Blaine is a city in the Northwest Cascades region of Washington (state). It is notable as the major land border crossing between this part of Washington and the Lower Mainland region of British Columbia, Canada. It straddles Interstate 5 which terminates in Blaine, and is on the coast of the Pacific Ocean.
Officially incorporated in 1890, Blaine (aka "The Peace Arch City") was first settled in the mid-1800s and named after James G. Blaine, secretary of state and presidential candidate.
Blaine is a border town and the northern terminus of Interstate 5 which becomes BC-99 as one crosses into Canada. Blaine is also the most Northwest town in the Lower 48 States.
The Department of Homeland Security has 2 border inspection stations, Peace Arch Crossing to the West for passenger vehicles & the "Truck Crossing" to the East for both commercial entry and passenger vehicles. A great deal of Blaine's economy is based on legal trade across the Canadian border and Blaine also has a long history of smuggling.
The estimated population is under 5,000.
Blaine has 2 large marinas with hundreds of boats. Salmon, crab, and other seafood are widely available.
Blaine is the location of the two primary ports of entry between this part of Washington and the Lower Mainland region of British Columbia, Canada. See the Get in – By car section of the Northwest Cascades article for details.
Blaine has a small airport for general aviation. After years of debate about whether to keep the airport or use the land for other development, it looks like Blaine has finally decided to shut it down. As of July 2008, it is still open.
The nearest major commercial airport is Bellingham International Airport (BLI). Vancouver International Airport (YVR), while across the border in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, Canada, offers a much wider range of destinations.
- Whatcom Transportation Authority. There is a limited local service bus between Blaine and Bellingham (weekdays only) on Route 70X. On Saturdays the only option is very limited service from Route 55, running between Blaine and the Cordata Station in northern Bellingham (if coming from downtown Bellingham, take Route 232 to Cordata and transfer to the 55).
- Peace Arch State Park (Go north on 2nd Street until the loop at A Street.), ☎ +1 360 332-8221, e-mail: PeaceArch@parks.wa.gov. A grand white arch in a grassy lawn marks the official US-Canada international border. On either side of the park are frequently lines of cars crawling slowly through the border checkpoint lines. You can enter the park from either the US or Canadian side, and walk all around it, but you must leave by the side you entered, or else formally pass through the border checkpoint. Free.
There are many biking & walking trails, including along Boundary Bay. Blaine is a major birdwatching area. There is a casino in Blaine, a library, and various small businesses.
- Blackberry House Cafe, 321 H Street, ☎ +1 360 332-5212, e-mail: email@example.com. Cafe with sandwiches and soups for lunch. Free wireless internet.
- Smuggler's Inn Bed & Breakfast, 2480 Canada View Dr, ☎ +1 360 332-1749, fax: +1 360 332-1749, e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Check-in: 3PM-9PM, check-out: 11:30AM. Eight guest rooms in a three-story Victorian house. $100-350/night.
|Routes through Blaine|
|Vancouver ← White Rock ← Becomes ← (Peace Arch Park) ←||N S||→ Ferndale → Seattle|
|Vancouver ← Surrey ← Becomes ← (Truck & bus crossing) ←||N S||→ END|