From the mountains of the Cascades, to the rainforests of the Olympic Peninsula and the rugged Pacific Coast, Washington State has a never-ending source of amazing places to explore, camp and stay. Each weekend, Washingtonians flock to campgrounds and lodges, small cabins and quirky hotels, all in hopes of a memorable and amazing time.

Capitol City Honda sponsorWhile most places you can stay will offer similar experiences, there are eight amazing destinations that are as perfect and unique as the Pacific Northwest itself. These eight campgrounds and lodges will inspire outdoor adventures, as well as give you a stunning and beautiful place to enjoy 

1. Kalaloch Campground

Find hidden treasures at Kalaloch.

Kalaloch Campground
Distance from Olympia: 129 Miles
Campsites: 161 Campsites
Reservations: http://www.recreation.gov/

Out on the Washington Coast, in Olympic National Park, one of the most stunning campgrounds in all of America is waiting for your annual camping trip. High on the bluffs above the tide pools and crashing waves of the Pacific Ocean, Kalaloch Campground is home to amazing day hikes and the absolute best sunsets around. Kalaloch is unique, since it provides access to some of the most iconic and beautiful stretches of coast and easy hiking destinations that will rejuvenate your love for the wilderness of the Pacific Northwest.

2. Fort Worden Campground

Discover history and beauty while camping at Fort Worden State Park. Photo credit: Douglas Scott.

Fort Worden Camping
Distance from Olympia: 99 Miles
Campsites: 80 Campsites in Two Campgrounds
Reservations: http://fortworden.org

Located just a short walk from downtown Port Townsend, camping at Fort Worden gives you access to gorgeous sunrises, spectacular sunsets, miles of hiking and a chance to explore an old fort’s harbor defense bunkers that were built to protect Puget Sound from the late 1800s to the end of World War II. The Fort has two campgrounds, letting you stroll along the beach or explore the forests and bunker areas on the bluffs above. This is a unique area to camp, as it is one of the few state parks in Washington that has this much infrastructure, history and majestic vistas. History buffs will love Fort Worden’s museums, while families can find endless opportunities for a fun night along the Strait of Juan de Fuca and Salish Sea.

3. Deer Park Campground

Stargaze and ridge walk while camping at Deer Park in Olympic National Park. Photo credit: Douglas Scott.

Deer Park Campground
Distance from Olympia: 123 Miles
Campsites: 14
Reservations: No; sites are first-come, first-serve

The prettiest (and only) high-alpine campground in Olympic National Park, Deer Park seemingly sits atop the world. There are just 14 sites with no running water that sit on this exposed ridge, but the views make up for the lack of infrastructure. Staring from your tent to the interior of the Olympic Mountains or the beauty of the Salish Sea and Strait of Juan de Fuca, the campsites at Deer Park let you witness both sunrise and sunset from the comfort of your sleeping bag. Be prepared for an amazing night full of unrivaled stargazing, followed by a morning of hiking the most beautiful ridge lines on the Olympic Peninsula. Keep in mind that this is a seasonal campground, so it won’t open until the snow has melted.

4. Mowich Lake Campground

Explore the forgotten corner of Mount Rainier National Park when camping at Mowich Lake. Photo credit: Douglas Scott.

Mowich Lake Campground
Distance from Olympia: 72 Miles
Campsites: 10 Campsites
Reservations: No; sites are first-come, first-serve

Off in the forgotten northwest corner of Mount Rainier National Park, the small Mowich Lake campground is one of the best places.  Spend a night stargazing and enjoy day hikes in the shadow of Washington’s most-iconic volcano. Mowich Lake is above the Carbon River, and the perfect campground to explore Spray Park and the lesser visited trails of Mount Rainier. Spray Park offers stunning views of Mount Rainier, as well as a dazzling display of wildflowers, once the snow melts. This is a seasonal campground, and should open around June each year. If you love hiking, lakes, wildflowers and endless alpine beauty, this is the ideal spot for you to stay a single night or seven.

5. Beaver Bay Campground

Explore the Ape Caves when you stay at Beaver Bay. Photo credit: Douglas Scott.

Beaver Bay Camping
Distance from Olympia: 114 Miles
Campsites: 63 Campsites
Reservations: http://www.pacificorp.com/about/or/washington/lrc.html

Close to Mount Saint Helens, the Beaver Bay campground is often overlooked. However, this privately-operated camping destination is located close to some of the most amazing hiking and family-friendly destinations in the shadow of the recently-erupted volcano. Just a few short miles from the lakeside campground, unique hiking opportunities await. Near Beaver Bay, one can explore the amazing lava tubes called the Ape Caves or stroll across an Indiana Jones-esque suspension bridge that crosses an ancient lava canyon. If you want to have a great experience exploring the wonders of Mount Saint Helens, camping at Beaver Bay will give you just that.

6. Olympic National Forest Service Cabins

The Hamma Hamma cabin is open for visitors year round. Photo courtesy: US Forest Service.

Olympic National Forest Service Cabins
Distance from Olympia: 65-100 Miles
Reservations: http://www.fs.usda.gov/

Located on the border of the immense wilderness of the Olympic Peninsula, Olympic National Forest offers three small cabins available to rent, each for less than $65 a night. The cabins were once all old forest service employee housing, now renovated to be the absolute ideal cabin experience in the majestic forests of the region. The three cabins, located near Sequim, along the Duckabush River and above the Hamma Hamma River vary in size. While some are smaller than others, each of these cabins gets you up close to some of the best hiking in the Pacific Northwest. A stay at the forest service cabins will forever change your view of our local natural wonderland and inspire you make a yearly visit to these historic dwellings.

7. Log Cabin Resort

Bring a crowd to Log Cabin Resort. Photo courtesy: Olympic National Park.

Log Cabin Resort
Distance from Olympia: 139 Miles
Reservations: http://www.olympicnationalparks.com/lodging/log-cabin-resort/

Open May through October 1, a stay at Log Cabin Resort in Olympic National Park puts you on the shores of Lake Crescent, the second deepest lake in Washington State. Log Cabin Resort offers four styles of lodging, allowing you to accommodate groups up to six people with ease. For larger groups, the Lakeside Chalets are perfect; but if you are looking for something a bit smaller and rustic, one should make a reservation in one of the Rustic Kitchenette Cabins. These cabins have two double beds and have amazing views of the Olympic Mountains and Lake Crescent. Close enough to be a quick drive to Hurricane Ridge, Log Cabin Resort is also extremely close to stunning hikes like the Spruce Railroad Trail, Marymere Falls and Mount Storm King.

8. Kalaloch Lodge

Camp along the coast at the always stunning Kalaloch Beach in Olympic National Park. Photo credit: Douglas Scott.

Kalaloch Lodge
Distance from Olympia: 129 Miles
Reservations: http://www.thekalalochlodge.com

Staying at Kalaloch Lodge is unlike anywhere else in Olympic National Park. During the mornings, be awakened by the crashing waves and seagulls from your cabin perched above the breaking seas. During the day, hike along the 10 miles of pristine beaches, watch for whales, dine at the restaurant or just sit back and wait for sunset to illuminate the sky in a brilliantly colorful evening display. At night, start a fire in your room’s fireplace, before taking a midnight stroll along the moonlit beaches. Even in bad weather, Kalaloch Lodge is incredible. With wind gusts during winter storms reaching well over 75 miles per hour, Kalaloch is consistently named the best storm-watching destination in Washington State. High on the bluff, in sun or rain, Kalaloch Lodge has been a destination for generations of visitors in Olympic National Park.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email