Come to Coupeville
The heart of Ebey's Landing National Historical Reserve
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Top Attractions:Rosie the Whale
Coupeville Arts & Crafts Festival
Ebey's Landing Historical Reserve
Coupeville Photo Tour
Walk the WharfThe historic Coupeville Wharf is the icon that symbolizes the town's history as a once major seaport. It now houses shops, Local Grown (Island food products, marine supplies, and great espresso), Long's Harbor Gift Shop, Kim's Cafe, and skeletons of Rosie the gray whale and Rudy the Dall's Porpoise.
Witness RestorationThe Au Sable Institute's Smith Prairie Reserve project is preserving and restoring a natural prairie just outside Coupeville.
Quick List of SitesWhen you observe the area through the eyes of an artist, you see these popular subjects for painting and photography:
· Admiralty Head Lighthouse · Blockhouses · Coupeville Wharf · Cows and calves · Bluff or driftwood on the beach at Ebey's Landing · Ebey's Prairie · False front buildings on Front Street · Farmhouses and barns · Ferry House, where early travelers rested after crossing from the Olympic Peninsula · Fields of squash, beets, cabbage, barley, and feed crops · Fort Casey gun batteries · Grasser's Lagoon and Penn Cove · Great blue heron on the shore of Crockett Lake · Keystone-Port Townsend Ferry · Methodist Church, founded 1853 · Mount Baker view from Coupeville waterfront · Rhododendron in bloom (late March-early May) · San de Fuca mussel dock · San de Fuca schoolhouse · Sunnyside Cemetery · Victorian homes.
Search for the PioneersA stroll through Sunnyside Cemetery reveals headstones of the founding families of the area. On a clear day, the adjacent prairie overlook offers views of Mt. Baker, Mt. Rainier, as well as much of the Cascade and Olympic ranges.
HistoryHistoric and nature preservation are cornerstones of Coupeville. The town is the heart of Ebey's Landing National Historical Reserve, the first such unit of the National Park Service dedicated to preserving and protecting the rural character of this enchanting area, encompasses much of central Whidbey Island. Major portions of the area are protected by conservation-oriented private parties, The Nature Conservancy, The Trust for Public Land, and the National Park Service.
The Island County Historical Society Museum is an excellent place to get your bearings and get your map to a self-guided house tour. There are about 50 structures in Coupeville on the National Register of Historic Places.
View farms with historic traditions on the Whidbey Island Farm Tour.
ParksStart in Town Park, where you can catch one of our Concerts on the Cove on a summer afternoon, or walk the trail down to the Penn Cove beach. A waterfront footpath from Town Park leads through the shopping area to Captain Thomas Coupe Park and the town boat launch.
Fort Casey State Park is a showcase for remains of a coastal artillery battery that included disappearing guns and mortars. It offers a campground, picnic area, the Admiralty Head Lighthouse, driftwood-strewn beaches, and an underwater park for SCUBA divers. The Admiralty Head Lighthouse is a maritime landmark. Climb the steps up the tower for a sweeping vista of Admiralty Inlet, the Whidbey Island shoreline, and the Olympic Peninsula.
" Fort Ebey State Park offers panoramic views of the Olympic Peninsula, Strait of Juan de Fuca, and Vancouver Island. Notable natural attributes are "kettles" left behind by the retreating glacier that shaped Whidbey Island geography, and dense second-growth forest. Kettles Trail connects the park to Coupeville.
Stroll Meerkerk Rhododendron Gardens to enjoy a memorable display. Continue at Rhododendron Park, which offers 140 acres laced with trails through wild rhododendron.
FloraPlants common to central Whidbey woodlands include bald hipped rose, big leaf rhododendron, bracken fern, Douglas fir, grand fir, Oregon grape, ocean spray, red alder, red elderberry, salal, snowberry, sword fern, western hemlock, western red cedar, western white pine, and willow. Our saltwater lagoons and adjacent wetlands are home to cattail, orchard grass, pickleweed, slough sedge, silver cinquefoil, and hard stem bulrush. On the prairie, you may spot American vetch, bare-stem parsley, camas lily, chocolate lily, Columbia lily, Henderson's shooting star, Hyacinth brodiea, Nootka rose, Prairie smoke, Roemer's fescue, showy fleabane, snowberry, tall Oregon grape, two-colored lupine, and wooly sunflower. Around the beaches and bluffs, look for California oat grass, dune wild rye, English plantain, gum weed, Northern saitas, purple snake root, rock weed, sea lettuce, sea shore lupine, sea shore red fescue, tomcat clover, and wing kelp.
FaunaDepending on the season and location, you may spot yellowlegs, western sandpiper, phalarope, ruddy duck, red-breasted sapsucker, rough-legged hawk, rufous hummingbird, western grebe, surf scoter, loon, oystercatcher, Peregrine falcon, merlin, harrier, bald eagle, northern shrike, marbled murrelet, goldeneye, turnstone, kingfisher, gulls, rhinoceros auklet, black turnstone, cormorant, and great horned owl.
While you're here, watch for black-tail deer, red fox, coyote, rabbits, Douglas and gray squirrels.