Top 10 Best Places to Visit in Washington

08-08-2022 10 7 0 0 Báo lỗi

Washington State attracts millions of tourists each year. These visitors and potential transplants descend upon the state for a variety of reasons. For those that haven't explored the massive appeal of the Evergreen State, from world-class adventures to one-of-a-kind music and artistic scenes, there's no better time than now to find out what makes Washington so special. One trip to Washington will never be enough, and even residing for years won't uncover the entire splendor of the state. Plan your trip with this list of the top best places to visit in Washington State.

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Olympic National Park

From ocean beaches to glaciered mountaintops, Olympic National Park overflows with incomparable scenery. It is one of the best places to visit in Washington. The park covers most of the Olympic Peninsula, and roads only circle the park, never cutting through the park's mountainous heart. While auto-touring is fun, the best way to experience Olympic is by hiking trail. Iconic coastal areas like Ruby and Rialto Beach define the rugged western edge of the park. This stunning slice of Washington coastline is only a short drive away from the oversized trees and abundant foliage found in the Hoh Rain Forest.

Other popular attractions at the park include the snowy peaks of Hurricane Ridge and the welcoming waters of Sol Duc Hot Springs. The hiking trails at Olympic National Park traverse many different landscapes, including a Hall of Mosses and the family-friendly Marymere Falls. The Hoh River Trail is an absolute must-do hike for all ages. For excellent places to spend the night, the campgrounds at Olympic National Park put visitors close to the awe-inspiring scenery presented by this wild western region of Washington.

Official site:

Address: 3002 Mt Angeles Rd, Port Angeles, WA 98362

Phone: +1 360-565-3130

Entrance fee: $30 for a private, non-commercial vehicle, $25 for individuals entering on a motorcycle

Google rating: 4.5/5.0
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Seattle Center and the Space Needle

Of all the top attractions in Seattle, the Space Needle within the Seattle Center is perhaps the most iconic. The Space Needle is an observation tower in Seattle, Washington, United States. Considered to be an icon of the city, it has been designated a Seattle landmark. It was built for the 1962 World's Fair and stands today as a centerpiece of the sprawling Seattle Center. The Space Needle is also one of the most recognizable landmarks in the world and is a treasured Seattle icon. Surrounding the spinning observation deck are more of the city's most iconic attractions, including some of Seattle's best museums.

Alongside the Space Needle, the Seattle Center's 74-acre campus is home to the Monorail, parklands, museums, and restaurants. Among the indoor sightseeing options are the colorful glass artworks at Chihuly Garden and Glass and the Frank O. Gehry designed Museum of Pop Culture. Other fun things to check out at the Seattle Center include a plethora of art installations, various theater and stage accommodations, and multiple garden and fountain settings, and on any sunny day in Seattle, the campus offers an excellent place to stroll outside.

Official site:

Address: 400 Broad St, Seattle, WA 98109

Phone: +1 206-905-2100

Entrance fee: Regular: $32.50 to $37.50; Senior (ages 65+): $27.50 to $32.50; Youth (ages 5-12): $24.50 to $28.50.

Google rating: 4.6/5.0
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San Juan Islands

The San Juan Islands are north of Puget Sound, off the northwest mainland. They are a collection of 174 named islands, with the four largest readily accessible by ferry. These four islands are San Juan Island, Orcas Island, Lopez Island, and Shaw Island. The county seat, and most populous city, Friday Harbor, is on San Juan Island and is often a jumping-off point for bigger adventures. And it is also one of the best places to visit in Washington.

Each main island has a mix of galleries, seafood restaurants, and parks, including San Juan Island National Historic Park. The historic park encompasses both a British and an American Camp that date to the mid-1800s. Here, the park details life at the camp and the conflict known as the Pig War dispute. Popular destinations within the San Juan Islands include Friday Harbor, Eastsound, and Moran State Park, where visitors will find one of the best campgrounds in Washington. Favorite things to do on the San Juan Islands include sea kayaking, whale watching, and dining on local fare.

Official site:

Address: San Juan Islands, WA

Phone: 360-370-5050

Entrance fee: $47 per site.

Google rating: 4.5/5.0
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Mount Rainier National Park

Mount Rainier is an iconic Washington landmark seen from miles in every direction. It's the tallest peak in the state (14,410 feet) and is located within eyesight of Seattle, and the mountain itself is at the center of its namesake national park. Two areas of particularly stunning interest include the Sunrise and Paradise regions of the park. The road to Paradise is open, weather permitting, year-round, allowing visitors to reach high elevations for hiking in summer and snowshoeing in winter. The Sunrise area, on the west side of the park, lives up to its name and is well worth a pre-dawn drive.

Alongside the around-the-mountain Wonderland Trail, other hiking trails at Mount Rainier National Park tour mountain meadows, massive waterfalls, and groves of ancient forests. The country-spanning Pacific Crest Trail also passes through the park's boundaries. Other attractions are within easy distance of the park, including Northwest Trek wildlife park in Eatonville and the Mount Rainier Scenic Railroad in the little town of Elbe. To sum up, this is one of the best places to visit in Washington.

Official site:

Address: 55210 238th Ave. East, Ashford, WA 98304

Phone: +1 360-569-2211

Entrance fee: $30

Google rating: 5.0/5.0
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Seattle Downtown

Occupying a narrow isthmus between the Puget Sound and Lake Washington, Seattle Downtown is a beautiful city and among the most popular places to visit in Washington. The largest city in the Pacific Northwest might be best known for Starbucks, but there is a lot more that Seattle has to offer. It's a large, densely packed city, but downtown Seattle reveals its more relaxed side at the waterfront. Here, piers and parks rim the shoreline. Pike Place Market is the standard draw for tourists, but other historic buildings and venerable institutions add diversity to a visit. Downtown, stop in at Pike Market for fresh produce and fish caught that morning.

You can experience the culture of the city at the Experience Music Project, an incredible museum devoted to music, movies and pop culture. Head to the Space Needle for views over the city and across the Puget Sound, or walk around Green Lake for some fresh air and a glimpse at local life in Seattle. Visitors will likely wish to catch an underground tour near Pioneer Square, or a performance at Benaroya Hall. And back on the waterfront, a sea-level exploration takes you from the Olympic Sculpture Park in the north to the Seattle Aquarium and ferry terminal farther south. The waterfront is also a popular spot to depart on some of the best day trips from Seattle.

Official site:

Address: 1809 7th Ave. Suite 900. Seattle, WA 98101

Phone: 206-623-0340

Entrance fee: adult tickets are $12 and children tickets are $10.

Google rating: 4.7/5.0
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After the town of Leavenworth experienced the bust following a boom in the logging industry, city leaders rallied and decided to change the town's image. Today, the town of Leavenworth proudly recognizes itself as a Bavarian Village, and it's common to see residents wearing lederhosen or blowing a morning serenade on an alphorn. Alongside the encompassing Bavarian theme of this tourist town comes several annual festivals.

Perhaps one of the most spirited is the annual Christmas Lighting Festival, where the nighttime streets transform into something of a surreal snow globe scene. Outdoor recreation is also a main draw to Leavenworth. Craggy Cascade mountains backdrop the town to the west, with iconic destinations like the Icicle Gorge and Alpine Lakes Wilderness nearby. These mountain playgrounds comprise several of Leavenworth's best hiking trails, including the world-famous Enchantments Thru-Hike. Leavenworth is known as one of the best places to visit in Washington.

Official site:

Address: PO Box 287. Leavenworth, WA 98826

Phone: (509) 548-5275

Entrance fee: $10.00-$30.00 per day

Google rating: 4.5/5.0
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North Cascades National Park

The North Cascades Nation Park is one of the most unspoiled tracts of country in the United States. And the national park encompassing these mountains caters to anglers, walkers, and nature lovers. To the north, the park shares a border with British Columbia, Canada. A drive through the park on the North Cascades Scenic Byway is rewarded with some fantastic views. Some of the many highlights of this drive include the Washington Pass Overlook, the aquamarine waters of Ross Lake, and the western-inspired town of Winthrop in the Methow Valley.

Lake Chelan National Recreation Area borders the southern edge of the national park and is home to one of the deepest lakes in the country. It also provides a stunning backdrop for the mountain town of Stehekin (only accessible by foot, boat, or seaplane). Many of the hiking opportunities in the North Cascades are steep, though some of the best hikes in the area also incorporate family-friendly treks with stunning mountain views. For other family-friendly adventures in the North Cascades, head to the North Cascades Institute within the park. This non-profit institution offers educational opportunities and overnight visits.

Official site:

Address: North Cascades National Park, WA

Phone: +1 360-854-7200

Entrance fee: no fee

Google rating: 4.9/5.0
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Puget Sound

On the western border of the state, separating the Olympic Peninsula and Seattle, Puget Sound is a watery region filled with inlets, islands, and unique worlds to discover. Several cities and harbors surround all sides of Puget Sound, offering endless access and places to visit. Some of the things to do in Puget Sound include sea kayaking, whale watching, and visiting the vibrant communities that define the islands. A top spot to visit is Whidbey Island, the largest island in the sound. It's home to Naval Air Station Whidbey Island and the adjacent city of Oak Harbor, located on the north side of the island. The north side of the island is also home to Washington's most visited State Park: Deception Pass State Park.

South of Oak Harbor, the rest of the island has a quieter tone and more rugged landscapes to explore. Here, the Ebey's Landing National Historical Reserve encompasses several seaside state parks and historic farmlands. It also includes the charming community of Coupeville, where fresh seafood restaurants serve meals by the water. For a look into the native cultures that once inhabited the region, the nearby Tillicum Village on Blake Island Marine State Park offers another popular day trip from the city.

Official site:

Address: Puget Sound Lowlands, WA

Phone: 1-888-225-5773

Entrance fee: Youth (18 and under) $3, Individual adult $5, Family $8.

Google rating: 4.5/5.0
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Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument

When Mount St. Helens explosively erupted on May 18th, 1980, it reduced the peak by 1,300 feet and leveled much of the surrounding area. A cloud of ash rose 13 miles into the air. Almost 150 square miles of forest were destroyed, houses were overwhelmed by masses of water and mud, and 57 people lost their lives. The landscape of Mount St. Helens today is still rebounding from the massive event. Today, visitors are encouraged to learn more about the geological processes underway at the Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument.

One of the most popular places to observe and learn about the mountain is the Johnston Ridge Observatory at the end of the Spirit Lake Highway (SR 504). This unique visitor center offers further insight into the eruptive history of the mountain and is a launching point for many of Mount St. Helens best hiking trails. A bucket-list adventure at Mount St. Helens is hiking/climbing all the way up to the remaining crater. This challenging endeavor is usually done from the Climber's Bivouac trailhead on the south side of the mountain. Permits are required for any summit attempt on Mount St. Helens.

Official site:

Address: 42218 NE Yale Bridge Rd, Amboy, WA 98601

Phone: (360) 449-7800

Entrance fee: Ages 6 and younger: Free. Ages 7 to 17: $2.50. Ages 18 and older: $5

Google rating: 5.0/5.0
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Deception Pass State Park

Spanning Whidbey and Fidalgo Islands in Puget Sound, the Deception Pass Bridge is an iconic landmark of the region and civic achievement dating back to the Civilian Conservation Corps. It connects Skagit Bay, part of Puget Sound, with the Strait of Juan de Fuca. A pair of bridges known collectively as Deception Pass Bridge cross Deception Pass. On both sides of this scenic bridge, Deception Pass State Park easily ranks high as one of the best state parks in Washington and also one of the best places to visit in Washington..

The park's recreational facilities include campgrounds, hiking trails, beaches, and tidepools. Several miles of the Pacific Northwest Trail are within the park, most notably including the section that crosses Deception Pass on the Highway 20 bridge. In addition, the Cornet Bay Retreat Center provides cabins and dining and recreation facilities. Cornet Bay offers boat launches and fishing opportunities, while Bowman Bay has an interpretive center that explains the story of the Civilian Conservation Corps throughout Washington state. Activities like tide pooling, hiking, and boating are some of the most popular things to do at the park. Several campsites spread across three campgrounds within the park, facilitating multiple days of adventure. For those interested in passing under the bridge with a boat, knowing the tides is the key to success.

Official site:

Address: 41229 State Route 20, Oak Harbor, Washington

Phone: +1 360-675-3767

Entrance fee: $10/day

Google rating: 4.8/5.0

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