Head northwest from Coupeville along Madrona Way to take a ride underneath the curvy road’s namesake, the Pacific madrona (a.k.a. madrona) trees, whose distinctive red bark and leathery green leaves line the route. Quite a few summer cottages and cozy homes can be found here, along with the one-of-a-kind Captain Whidbey Inn. Offshore are dozens of floating pens where mussels grow on lines hanging in Penn Cove.
On the northwest corner of Penn Cove, Highway 20 passes scenic Grasser’s Hill, where hedgerows alternate with open farmland. Development restrictions prevent this open country from becoming a mass of condos. Just north of here are the historic San de Fuca schoolhouse and Whidbey Inn.
Another scenic route crawls along Hill Road, two miles south of Coupeville. Follow it through the second-growth stand of Douglas fir trees. It emerges on a high bluff overlooking Admiralty Inlet before dropping to the shoreline at tiny Ebey’s Landing State Park.
© Ericka Chickowski from Moon Washington, 8th edition