Like fresh shellfish? Make a pilgrimage to what Washingtonians might call Mussel Beach — the pleasingly situated little Whidbey Island burg of Coupeville, the second-oldest town in the state.

Like fresh shellfish? Make a pilgrimage to what Washingtonians might call Mussel Beach — the pleasingly situated little Whidbey Island burg of Coupeville, the second-oldest town in the state.

The town overlooks Penn Cove, home to America’s oldest and largest mussel farm, which ships the black-shelled bivalves near and far (and this is about as near as you can get). For your own dose of salty freshness, head for rustic Toby’s Tavern (www.tobysuds.com) or the modern Front Street Grill, which offers 11 recipes for mussels, with coconut-green curry being the star (frontstreetgrillcoupeville.com).

Take the self-guided walking tour of historic structures, ranging from the circa-1852 home of founding father Thomas Coupe to the 1889 Methodist Parsonage. Print out a detailed guide from the Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve website: www.nps.gov/ebla/upload/WalkingTourPanels.pdf
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Getting there: Washington State Ferries connects to Whidbey Island from Mukilteo, 26 miles north of Seattle. Coupeville is 28 miles from the ferry landing via Highway 525.

Information: 360-678-5434 or www.centralwhidbeychamber.com

Brian J. Cantwell: 206-748-5724 or bcantwell@seattletimes.com