harbor

Roche Harbor is San Juan Islands gateway to Victoria and greater Vancouver Island. On the northwest corner of the island, Roche Harbor boasts a waterfront resort, marina, boat ramp and U.S. Customs station.

Deer Harbor

Deer Harbor is the go-to boating community for Orcas Island with two marinas on the eastern and western side of the harbor. With a resort and a multitude of BnB’s, you’ll find plenty of places to relax and enjoy this little waterfront paradise.

Washington Waterfronts Boating Communities

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