A foggy, overcast day greeted Trudi and me on day 2 of our Whidbey Island weekend. Our AirBnB, Kate’s Cottage, was right on Maxwelton Beach. Even though the fog completely obscured our view of Puget Sound, we were excited to venture out and explore more of Whidbey Island.
Day two brought a tour of Langley, a quaint seaside village on the southeast side of Whidbey Island, with seafood eating and wine tasting. We hiked around a Buddhist retreat where we got our Zen on and pondered the complexities of farts. Wrapping up the day with drinking wine on the beach, we headed home on day 3 after exploring Maxwelton Beach.
Brunch and A Morning Walk in Langley
Normally, we would have made breakfast at our AirBnB and drank coffee overlooking the water. But the fog, chilly temperature, and the fact that we hadn’t gone to the grocery store the day before, inspired us to find a cute brunch place in Langley. Useless Bay Coffee Company had plenty of yummy options and a cozy, eclectic atmosphere.
After brunch, we explored Langley’s small downtown area.
Wandering through Music for the Eyes, a shop with all kinds of interesting goods from Central Asia, Trudi and I both randomly pulled cards from a box of quotes and sayings. Here was mine. What do you think?
Getting Deep at Earth Sanctuary
The sun broke through the clouds and we moved on to our next stop, Earth Sanctuary, a 72-acre privately owned nature reserve and Buddhist retreat. The 3 miles of trails were peaceful and easy but kept you interested, meandering through forests, ponds, and meadows accented with Buddhist sculptures and vibes. The entrance fee is $7.
From the Earth Sanctuary parking lot on the west side of the reserve, we started out on Wetland Trail, winding around West Pond and Middle Pond.
On the other side of Middle Pond, we took Celestial Trail which left the wetland area and entered the forest. Everything was dewy and mostly green, with shades of fall popping through.
Chill Out and Crack Up
Coming to the southeast side of the park, we found meadows and clearings dotted with Buddhist sculptures, prayer wheels, and a stupa. We really dug the calm, quiet, Zen-infused atmosphere. But for some reason we kept finding reasons to crack up.
From Hushed to Hilarity
Connecting back to Wetland Trail, we discovered the Fen Stone Circle in a meadow near the bog.
Besides the stone sculptures, there was also evidence of many other meditative, contemplative souls having been there. Small rocks, shiny pebbles, and other trinkets were scattered on the ground around the stones. Looking at a particular flat stone on the ground, Trudi said, “We only FART to meet again??? How is that inspirational?!??”
I said, “PART!! It says “We only PART to meet again!”
How can you keep quiet after an exchange like that? We laughed our way around the bog. Remembering the “Quiet!” sign, we felt sure we’d get scathing looks or even verbally chastised by the couple coming our way. But the guy said, “It sounds really good to hear your laughter!” Wasn’t that nice? I figure, being Zen doesn’t exclude laughing your ass off.
Because Laughter Works Up An Appetite
With brunch hours earlier, and all that walking and laughing, Trudi and I were ready for some seaside sustenance. We headed back to Langley and hit the Saltwater Fish House and Oyster Bar, a tiny restaurant and bar with amazing seafood. We tried an assortment of raw oysters as an appetizer. For entrees, Trudi had mussels and I had the seafood boil. With beer, of course. Everything was delicious!
Wine Tasting On the Water
After an amazing seafood meal, we went next door to Ott & Murphy Wines, a winery with a great view of Puget Sound. It was Sunday afternoon and only a few people were there, friendly locals we chatted with. Trudi and I splurged on a wine tasting of 4 different wines. We bought a bottle to take with us. Later that night, we drank that bottle of wine on the beach in front of our AirBnB while simultaneously listening to the waves crash and Tom Petty on my Bluetooth speaker.
Do We Really Have to Go?
On our last morning on Whidbey Island, the weather was absolutely perfect and we finally got a walk on Maxwelton Beach by Kate’s Cottage. The water was calm and the beach nearly empty. Searching for keepsakes amongst the shells, rocks, and driftwood, we wrung every last second out of the short weekend, right up until we had to leave to catch the ferry back to Seattle.
What’s your favorite island getaway?
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