Updated: Sep 20, 2019
1. Community. Most people move to Vashon because of their great appreciation for this special Island . We have a shared interest and passion to make sure Vashon remains unique and special - and this helps build and reinforce our tight-knit community.
Everyone really rallies around each other- we support local farms, businesses and schools, we get involved with our organizations, we celebrate special events together. It truly feels like we have the support of our neighbors and friends here!
2. Commute. Whether you are able to work remotely, find a job on the island, or commute to Seattle, many commutes seems easier and more pleasant from Vashon. With metropolitan areas growing at such a fast rate, commutes to the city can be more than a two-hour drive. Here, you can park your car for free, take the water taxi and be downtown in 23 minutes.
You can also drive onto the ferry and commute to/from West Seattle. Sure, it still takes time to get from the mainland to Vashon, but the driving is minimal. You can hop onto the ferry, catch up on a good book, and even enjoy a glass of wine after a hectic day. We'll take that over sitting in bumper-to-bumper any day!
3. Artist's Retreat. Are you an artist or appreciate the art-world? Vashon is a haven for artists! With thousands of artists here, working with every medium imaginable, you will always be surrounded by creative minds and masterpieces!
Every first Friday of the month, you can partake in the " gallery cruise" uptown. The galleries, restaurants and businesses open their doors until 9pm for everyone to view their art. Twice a year, artists open their studios for the bi-annual studio tour, a 25+ year tradition. You can visit their work spaces (and purchase their art!). There are also a number of classes available for those who are interested in learning more about a certain type of craft. For example, over the winter, we took a glass blowing glass at Brenno Studio. We learned a ton, made glass tree ornaments, enjoyed some wine and cheese, and met some great people! (We highly recommend this class offered a few times a year)
4. Food. Vashon may have a smaller number of restaurants than a big city, but does it matter when every place has delicious food, tasty drinks, and wonderful service? That's pretty much how we feel about our local spots here!
In addition to some amazing traditional restaurants, there's also Iad's Syrian Grill, the Orca Eats food truck and Aeggy's breakfast sandwiches, three local favorites usually found at the farmers market and special events. In the past year alone, we have seen a surge of excellent new bars and eateries offering more choices than ever before – The Wild Mermaid and Seagull Lounge, The Ruby Brink, O Sole Mio Pizza and Bar, Pollard Coffee, Camp Colvos Brewing and Patty’s Kitchen.
5. Schools. Vashon has a phenomenal public school system – from kindergarten through high school. In fact, Vashon High School graduates who move on to University of Washington collectively have one of the highest average GPAs in the state!
Those on the island feel very fortunate for the resources and quality education available to the children here. Many off-island families make the decision to bus their children to and from the island so they can attend the schools here. In addition to primary school, Vashon also has several preschool and daycare options, before and after school care options, and lots and lots of summer school and camp programs!
6. Outdoor activities. Love the outdoors? This is the place for you! Vashon has over 2500 acres of forests, trails and parks, perfect for biking, hiking, horseback riding and exploring!
7. Water activities. Another benefit of living on an island – we’re surrounded by amazing beaches and (of course) water!
There are a plethora of beautiful and expansive beaches on the island so you can always find a nice, private spot to relax for a picnic, walk the dog, host a BBQ or kayak around the harbor.
Our favorite is Lisabeula Beach, where you can catch the most breathtaking sunsets. Looking to do some boating? Quartermaster Harbor is located in the center of the island with places to moor and launch your boat. Vashon Adventures is the place to go for kayak and paddleboard rentals.
8. Entertainment. Vashon offers endless entertainment! Summer concerts in the park, the Strawberry festival in July, the Sheepdog Trials, annual Garden tours, Stupid Bike Night. Ciderfest, holiday parades, and wonderful performances throughout the year!
There's also a local movie theater that shows new and classic movies throughout the year (including theater sing-a-longs!), wine tastings, cider tastings, and beer tasting rooms galore.
9. Affordability compared to Seattle. The real estate market on Vashon has been hot lately; however, nowhere near the growing rate of the city. For what you could get for a condo in Seattle, you could most likely purchase a home on some land.
There are so many different types of homes here- you can live by the water, in the forest, close to the ferries, or close to town!
10. Rural life so close to the city. Vashon offers a peaceful retreat close to the city. There are so many forests, farms, and pasturelands here. You can really carve out your own reprieve on the island, but still be able to get to the city for work, a night out on the town, or a weekend adventure. And when the crowds start to get to you, hop back on the ferry and feel the stress melt away as you pull into the dock:)