Visit Whidbey Island with kids: Exploring Coupeville

Whidbey Island may be small, but it’s tall, as my sons have noted after a map study. When families come to visit Whidbey Island with kids, it’s useful to stay in the center of the island, within easy access of attractions such as Deception Pass to the north, and the Clinton ferry landing to the south. The best home base: Coupeville.


Coupeville WA is located within the boundaries of Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve, which means its historical buildings and landmarks have been preserved. What remains is a beautiful little town on the shore, with quaint shops, fun eateries, and a lovely pier. We recommend spending at least one full day exploring the island’s many state parks, then at least one more visiting its many farms, agricultural stands, and farm-to-table restaurants.


Every year, Whidbey Island plays host to a free farm tour. Can’t make it? That’s ok: there are Whidbey Island farms perfect for kids at any time. Start at Greenbank, located in Loveland near Coupeville in the heart of the island. Greenbank has its own organic farm school, and 151 acres of public farmland as well as historic farm buildings. Families can visit the gardens, but kids and adults alike will really love checking out the shops onsite. Kids can sample pies, farm cheese, and numerous other artisan, local food items in the farm store.


If you can’t get enough farm store goodness, make 3 Sisters Market your next stop. Operated by 3 Sisters Beef, this shop sells the sisters’ (yes, they exist and we met them!) grass-fed beef and also showcases many other farm fresh products from around the island. It’s located on Holbrook Road in Coupeville.

In the town of Coupeville, visit Lavender Wind Farm, where you can not only buy island-grown lavender products, but kids can get a feel for the many uses of this plant. Sample lavender tea, lavender cookies, and lavender lotions. Across the street, stop by Bay Leaf for an artisan sandwich and a chance to see gourmet food products from France. They also sell Penn Cove Shellfish mussels, which are harvested right on the island.


Stroll through town, and take time to walk the pier and see marine exhibits at the end. Coupeville also has a nice bookstore and toy store.

Where to stay:

In Coupeville, we stayed at Blue Goose Inn, a bed & breakfast in the heart of town. Blue Goose is comprised of two historic Victorian homes (side by side) and has beautifully appointed, comfortable rooms. The sitting rooms are historic but cozy to utilize to read a book or work on your computer (there’s wifi throughout), and the breakfast is served in a sun porch overlooking the water. The food was all homemade and primarily locally-sourced…another good hands-on lesson for kids learning about farm-to-fork eating.


If you have young kids who cannot stay in a B&B room solo (rooms are double occupancy only at Blue Goose), there is a garden suite with kitchen and more space. We also recommend the family-friendly lodge units at Captain Whidbey, an historic inn just outside of town. This property is right on the water, with beautiful grounds and an on-site dining room for a nice meal in.


Have you toured Whidbey Island? What did you like best?