The best places to visit in Washington state all have one thing in common: a stunning coastline. From the islands of Puget Sound to the fjords of the northwest, these coastal getaways prove that there is more to this state than rain and pandas.
If you’ve ever driven the Pacific Coast Highway, you know the best road trip is often a coastal one. The natural beauty and rugged landscape of coastal regions are what make them so special. It’s not surprising that coastal areas have some of the most beautiful landscapes in the country.
From small seaside towns to remote islands accessible only by boat, here are some of the best places to visit in Washington State.
Port Townsend: A Hidden Gem in the Pacific Northwest
Port Townsend is a hidden gem in the Pacific Northwest, but it’s no secret to travelers who have discovered this seaside town. A Victorian-era community built on the timber industry, the town has long since repositioned itself as a cultural and artistic hub. Now, Port Townsend is a place where tourists can indulge in artistic and cultural events, stroll quaint streets lined with galleries, and hike trails through old-growth forests. Port Townsend is also a popular stop for history buffs. Fort Worden, a coastal fort built in the late 19th century, is now a state park where visitors can take self-guided tours, explore the fort’s tunnels, and hike on the coastline.
Discovery Island is a wildlife refuge and nature park that is accessible only by boat. The island is a wildlife refuge for birds and marine animals, including harbor seals and sea otters. The island is also home to the threatened bald eagle. Visitors can enjoy walks through the 6,000-acre island, observing sea otters and birds.
They can also take a tour by kayak or take a ride out on a nature boat. Exploration of the island includes views of the remarkable landscape, including dramatic forests, rugged outcroppings, and freshwater lakes.
San Juan Islands
The San Juan Islands is a collection of islands in the U.S. state and is one of the most popular places to visit in the Washington States, located just north of Seattle. Spanning a total of about, the San Juan Islands are among the largest islands on the Pacific Coast and include some of the state’s most popular vacation destinations. The islands were formed when two tectonic plates collided millions of years ago, forming a chain of volcanoes, mountains, and inlets that have been shaped by centuries of erosion and deposition.
Today, the San Juan Islands offer visitors a wide range of outdoor activities, including hiking, kayaking, and camping. Popular sights include Friday Harbor and Lopez Island, which are home to art galleries and natural attractions including forests, lagoons, and beaches.
Mt. Rainier National Park
Mt. Rainier National Park is one of the most popular places to visit in Washington State, and it’s no secret why.
This park, located in the Cascade Mountains, is home to the highest peak in Washington, Mt. Rainier. The park is known for its immense forests, alpine valleys, and the enormous glaciers that cover Mt. Rainier. Visitors can enjoy a variety of recreational activities in Mt. Rainier National Park, including hiking, mountain climbing, wildlife watching, and camping.
There are several hiking trails in the park, including the challenging trail to the summit of Mt. Rainier.
Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument
Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument is a desert ecosystem where visitors can explore the Saguaro cactus, which grows very slowly and can take up to 80 years to mature.
In addition to the towering Saguaro cactus, Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument is also home to a variety of animals, including desert birds and reptiles, such as the Gila monster. Because of the park’s desert landscape, visitors to Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument can enjoy activities such as hiking, bird watching, and wildlife viewing.
The park also offers a scenic drive where visitors can explore the desert landscape.
Olympic National Park
Olympic National Park is a stunning mix of sea, mountains, rainforest, and wildflowers. The park is home to stunning sea cliffs, sandy beaches, and imposing mountains. Visitors to Olympic National Park can hike the trails through old-growth forests and explore the rugged coastline.
There are also several scenic drives in the park, including the famous Hurricane Ridge Drive, which offers stunning views of the Olympic Mountains. Olympic National Park is known for its abundant wildflowers in the spring, including the breathtaking wildflower bloom.
Washington State is filled with beautiful beaches, rugged mountains, and lush forests. From the capital city of Seattle to the small towns along the coast, this state is a must-visit for any traveler. Whether you’re in the mood for the big city or the quiet solitude of nature, Washington State has something to offer everyone.
The best places to visit in Washington State are just waiting to be discovered. These coastal getaways prove that there is more to this state than rain and pandas. From small seaside towns to remote islands accessible only by boat, here are some of the best places to visit in Washington State.