What to See When You RV - Washington Edition

Posted on August 13, 2018

 

If you have no interest in pristine forests, majestic mountains, sleeping volcanoes, shimmering glaciers, looking-glass lakes, leaping whales, murmuring rain, roaring tides or great coffee, steer your diesel RV clear of Washington State.

There’s no better place to experience the wild. Hiking, skiing, fishing or just admiring the sunset from your RV is a treat for the senses.

Olympic National Park

Mountains, wildflowers, waterfalls, beaches and towering evergreens abound in this gem of the Pacific Northwest. The park spans several diverse ecosystems. One is a rainforest that gets 12 to 14 feet of precipitation per year. The region is known for excellent hiking, fishing, kayaking, and whitewater rafting. If you’re feeling less ambitious, park your Class A motorhome and sail in a pleasure boat to one of the many island getaways off the coast.

Don’t miss these special attractions:

  • Lake Crescent
  • Ruby Beach
  • Sol Duc River
  • Hoh Rainforest

Puget Sound and the San Juan Islands

Several thousand years ago, indigenous peoples paddled canoes through these waters. Today, you’re more likely to hop a ferry to one of the 172 islands that form the archipelago; it extends all the way to Vancouver, British Columbia.

Each of the small offshore communities has its own personality, but it’s a slow-paced, nature-loving lifestyle out here in the Pacific. That’s all the better for spotting bald eagles and hearing the orcas serenade one another. The Olympic Mountains cast a lovely rain shadow to keep things dry and mild in summer.

In addition to Seattle, smaller towns along Puget Sound include Bainbridge Island and Kitsap Peninsula. These are peaceful, scenic communities known for their parks, gardens, local art, equestrian trails, golf courses and tennis courts. The fresh seafood isn’t bad either.

The great dome of the capitol building in Olympia, probably the least bustling state capital in the country, is the tallest masonry dome in North America. Take a free tour to see other highlights like the 5-ton Tiffany chandelier.

Remember, no trip to Puget Sound would be complete without a whale-watching tour.

The Cascades

This magnificent chain, shrouded in mist much of the year, is a mecca for serious hikers with motorhomes.

Load your RV, grab a sturdy pair of boots or snowshoes and head for Mount Rainier or the North Cascades. Mount St. Helens is also open to adventurers, but a permit is required. Snowbirds will appreciate the region's 300 glaciers, but the rugged terrain is not for the faint of heart.

Seattle

Seattle is undeniably one of America’s coolest cities. Downtown is bustling and noisy, but waterfront communities are a pleasant hodgepodge of independent bookstores, vintage boutiques, neighborhood restaurants and, of course, coffee shops. You could spend an entire day watching the vendors toss fish around at Pike Place Market.

Before striking out in your Class C motorhome or gas RV, put these fascinating stops on your itinerary:

  • Space Needle
  • Chihuly Garden and Glass
  • Museum of Pop Culture
  • Pacific Science Center
  • Museum of Flight

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