The Allure of Bainbridge Island Living

The charm of Bainbridge Island, Washington offers an escape during tourist season to those from near and far. But locals know that Bainbridge Island living offers adventure, beauty, and serenity all year long. Vogue Magazine once coined it the Nantucket of the Pacific Northwest. Learn how its allure can easily convince any visitor to imagine Bainbridge Island as ‘home’.

Bainbridge Island Living Windermere

The Bainbridge Ferry © Leo Phillips

Bainbridge Island living offers small-town life and adventure, just 9 miles from Seattle.

Bainbridge Island’s footprint is similar in size to Manhattan but hosts a population currently under 25,000. Slower-paced and sophisticated, it’s also home to 65 miles of hiking trails, dozens of public parks and beaches, and the famous Bloedel Reserve. The 150-acre attraction is regularly named one of the Top-10 Botanical Gardens in the US (its distinguished Japanese Garden is considered one of the best in North America.)

The adventurous landscape of Bainbridge Island is served regularly by ferry from Seattle, the route that many island locals make their daily work commute. A 35-minute ride allows time for breakfast, phone calls, and even a jump-start on emails, all with serene views. It’s quite the opposite experience of sitting in Seattle traffic.

Bainbridge Island Living Shannon DierickxThe island is an excellent place to raise a family.

The quaint, engaged community of Bainbridge Island is an ideal place to raise a family. Safewise ranks Bainbridge Washington’s 6th safest city in 2020. The community also actively supports its highly-regarded public school system. Bainbridge Island School District includes Bainbridge High School, which often ranks high locally and nationally by US News and World Report. It also includes Captain Johnston Blakely and Ordway elementary schools; lists both in Washington’s top-10.  Islandwood, a non-profit environmental learning center, also serves thousands of students each year from its 250-acre Bainbridge Island campus. Its alternative programs have gained national recognition.

Bainbridge Island Living Vesna SomersBainbridge culture is rooted and refined.

Full-time island life doesn’t mean leaving behind fine dining or the arts. From regionally-sourced and James-Beard-awarded Hitchcock, to long-time Kitsap County favorite, Agate Restaurant – the island’s local cuisine is often renowned beyond the region.

Bainbridge Brewing and Bainbridge Organic Distillers keep spirits cheering year-round. Locals and tourists alike can find their coffee fix all around the island. The iconic Pegasus Coffee and the adorable carly’s Rolling Bay Cafe are just a couple of favorites.

The artist community of Bainbridge Island is abundant. The BARN (Bainbridge Artisan Resource Network) keeps local artists and makers connected and inspired. Bainbridge Museum of Art and Bainbridge Performing Arts continuously feature local and indigenous works for all to enjoy, while galleries and studios dot the island throughout.

Bainbridge Island Living Wendy IndvikThe market is resilient and healthy.

Bainbridge is a Pacific Northwest gem with so much to offer. And, now is a great time to make island living a reality.  The local real estate market has fared well through the uncertainties of 2020 thus far. Plus, our Windermere Bainbridge agents are all active community members and highly-skilled experts. Our team has an average of over 16 years in the real estate industry (the range spans from 4 – 37 years). We are passionate locals, and we’re honored to work with nearly half of the market on the island.

Looking to get away from the crowds, but still be close to adventure and city excitement? Bainbridge Island’s 53 miles of shoreline with thousands of waterfront properties awaits.  Let Windermere Bainbridge help you find your island home.

Labor Day plans in the works?
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Posted on August 8, 2020 at 8:39 pm
Windermere Bainbridge Island | Posted in Community, Outdoor Activities, Windermere Bainbridge |

Best Summer Activities on Bainbridge Island

There’s something magical about Bainbridge Island in the summer. It’s no wonder it’s such a popular tourist destination. While it’s nice to know what tourists enjoyed about the area, it’s even better to get the inside scoop from locals. And, many of our real estate agents are 2nd and 3rd generation islanders. So we are happy to share our agents’ favorite Bainbridge Island summer activities.

 If you are planning on visiting or partaking in these activities, please make sure to brush up on the most recent Bainbridge Island Covid-19 rules to make sure you are prepared. Also, look at businesses’ websites or Facebook pages before visiting in person so that you have all the latest information regarding their current operating hours and the protocol they’re following.

Enjoy the Island by Water

What better way to experience island life than by water? After all, we are surrounded by it. Many of our agents are avid kayakers and sailors. 

best summer activities on bainbridge island

Our very own Patti Shannon loves kayaking. Catch her if you can!


If you are itching for some classic summer fun, Kayaking in the Puget Sound is a wonderful activity. Our local SCUBA and kayaking center, Exotic Aquatics has kayak rentals and guided tours at their kayak dock at Waterfront park. Exotic Aquatic will also deliver kayaks to your location, and they also have kayaks for purchase at their store on Madison.

Our Managing Broker, Patti Shannon is an avid kayaker. Keep your eye on the water for a chance to say hi!



Low Tide Beachcombing

If you aren’t familiar with our area, we have incredible swing tides. The beaches double and triple in size, showing off all the wonders hidden by the Puget Sound. Seaglass, shells, and hidden secrets hide beneath our high tides. Don’t forget to skip a rock or two.

Fishing and Crabbing

There’s nothing like a feast of crab and freshly caught fish to show you’re savoring summer on Bainbridge Island. Whether you want to fish or crab with or without a boat is up to you, but always make sure you have a license. Check out more about the optimal times and places to go

Explore on Your Own Two Feet

Bloedel Reserve

The Bloedel Reserve’s mission is “To enrich people’s lives through a premier public garden of natural and designed Pacific Northwest landscapes.” With 150 acres and beautiful trails that weave through forests, meadows, sculpted gardens, this will not disappoint. Walking in Bloedel is special! It’s gorgeous and full of nature’s best and local history!” Says Broker, Diane Sugden.

Fort Ward Park

Looking to go on a nice stroll with a wide, open path free of cars? Fort Ward Park is an excellent spot. “I love the closed road at Fort Ward Park,” says Managing Broker, Susan Grosten. “No cars are allowed in and it is a level road. A lot of young kids practice their new bike riding skills there without fear of traffic. It is like ‘training wheels lane’!” Diane Sugden also recommends a visit to the park. “Walking or biking at Fort Ward is great. It’s fun because there are old wartime bunkers there and the kids love to explore. The beach there is rocky so it’s fun to turn the rocks over and find crabs.”

The Bainbridge Island Japanese American Exclusion Memorial/Pritchard Park

pritchard park summer Bainbridge Island

“Our family, grandkids, and dogs especially like visiting Pritchard Park during the summer,” says Managing Brokers Maureen and Ed Buckley. “You can swim, sit on a sandy beach or a log, and have a beach fire or barbecue.” 

“The Japanese Exclusion memorial at Pritchard Park is a beautiful tribute to the first Japanese American families removed from their homes and put into camps in World War II. In this time of inclusion awareness, this is a good reminder for everyone. It needs to be age-appropriate for the kids, as it is a difficult time in our history, but it is important,” says Susan Grosten.

Have Fun with the Kids

Kids Discovery Museum

There’s no better place for young children than Bainbridge Island’s museum for kids. The Kids Discovery Museum aims to spark children’s curiosity through experiential learning. Right now, they’re offering summer camps and a virtual art room to feature kids’ creations online. They also have at-home activities that promote STREAM (science, technology, reading, engineering, arts, and math). best summer activities on bainbridge island

Pick Fresh Berries

If you’re not from the PNW then you may be surprised to find that there are blackberries all over our island. Enjoy some free fun with the family by seeing who can pick the most and then use them to make delicious pies or jam.

There are also opportunities to pick other types of berries on the island like the strawberry patches at Suyematsu Farms. For the blueberry lovers in your family, visit Bainbridge Island Blueberry Company.

Inspire the Artist in You

BARN (Bainbridge Artisan Resource Network)

BARN’s mission is to “build and support an open, intergenerational community of artisans and makers who are dedicated to learning, teaching, sharing, and inspiring one another with creativity, craftsmanship and community service”. They are now offering a series of online classes and will be reopening when Kitsap County has entered into Phase 3 of Covid-19. Susan Grosten enjoys BARN and what it offers. “It is such a cool and creative place for artists and woodworkers. It was built with community funds. They have great classes including jewelry making, woodworking, writing, creating fabric arts, and using 3D printers.”

Eagledale Pottery Studio

Bainbridge Island is home to one of the best-kept secrets: the Eagledale Pottery Studio. A simple, WWII-era cinderblock building, this pottery studio houses a vibrant community of ceramic hobbyists of all ages and skill levels. They have classes for kids and adults, individuals, and school groups.

There are so many great summer activities here on Bainbridge Island. Whatever you decide to do, don’t forget to wear your mask, follow the Bainbridge Island COVID-19 rules, and take pictures of all the fun you’re sure to have. We hope you have a healthy, happy summer!

Posted on July 7, 2020 at 5:55 pm
Windermere Bainbridge Island | Posted in Community, Outdoor Activities | Tagged , , , , , ,