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Outdoor Activities in Washington

With endlessly scenic views of the Pacific Northwest, there is an abundance to experience when it comes to Washington State outdoors. With deserts and rainforests, wetland estuaries and alpine meadows, there is so much natural beauty to explore. Below, find out more about the types of outdoor activities you can schedule and the best views in Washington, whether you are a determined resident or a motivated visitor of the Evergreen State.

Types of Outdoor Activities

The great outdoors of Washington State offers a vast terrain on which to do sport, as well as leisure activities. There is much to be done on Washington State’s two major mountain ranges, the Olympic Mountains and the Cascade Range. In addition, the Pacific Coast offers extensive tidal waterways, along with island perimeters on 3,000 miles of coastline. Highlight waterways include glacier-fed rivers, scenic reservoirs and freshwater lakes. In order to experience all of the land’s riches, bookmark some of the following:

  • On land:
    • Biking
    • Hiking
    • Climbing
    • Fishing
    • Golfing
    • Horseback riding
  • By sea:
    • Boating
    • Canoeing
    • Fishing
    • Surfing
    • Waterskiing
    • Windsurfing
    • Scuba diving
    • Swimming
  • In snow:
    • Skiing
    • Snowboarding
    • Inner tubing
    • Snowshoeing
    • Sledding

An endless amount of notable excursions exist, depending on what your interests are. For instance, you can go rafting and kayaking in the White Salmon River rapids or whale watching in the San Juan Islands.

Scenic Byways

Whether you are interested in some gorgeous photo opportunities, or would just like to experience some of nature’s most breathtaking views in the United States, there are more than two-dozen scenic byways to visit. Consider mapping out a road trip along the Pacific Coast Highway and into hidden nooks and gems, looping into forests, cascades and valleys, and winding out into wine country. On your travels, you can bookmark these scenic byways:

  • Cascade Loop
  • Cascade Valleys
  • Cape Flattery
  • Chinook Pass
  • Columbia River Gorge
  • Chuckanut Drive
  • Coulee Corridor
  • Lewis and Clark Trail
  • International Selkirk Loop
  • Mountains to Sound Greenway
  • Baker
  • San Juan Ferry
  • Sherman Pass
  • Pend Oreille Valley
  • Palouse
  • Pacific Coast
  • Okanogan
  • North Pend Oreille
  • North Cascades
  • Stevens Pass Greenway
  • Whidbey Island Scenic Isleway
  • Strait of Juan de Fuca Highway
  • White Pass
  • Yakima Canyon
  • Yakama

Washington’s Natural Beauty

If you are a lover of all things natural beauty, the Evergreen State provides an endless array of outdoor splendor. If you are a true adventurer, you will be thrilled to know that natural beauty lies in more than 120 state parks, all of which you can explore to your heart’s content. Whether you are just looking for a day trip, or you prefer an overnight camping stay, take in endless wilderness and preserves in Washington. If you are a lover of wildlife, it is vital you catch views of everything from whales to birds, along with deer, cougars, bears, foxes and otters during your visit.

Note some of the most popular sites for natural beauty in the state, including:

  • Mount Rainier.
  • Hoh Rainforest.
  • Horse Heaven Hills.
  • Dry Falls.
  • Hurricane Ridge.
  • Ruby Beach.
  • Salt Creek County Park & Crescent Bay.
  • Oyhut Wildlife Recreation Area.
  • Mud Mountain Dam.
  • Blue Mountains.
  • Jetty Island.
  • Second Beach.
  • Sunrise Visitors Center.