5 Kid Friendly Hikes On South Whidbey Island – a few of our favorite hikes to get out into. And best of all? These are all great hikes for the off-season. Central and South Whidbey have the Olympic Rain Shadow in most parts, so are often much drier than areas around. I’ve noted which hikes have additional items such as playgrounds, and wether or not it requires parking fees.
The Westling Loop isn’t wilderness, not by any means. It sits between Langley and Upper Clangley (our name for upper Clinton, where Ken’s Korner sits). The trails are accessed through the vast public park (Castle Park) that sits between all the schools on Maxwelton Road. The trails are well taken care of and is a great system to let children run and enjoy the woods. And … it has a huge playground, covered picnic tables and bathrooms. Fee Free.
South Whidbey State Park is sadly an under used state park. Not because it isn’t a neat place, rather that the state has done a great job in ignoring it in the past decade. The campground is closed due to risk from the forest, and the access to the beach hasn’t been around in years. There is however many trails on both sides of the road that cuts through the park. Easily accessed is the South Forest Discovery Loop. It offers gently rolling trail, with peek a boo views of the Salish Sea below. The park is only a few miles outside of Freeland, which is also home to a great park on Holmes Harbor, Freeland Park & Beach, to check out! Must have a daily pass or a Discovery Pass for State Parks.
The Trillium Community Forest – The Level Loop. It is a trail almost anyone can hike, be it in a wheelchair or a stroller. It isn’t a long hike, but it is peaceful and has extensions for longer hikes. It’s a great hike to learn about how a small group of citizens helped save a ridge from becoming a golf course. This short loop is worth the drive and finding it on the map. Fee Free.
Greenbank Farm sits on the edge of South and Central Whidbey, but I think of it as ours as it is so close to us. It’s a gem many don’t know about. Ample parking, wide open rambling. The “trail” system is paths cut into the fields to follow. The only downside is it is a leash-less dog park. However there are often not many dogs there, and only once I have been jumped on. People are supposed to have their dogs under control. But for the views, it is so worth it. Next door is another public area, which is wooded forest to hike through. Find a playground, bathrooms, master gardens, and shops to check out – including Whidbey Pies. A lot to do in a relaxed manner. Fee Free.
￼Meerkerk Gardens has an entry fee, which is worth the few dollars they ask for to support this non-profit land. It’s a double bonus: safe trails to wander along, plus a lot for adults to enjoy while there. Find a gazebo with chairs – and an amazing view of Holmes Harbor, picnic tables, and more. It is very close to the village of Greenbank, where there is an eatery and store for picnic goodies.