There’s no denying that Seattle is a major destination in the PNW.
Seattle sits in the middle of a region rich with history and natural wonders. It’s the gateway to limitless memorable adventures outdoors.
Though the area is known for its rugged coastline and moss-laden rain forests, there is so much more to discover. If you find yourself in Seattle, you must spend some time away from it so you can see a bit of the rich landscape surrounding the entertaining city. Below you’ll find 15 best weekend getaways from Seattle that will leave you craving to come back and explore more.
This post may contain affiliate links, where we receive a small commission on sales of the products that are linked at no additional cost to you. All opinions are always our own. Read our full disclosure for more info. Thank you for supporting the brands that make Local Adventurer possible.
Last Updated: January 21, 2021
15 Best Weekend Trips from Seattle
Distance: 82.4 mi / 2 hr 35 min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Hoh Rain Forest, Hurricane Ridge, Sol Duc Falls, Hall of Mosses
What to Eat: Next Door Gastropub, BBG Blakeslees Bar & Grill, 8th Street Ale House
Where to Stay: Port Angeles Inn, The Resort at Port Ludlow, Ambiance B&B
A weekend getaway to Olympic National Park feels like visiting several national parks instead of just one. That’s because of the immense diversity found in the park. From its haunting rain forests dripping with moss to towering mountain tops at Hurricane Ridge, and the rugged coastline and beaches.
You need at least a full weekend to explore this park. We recommend spending one day alone enjoying the wind-swept dramatic coastline and one day hiking in the rainforest and chasing waterfalls.
Pro Tip: If you plan on visiting multiple National Parks this year, don’t forget to pick up an Annual National Park Pass.
2. Mount Rainier National Park, WA
Distance: 89.6 mi / 1hr 51 min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Paradise trails, Narada Falls, Sunrise trails, Grove of the Patriarchs
What to Eat: Copper Creek Inn & Lodge, Packwood Brewing Co., Cliff Droppers
Where to Stay: Alexander’s Lodge, Nisqually Lodge, Cowlitz River Lodge
Though you can already see Mount Rainier from Seattle hovering in the distance like a mirage, to really experience Rainier, you have to visit Mount Rainier National Park.
The park is full of incredible hiking trails, waterfalls, ancient trees, and colorful wildflowers. There’s more than plenty there to keep you active for a weekend getaway from Seattle. Trust us, you will continually be blown away by the landscape!
Distance: 107 mi / 2hr 2 min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Diablo Lake, Washington Pass Overlook, Ross Lake, Maple Pass Loop
What to Eat: Cascade Burgers, Arrowleaf Bistro, Freestone Inn Fine Dining
Where to Stay: River Run Inn, Methow River Lodge & Cabins, Sun Mountain Lodge
The least visited national park in Washington state is the perfect road trip getaway from Seattle. Although much of the park is only accessible through backcountry hiking, the scenic drive through North Cascades National Park has many epic overlooks that will leave you speechless.
There are tons of activities to do in the North Cascades as well, including kayaking, rock climbing, and hiking. If you hit the trails, Maple Pass Loop should be at the top of your list for its endless views.
4. San Juan Islands, WA
Distance: 107 mi / 3 hr 17 min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Orca whale watching, Mount Constitution, Moran State Park
What to Eat: Downriggers, Duck Soup, San Juan Island Brewing
Where to Stay: The Marina Inn, Argyle House B&B, Trumpeter Inn
With so many different ways to experience the San Juan Islands, it’s hard to decide what you want to do for a weekend getaway from Seattle. For a relaxing weekend, there are wineries, spas, and whale watching tours (May through October are the best times to spot Orcas).
If you want a more active time in the San Juan Islands, there’s kayaking, biking, and hiking to make a weekend quickly disappear. Though it may not be that far from Seattle, the San Juan Islands feels like an entire world away.
Distance: 143 mi / 2 hr 35 min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Stanley Park, Capilano Suspension Bridge, Granville Island
What to Eat: Blue Water Café, Fanny Bay Oyster Bar & Shellfish Market, The Flying Pig
Where to Stay: Hotel Belmont Vancouver, St. Regis Hotel, Fairmont Pacific Rim
Be warned, Vancouver is a city that everyone falls in love with. How can you not? Its vibrant streets are filled with chic shops, art galleries, and delectable restaurants while being surrounded by nature.
It’s the perfect blend to enjoy no matter what time of year you decide to visit. Just make sure to bring comfortable shoes as you’ll be doing a lot of walking. The city is that amazing that you’ll want to explore on foot. Also, don’t forget to pack to your passport when driving from Seattle!
Pro Tip: We love our Vessi shoes and they’re based in Vancouver. They are perfect for walking around Vancouver, since they’re super comfortable and waterproof.
Distance: 180 mi / 2hr 56 min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Washington Park, Pittock Mansion, Forest Park
What to Eat: 49 Best Places to Eat in Portland
Where to Stay: The Paramount Hotel, The Benson, Sentinel
Always unconventional and never boring, Portland is a city that you must visit to truly understand. Though it’s Oregon’s largest city, it feels wildly independent with a slew of small distilleries, eateries, and eclectic boutiques.
The city is also full of green spaces that are so large that you forget that you are in a city. While living there, we never ran out of new hikes. The thriving arts and cultural scene make the evenings in Portland a special place to be.
Distance: 195 mi / 3 hr 4 min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Multnomah Falls, Latourell Falls, Oneonta Gorge
What to Eat: Thunder Island Brewing, Brigham Fish Market, Walking Man Brewing
Where to Stay: Comfort Inn Columbia Gorge Gateway, Best Western Plus Columbia River Inn, Skamania Lodge
The 20-mile scenic highway that passes along the Columbia River Gorge is an experience in of itself. The lush green surroundings and overlooks, like the Vista House, may be enough for some people. The area is beloved by hikers for the breathtaking beauty contained in the massive gorge, including 77 waterfalls!
Plus, the most popular and iconic spot in the Pacific Northwest, Multnomah Falls, is found here.
Local Tip: Wahclella Falls is one of our favorite easy hikes. We found ourselves back here multiple times.
8. Willamette Valley, OR
Distance: 222 mi / 3hr 44 min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Winery tours, Willamette National Forest, Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway
What to Eat: Angel Share Barrel House, Mashita Teriyaki, Turnaround Cafe
Where to Stay: Foster Lake Inn, Comfort Suites, The Independence
Enjoy the scenic hills and covered bridges as you tour through Oregon’s premier wine region. The Willamette Valley is renowned for its pinot and you can savor countless varieties. It’s the perfect relaxing weekend getaway from Seattle.
If you want have fun outdoors, you can do that here too with miles of hiking trails and waterfalls at the Willamette National Forest. Bicycling enthusiasts can enjoy part or all of the 134-mile Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway, the first of its kind in the U.S. It’s definitely a unique way to explore the region at a leisurely pace.
Local Tip: Willamette rhymes with dammit. We didn’t know how to properly say it until we lived in Portland.
9. Mount Hood, OR
Distance: 263 mi / 4hr 48 min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Mount Hood Scenic Drive, Mount Hood Ski Resort, Trillium Lake
What to Eat: The Rendezvous Grill, al Forno Ferruzza, Skyway Bar & Grill
Where to Stay: Westcliff Lodge, Columbia Cliff Villas Hotel, Cooper Spur Mountain Resort
Looming in the distance of Portland stands Mount Hood. This dormant volcano, and tallest peak in Oregon, is a year-round playground for those who love the outdoors.
In the summer, a network of trails takes you to picture-perfect lakes, like Mirror Lake, or to waterfalls, like Ramona Falls. You can even take a journey on part of the Old Oregon Trail.
In the winter, the area transforms into a winter wonderland prime for amazing skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing.
10. Spokane, WA
Distance: 279 mi / 4hr 11 min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Riverfront Park, Northwest Museum of Arts & Culture, Riverside State Park
What to Eat: Elliotts an Urban Kitchen, Mizuna, Wild Sage Bistro
Where to Stay: Montvale Hotel, The Davenport Tower, The Historic Davenport
The Gateway to the American West, Spokane is a weekend getaway from Seattle destination in its own right. Constantly overlooked for the showier coastal area of Washington, Spokane promises visitors a fun-filled and cultural experience.
Exploring the vibrant city includes walks through epic parks, cultural museums, and history lined streets. Just outside the city nature abounds in several state parks providing you with options for hiking, water activities, or spectacular views.
11. Pacific Rim National Park Reserve, BC
Distance: 296 mi / 7hr 10 min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Long Beach, South Beach Trail, Rainforest Trail
What to Eat: Wolf in the Fog, Shelter Restaurant, Sea Monster Noodle Bar
Where to Stay: West Coast Motel, Embarc Ucluelet, Waters Edge Shoreside Suites
The pristine beauty and rugged coastline of the Pacific Rim National Park Reserve attracts visitors year round.
You can walk the numerous beaches or enjoy watching surfers tackle the restless waves. Epic hiking trails traverse the park along the wild shores and deep into the moody rainforests.
Pro Tip: Don’t forget to pack your passport!
Distance: 307 mi / 5hr 21 min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Misery Ridge, Rock Climbing, Painted Hills
What to Eat: Diego’s Spirited Kitchen, Vine-n-Tap, Grace and Hammer
Where to Stay: Sleep Inn & Suites, SCP Hotel Redmond, Brasada Ranch
This is easily one of our favorite spots in Oregon. Smith Rock State Park may not be the largest state park, but it is certainly one of the most iconic in Oregon. The breathtaking views of the massive rock formations with a river winding through are unforgettable.
The views are epic, but we especially love this park for the rock climbing. It’s truly an adventure weekend getaway from Seattle. You can extend your trip by hanging out in Bend or driving 1.5 hours more to take in the beauty of Painted Hills.
13. Bend, OR
Distance: 328 mi / 5hr 44 min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Tumalo Falls, Newberry National Volcanic Monument, Deschutes River
What to Eat: Spork, Zydeco Kitchen & Cocktails, Bangers & Brews
Where to Stay: Bunk & Brew Historic Lucas House, McMenamins Old St. Francis, The Oxford Hotel Bend
Nestled in the mountains in central Oregon, Bend welcomes visitors with a cold beer (over 20 breweries in town!) and a drier climate. Plus, the epic outdoor activities make it an ideal place to get away no matter the time of year.
In town, besides sampling all the brews, there are cute boutiques and spas.
The stunning Tumalo Falls never fails to impress while the Deschutes River is ideal for having a relaxing summer day. You’ll find hiking trails and lava tubes to be explored in summer, while ski runs dominate in winter.
While living in Portland, a lot of people complained about the city being overrun by hipsters. Then we noticed more people moving to Bend.
14. Joseph, OR
Distance: 360 mi / 6 hr 19 min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Wallowa Lake, Hells Canyon Scenic Byway, Bronze Artwalk
What to Eat: The Dog Spot, Old Town Café, Cheyenne Cafe
Where to Stay: Eagle Cap Chalets, The Ponderosa Motel, Eagle’s View Inn & Suites
If you can’t decide between relaxing or being active for the weekend, head to Joseph, Oregon. Once you’re there, you’ll know if you want to soak in the splendid, tranquil views of Wallowa Lake or the endless valley views along the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway.
There’s hiking, mountain biking, fishing, boating, and swimming in the summer. During winter, you can enjoy the region via cross-country skiing or snowmobiling.
In town, don’t forget to treat yourself to local and fresh product and marvel at the artistry of the bronze sculptors. It put Joseph Oregon on the map as bronze sculptures became more popular.
Distance: 405 mi / 6hr 42min (map)
Things You Can’t Miss: Rim Drive, Crater Lake Boat Tour, Hiking Trails
What to Eat: Prospect Café, The Potbelly Café, Beckie’s Cafe
Where to Stay: Edgewater Inn Shady Cove, Shelter Cove Resort, Sleep Inn & Suites
As you make your way around the Rim Drive, the crater views change giving you glimpses to hidden bends and islands.
For a completely different experience of Crater Lake, reserve your spot on a boat cruise and feel the immense size of the rim walls. Numerous hiking trails provide views that showcase the beauty of the lake and surrounding mountains.
More Weekend Getaways from Seattle
- Whidbey Island, WA (34.4 mi / 1 hr 12 min / map)
- Ellensburg, WA (107 mi / 1 hr 42 min / map)
- Port Townsend, WA (55.9 mi / 2 hr 6 min / map)
- Leavenworth, WA (135 mi / 2 hr 14 min / map)
- Wenatchee, WA (148 mi / 2 hr 33 min / map)
- Astoria, OR (181 mi / 3 hr 9 min / map) Long
- Beach, WA (171 mi / 3 hr 11 min / map)
- Mt St. Helen’s National Volcanic Monument, WA (185 mi / 3 hr 15 min / map)
- Winthrop, WA (189 mi / 3 hr 38 min / map)
- Salem, OR (219 mi / 3 hr 42 min / map)
- Cannon Beach, OR (206 mi / 3 hr 47 min / map)
- Lake Chelan, WA (198 mi / 3 hr 50 min / map)
- Silver Falls State Park, OR (226 mi / 3 hr 53 min / map)
- Whistler, British Colombia (217 mi / 4 hr / map)
- Eugene, OR (283 mi / 4 hr 36 min / map)
Map of the Best Weekend Getaways from Seattle
Best Places to Stay in Seattle
Can you think of any others that belong on our list of best day trips from Seattle? Which ones have you done so far?
Did you enjoy this post? Pin it for later
Esther + Jacob
Esther and Jacob are the founders of Local Adventurer, which is one of the top 5 travel blogs in the US. They believe that adventure can be found both near and far and hope to inspire others to explore locally. They explore a new city in depth every year and currently base themselves in Las Vegas.
You might also love
The post 15 Best Weekend Getaways from Seattle WA appeared first on Local Adventurer » Travel Adventures in Las Vegas + World Wide.