Visit San Juan Island

18 Packing Tips for Your Family Trip

Updated June 2017

Do you regularly bring home tons of clean, untouched clothes from your trips? Are you at a total loss when it comes to decide how many outfits to bring for the kids on an island trip? Do you have trouble deciding what to bring when both sea kayaking and going to a fancy restaurant are on the menu for your weekend getaway? If you are visiting San Juan Island for a night from Seattle or for a week from Spain, we have some Earthbox guest-tested, Island specific packing tips for you.

  1. Make a List

Write down all of the things you can’t live without or you can’t buy: prescription glasses, medicine, cell charger, Snuggles, the stuffed rabbit. Then write down the adventures you have planned and the clothes to go with. Keep in mind, you can buy anything you forget, except for those items on the first part of your list.

  1. Choose the Right Bag

If you are coming for just a few days, bring the kids’ clothes in a smaller backpack, unpack it once you are at your hotel, then use it for day trips while you are hiking or biking. If you are walking on to the ferry or taking a seaplane, choose a backpack or suitcase with rollers over a duffel bag. Friday Harbor is hilly and having your things on your back or on wheels will be more comfortable.

  1. Know your Weather & Evening Temperatures

Check the forecast and be prepared for fast changes in weather. San Juan Island is in a rain shadow. We get about a third of the rain that Seattle gets. Our climate is temperate with cool nights. If you are out on the water, whale watching or kayaking, you will feel a breeze, even on hot, still days. If you are a bit of an atmospheric buff, check out our local Cliff Mass’ Weather Blog.

Local, organic Pelindaba Lavender Products at the Earthbox Inn & Spa on San Juan Island

  1. Know what we have here at the Hotel

We at the Earthbox Inn & Spa offer body care products from the local Pelindaba Lavendar Farm. Your shampoo, lotion and conditioner will have traveled less than you to get to your room. We also have hair dryers, irons & ironing boards upon request, ear plugs and in case you forgot yours: toothbrushes, toothpaste & razors. We offer Pack’nPlays and futons for our littler guests.

The pool at the Earthbox Inn & Spa on San Juan Island

  1. Go for a Swim & do Laundry

We at the Earthbox Inn & Spa have an indoor pool, sauna, hot tub and exercise room, as well as guest laundry facilities. Save some space in your suitcase by doing a little laundry on your trip, especially when travelling with smaller kids. Set some time aside for fun in the pool while your clothes are in the washer and dryer.

  1. Layers, it’s the Pacific Northwest

Sometimes we have virtually every type of weather in just one day on the island: sun, rain, hail, wind, fog, in no particular order. Design your outfits around layers. Think: tank, Tee, light sweater, flannel shirt, hoodie, wind breaker.