Attractions include Mount Rainier, Space Needle, whales
Amazing scenery is commonplace in Washington, and The Evergreen State presents plenty of opportunities for recreation, adventure, entertainment and exploration:
1. Take a Peak
Join more than 1.5 million people who annually visit Mount Rainier National Park, whose main attraction is Mount Rainier – the highest peak in the Cascade Range. The southwest Washington landmark also has waterfalls, forestland, valleys and glaciers, and Mount Rainier hosts about 10,000 mountaineering attempts per year.
2. Go 605 Feet Up
Ride the 41-second elevator to the top of Seattle’s Space Needle, a 605-foot-tall building constructed for the 1962 World’s Fair. Highlights include a rotating SkyCity restaurant at 500 feet, while an observation deck at 520 feet provides views of the downtown Seattle skyline as well as Mount Rainier and the Cascade Mountains.
3. Hear the Plane Truth
Enjoy interactive exhibits and take a 90-minute tour of the Boeing airplane manufacturing plant in Everett. The company offers the only public tour in North America of a commercial jet assembly plant, and patrons can watch 747s, 777s and 787s being built. Also on site is an award-winning restaurant.
4. Watch Fish Get Thrown
Shop for some of the freshest fish in the Pacific Northwest at Pike Place Market, a tourism hotspot in Seattle where the employees are known for throwing fish to each other to put on display. The market sells Alaskan halibut, smoked salmon, swordfish and tuna as well as clams, crab, lobster, mussels, oysters, scallops and shrimp.
5. Say Ahhh
Rejuvenate at Alderbrook Resort & Spa, a getaway in Union on the shores of Hood Canal and surrounded by the Olympic Mountains. Luxurious rooms are available to guests along with a full service spa and waterfront saltwater pool, and the resort’s restaurant serves fresh seafood along with wine, beer and spirits.
6. Watch Whopping Whales
Travel to Friday Harbor and board a Western Prince Whale & Wildlife Tours boat that takes passengers around the area’s San Juan Islands. Huge humpback whales are often observed especially from December to April, and the company is known for showing respect for wildlife by observing federal and Pacific Whale Watch Association guidelines.
7. Drive Spectacular
Get into your vehicle and see why National Geographic Traveler describes the Cascade Loop Scenic Highway as “one of America’s grandest, most spectacular drives.â€ The 440-mile-long trip passes through attractive cities like Chelan, Coupeville, Everett, Mukilteo, Pateros, Sunnyslope and Twisp, and viewing highlights include the snow-capped North Cascades and the mighty Columbia River.
8. Shop, Dine, Relax
Experience a shopping trip to River Park Square, an interesting haven in Spokane that features stores like Anthropologie, Athleta, Nordstrom, The North Face and several specialty shops and restaurants. Also popular within that downtown location are Riverfront Park, AMC 20 Theatres, Mobius Children’s Museum and much more.