James Island Marine State Park

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James Island Marine State Park sits low on the horizon, small and unassuming next to its neighbors in the San Juan archipelago. This tiny marine state park, accessible only by boat, may be the ideal retreat.

Remote as it seems, James Island is not to be missed. Featuring emerald coves, forested trails, spectacular views and an isthmus with two white sand beaches, the park offers only 13 primitive campsites – three for travelers arriving by human- or wind-powered watercraft and 10 sites clustered in two areas on opposite sides of the isle, and moorage is available on both sides.

You've worked hard to get here. Now it is time to relax and experience the lightly touched beauty of this watery paradise.

Park features

James Island Marine State Park is a 581-acre, marine camping and moorage park with 12,335 feet of saltwater shoreline on Rosario Strait. Much of James Island has been designated a Natural Forest Area and is closed to public access, except for designated recreational areas and 1.5 miles of high bluff trails with extraordinary views.

  1. Activities
  2. Boating
  3. Camping
  4. History
  5. Maps

Picnic & day-use facilities

West Cove has a composting toilet, while East Cove has one pit toilet.



  • 1.5 miles of hiking trails

Water activities & features

  • Boating
  • Crabbing
  • Diving
  • Fishing (saltwater)
  • Oyster harvesting

Additional information

  • James Island offers short hikes with dramatic views from high bluffs. Hikers with children should be aware of fall hazards due to rocky high banks and cliffs, and surrounding waters that are deep and swift.
  • A recreational license is required for fishing and shellfish harvesting at Washington state parks. For regulations, fishing season information, or to purchase a recreational license, visit the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife.
  • San Juan Islands state park brochure (PDF).