Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Hidden Gem: John Wayne Marina on Sequim Bay

You just don't know when someone is going to offer you a chance to visit a hidden gem. I was telling a small group one evening at a cocktail party about my plans to drive to a peony farm near Sequim, WA that weekend. A gentleman, who to that point had been quiet, starting raving about a little restaurant we should visit at the John Wayne Marina. As always, I entered the recommendation into my phone for safekeeping.

A few days later, we were on the tip of the Olympic Peninsula. We had gorgeous weather and took our car on the ferry from Edmonds to Kingston. We had a picnic lunch at a park on the water before finding the peony farm

By 4 o'clock we were looking for a place to stop and admire the view while we drank from our latte-filled thermos. A nice afternoon, yes?  As we were driving, I noticed a sign pointing down the road that said John Wayne Marina. "That's where we are supposed to eat!," I told Dan. We drove down and around a few turns to this quiet marina. Look at all the shades of blue!
We sat in our 2 camping chairs out on a point of land (they had just taken down chairs from a small wedding held there that afternoon) and soaked up the sun and this view. Look closely and you'll see faint bumps on the horizon (above). Those are the San Juan Islands! I read on the marina website that the film star, John Wayne loved Sequim Bay and thought it was the perfect location for a marina. He donated the land where the marina stands in 1975.

Honestly, we didn't want to leave. We checked Google Maps and determined that it was better to ditch the return by ferry plan and give ourselves the freedom to drive back the 2 1/2 hours when we were ready. So what did we do? We got a reservation for 7 pm at "the little restaurant at the marina." Dockside Restaurant is a very small and very delicious restaurant that I highly recommend. Dan had this beautiful bouillabaisse. 
And I had a rich and bacon and mushroom-studded order of shrimp and grits.
By the time we finished dinner and were ready to drive back to Issaquah, the sailors were all tucked in for the night. We couldn't hear a sound. John Wayne was right; this is the perfect place for a marina. Night night.

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