The 15 best places to visit in Washington State

 

Built in 1922 in the town of Zillah, south central Washington, is the Teapot Dome Gas Station, a former service station in the shape of a teapot. Constructed as a roadside attraction, this national historic site was built to remind people of the Teapot Dome Scandal that rocked the presidency of Warren G. Harding, when his aides were convicted of leasing government oil reserves in, among other places, Teapot Dome, Wyoming.

15. Teapot Dome Gas Station

 

In the town of Snoqualmie, east of the city of Seattle, is one of the countries biggest waterfalls, Snoqualmie Falls. Central to the culture and beliefs of the indigenous people of the area, this 82 metre (268 ft) single drop waterfall has become one of Washington's primary attractions. 

14. Snoqualmie Falls

 

Built in 1967 in the city of Everett, directly north of Seattle is the enormous Boeing Everett Factory, when measured by volume it is the largest building in the world. Despite being a working factory, it is possible to purchase tickets for a guided tour of this mammoth building.

13. Boeing Everett Factory

 

Completed in 1928 in the state capital, Olympia, is the ​Washington State Capitol Building, the most iconic building in the Capitol Historic District and a grand example of early 20th century architecture. From the historical district of Capitol Campus it is possible to view the Olympic Mountains, Puget Sound, Mount Rainier, the Capitol Dome and Capitol buildings on the hill, some of the most valued views in the State.

12. Washington State Capitol Building

 

West of Seattle, across the fjord like Pacific Ocean inlet of Puget Sound is the small city of Poulsbo, founded by a Norwegian immigrant in the 1880's who likened the landscape to his home country. Sometimes known as the Little Norway or the Viking City, downtown Poulsbo maintains a Scandinavian theme as a reminder of its early Scandinavian founders.

11. Poulsbo

 

Directly east of Seattle in the central Washington scrablands is a major depressed precipice known as Dry Falls. Formed in the last ice age, catastrophic flooding channeled water through the Grand Coulee and over the 120 metre (400 ft) rock face. Its estimated that the falls were five times wider than Niagara and had ten times the flow of all the current rivers in the world combined. Today this massive depression makes for one of the most unusual terrains in Washington. 

10. Dry Falls

 

Directly east of Seattle on the way to Dry Falls is the village of Leavenworth, a Bavarian styled village set beautifully in the Cascade Mountains. Inspired and assisted by the Danish town of Solvang in California, Leavenworth followed example and adopted a German town theme. Made up of Alpine styled buildings and German food restaurants, the town also has a Nutcracker Museum and holds an annual Oktoberfest.

9. Leavenworth

 

In the far south east of Washington State within a geologically unique area of scrabland is the Palouse Falls State Park, named after the parks main feature, Palouse Falls. Set among scenic terrain, this picturesque waterfall has a single drop of 60 metres (128 ft) into the plunge pool below. 

8. Palouse Falls

 

East of Seattle, north of the village of Leavenworth is the 7,022 square kilometre (2,711 square mile) Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, extending around 220 kilometres (137 miles) along the eastern slopes of the Cascade mountain range. The national forest is made up of high peaks, alpine lakes and of course a large alpine forest.

7. Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest

 

In the far north of Washington State, straddling British Colombia across the Canadian border to the north and Mount Rainier National Park in the south, is the vast Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest. Covering an enormous 6,977 square kilometres (2,693 square miles), the forest extends 230 kilometres (140 miles) along the western slopes of the Cascade mountain range. Named after the 3,286 metre (10,781 ft) glacial active volcano of Mount Baker, the forest is home to more glaciers and snowfields than any national forest outside of Alaska. It is a perfect landscape of wide valleys, expansive alpine forests and high peaks.

6. Mt. Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest

In the north west of Washington State, situated on the Pacific Ocean inlet of Puget Sound is the seaport city of Seattle, the largest city in Washington and the 15th largest city in the United States. Officially nicknamed the Emerald City in reference to its lush evergreen forests, it is also referred to as the Queen City, Rain City or Gateway To Alaska. The birthplace of Bill Gates and Jimi Hendrix, Seattle is best known for its iconic skyline, dominated by its most famous building, the Space Needle.

With so much to see, click here for the Must See Places In Seattle...

5. Seattle

 

In the far north of Washington State, straddling British Colombia across the Canadian border to the north, encompassing the exceptionally rugged and scenic expanse of the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest is the North Cascades National Park. Covering an area of some 2,023 square kilometres (781 square miles), the park was created to protect the most rugged and impressive mountain peaks of the North Cascade mountain range. As with other protected areas in the region, the terrain is one of high rocky mountains, large glacial valleys, great lakes, vast areas of wilderness and huge alpine forests. North Cascades National Park is cited as having the highest degree of flora biodiversity of any US national park.

4. North Cascades National Park

 

In the north west of the state, west of Seattle on the Olympic Peninsula is the 3,733 square kilometre (1,441 square mile) Olympic National Park. Made up of four distinct regions, these are the Pacific Coastline, alpine forests, temperate rainforests and the forests of the drier east side. From the rugged coastline with adjacent forests, to the centre of the park where the Olympic Mountains are topped with snow and massive ancient glaciers, to the eastern drier mountains with its exposed craggy ridges. Regarded to be a place of outstanding natural scenery with untouched pristine ecosystems, Olympic National Park has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

3. Olympic National Park

 

In the south west of the state, north of the city of Portland, Oregon, is the Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument, established two years after the catastrophic eruption of 1980. Visitors can drive to Windy Ridge, 6.4 kilometres (4 miles) from the crater for great views and to start the many trails that lead off towards one of the worlds most famous volcanoes.

2. Mount St. Helens National Monument

 

East of the state capital, Olympia, is the 956 square kilometre (369 square mile) Mount Rainier National Park, named after the 4,392 metre (14,411 ft) stratovolcano that rises abruptly from the surrounding landscape. One of the earliest designated national parks in the United States, the terrain is one of valleys, waterfalls, sub-alpine meadows, old forests and over 25 glaciers. Mount Rainier is circled by a 90 square kilometre (35 square mile) hiking trail known as the Wonderland Trail, regarded to be one of the finest treks in the country. As well as offering the best views of the mountain, the trail also takes in lakes, several glaciers and snowfields. Highlights of the park include Carbon Glacier, the largest by volume in the country outside of Alaska.

1. Mount Rainier National Park

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