Destination Maritime: a Day Trip to Dockton

Dockton, Maury Island © 2010, photos by 4Culture staff

Dockton, Maury Island © 2010, photos by 4Culture staff

If you’re looking for a relaxing day trip that doesn’t involve much freeway driving, head for Vashon Island. Take the Fauntleroy ferry from West Seattle to the island, then drive (or bike) south around Quartermaster Harbor to the town of Dockton. Dockton is a featured Destination Maritime site – and the perfect destination for a low-key picnic and quiet day at the beach. At the turn of the 20th century, Dockton was a busy fishing village and active shipbuilding center. Most of that infrastructure is gone now, but it’s not very hard to re-imagine. There’s a great interpretive walking trail with informative markers that leads you in a short loop from Dockton Park past the old boatyard, Piano Row houses, a rare fish net-drying shed, and an aging general store and post office.

Dockton Park is great for kids. You can’t miss is as you drive into town. There are swings for swinging, green lawns for running, and sailboats bobbing on the water. It’s an uncrowded, local delight.

If you’re looking for something more active on Vashon, try these summer events:

2012 Vashon Island 103rd Annual Strawberry FestivalDockton, Maury Island © 2010, photo by 4Culture staff
July 20, 21, 22 in downtown Vashon
Grand Parade – Saturday 11 am
Tom Stewart Classic Car Parade – Sunday 12 noon

Vashon Farmers Market
Saturdays, 10 am-2 pm on the Village Green in downtown Vashon
17519 Vashon Hwy SW, north of Bank Road

Vashon Kayak Center
10 AM to 5PM, Friday through Sunday
8900 SW Harbor Drive, Vashon
Come paddle the sparkling waters of QuarterMaster Harbor!
Drop in for hourly rentals or call to reserve kayaks at 206-463-YAKS (9257)

Want to know more about our maritime heritage? Download a free Destination Maritime brochure to find out about other secret sites all around King County.

Images: Dockton, Maury Island © 2010, photos by 4Culture staff