Travel

Washington State Itinerary

Washington State is an incredible part Pacific Northwest, filled with turquoise alpine lakes, moody rainforests, dreamy coastlines, and harsh ridge lines. If you love hiking and all things nature, Washington may be your new favorite spot to visit.

We skipped over Seattle, and went straight for the mountains, because we aren’t big city people. If you crave the same kind of adventure, then this is the itinerary for you!

Happen to be ending your time in Washington at The Gorge Amphitheater for a show, too? Amazing

If not that’s okay, I would add one day to Port Angeles and one day to Forks, if you have the time. But I highly recommend making plans in the future to get to the Gorge for a show. Best venue I’ve ever been to.

Below I go into a day by day break down, of how we fit it all into just 9 days. I will share the Airbnb’s we stayed at. And give you a life changing tip for when it comes to renting a car.

In my other blog posts. I will go into everything you need to know about the trails, beaches, and adventures we had.

Olympic National Park travel guide here!

Mount Rainer National Park travel guide, coming soon!

Day by day breakdown:

Day one: Fly in early. Breakfast at Poodle dog. The Gallery dispensary (right next to Poodle Dog). Drive 2.5 hours to Port Angles, check into Airbnb. Hike Hurricane Ridge. Tongue point for sunset.

Day two: Hike Spruce railroad trail to Devils Punchbowl, swim and enjoy the area. Lunch at Granny’s cafe on the way back. Hike Heart O’ the forest in Heart O’ the Hills. Chill night.

Day three: Wake up 2 hours before sunrise, drive up Hurricaine Ridge to hike to sunrise point. Back to Airbnb to pack up. Head to Sol Duc falls. If you want to see Maymere falls or lake Crecent view, stop on the way to Sol Duc Falls. Continue to Forks, lunch at The Place. Check into Airbnb. Rialto Beach for sunset.

Day four: Slow morning, pack up, start heading towards Ashford, about 4.5 hour drive. Stop at Kalaloch beach 4, and The Tree of Life on the way. We also stopped and got groceries at a Safeway, an hour out from the Airbnb. Enjoy the hot tub and fire pit at the Airbnb. Bed early!

Day five: Wake up at 1am to drive 2 hours to the Sunset visitors center. Begin Mount Fremont fire lookout hike at 4am, reach the fire lookout before sunrise. Watch the magical skies dance with the rising sun. Hike down, and eat breakfast at the car. Drive 25 mine to Hike Glacier basin to Emmons Morraine trail. Head to Tipsoo lake. Relax the rest of the day.

Day six: Sleep in. breakfast at Airbnb. Reflection lake. Myrtle Falls. Cruise around the Paradise side of Mount Rainer. Rest.

Day Seven: Pack up and drive 3 hours to The Gorge Ampitheater. Stop at Walmart on the way for camp gear. Set up camp, see a show, enjoy the day.

Day eight: Enjoy the gorge and another show.

Day nine: Time to go home. Pack up and drive 2 hours to the Seattle airport.

Port Angeles Airbnb:

The most convenient stay for exploring Olympic National Park, being only 5 minutes from the Hurricane Ridge entrance!

Port Angeles is a chill little costal town in Washington, with everything you need close by.

The Airbnb had kitchen supplies for a quick meal, and coffee in the morning. This stay was located right next to the hosts home, they were kind and welcoming, but gave us space. There was a backyard to sit and enjoy, and parking right in front of the house. This Airbnb wasn’t luxurious, but it was cozy and has everything you need for a very comfortable stay.

A steal coming in at $233 for two nights. Check it out here!

Forks Airbnb:

You could call this glamping, at best. This Airbnb is a community of a few campsites, set up waiting for your arrival. There were a few different sites to choose from, some having more beds, or a better kitchen set up. There is even one cabin on the property.

Our favorite part was walking out to the riverbed at night and looking up at the stars.

We booked the basic tent. A cot to sleep on (we used our own sleeping bags and pillows), table and chairs, fire pit, community porto potties, and showers. The host even ran us ice for our cooler, and gave us enough wood for a small fire.

It was $62 for the night. Check it out here!

Ashford Airbnb:

This Airbnb lives only 10 minutes from Mount Rainer’s Paradise entrance. The best part was playing games on the porch and enjoying the hot tub after a long day of hiking. They had everything you need to cook/grill a nice meal, comfy beds, and the perfect couch to lounge around and watch Netflix.

There was only two of us, but this airbnb could accommodate another couple plus one. I will be honest and say it was pretty close to the neighbors, but you can tell the hosts have done their best to give privacy to all renters. It’s nothing special, but it was convenient. And when we were looking this was most affordable Airbnb available, being $655 for three nights. Check it out here!

The Gorge Amphitheater:

I had a lot of anxiety gearing up to camp for my first time, at a festival/ concert style event. Thinking the amount of people and noise would really get to me. I was pleasantly surprised with how chill the environment was, and how much I loved it!

We went to see Dave Matthews Band, which attracts a very kind, friendly crowd. I’m sure the vibe changes based on who’s playing, and the fans they attract.

The key to having a fun and relaxing time at the gorge campsite, is to book Premier camping. It’s a lot more spacious, and less rowdy than the standard campsite. The other trick is to come prepared, by bringing all the food, water, and camp gear you need.

There is a convience store on site, but its a bit of a trek and expensive. I would recommend stopping at the Walmart about an hour out (depending on which direction you are heading in from).

We got in on a Friday afternoon, and left Sunday morning. Most people stayed Sunday for the third show, something I reallllllly wanted to do. But not fighting traffic on the way out was a huge benefit of leaving one day early.

  • There are porto potties all over the campsites
  • Free showers in premier (trailer showers, decently clean. Bring shower shoes!)
  • Food trucks in the center of all the campsites (we didn’t eat here, heard the lines get long)
  • It’s just over a mile walk each way, to and from the show
  • They have a few different tiers of campsites you can choose from
  • Ear plugs are a must if you’re a light sleeper
  • Stay hydrated- it gets HOT during the day
  • Pack layers, it gets chilly at night
  • Bring good vibes!

Car rental:

That car rental hack I told you I would share, you ready for it? Book a car through Turo! If you haven’t used it before, it’s a car rental app that lets you rent cars from individuals. Our particular host met us at arrivals and departures, making it the fastest and easiest rental car situation EVER!

*Make sure you read how the host delivers the car, because they all weren’t the same.*

Our host also had “extras” on his listing. We were able to rent two camping chairs, a cooler, and tent from him. Making our trip to The Gorge that much easier to pack for.

It was also way more affordable than the other car rental sites I was looking at. Coming in at $735 for 8 days. This is the car we rented, if it’s not available check out the hosts Nicolae’s other listings.

To Washington State you go…

We loved every moment of this trip from the 42.5 miles we ended up hiking, to the chill nights spent in the hot tub, to the party zone we entered by ending at the gorge.

If you love hiking your tail off on vacation, seeing the dreamiest viewpoints, and throwing a lil live music in to wrap it all up.. Then this is the trip for you!

Time to get to booking your flights and Airbnbs, and bring this trip to life!

Don’t forget to to tag me on Instagram if this itinerary helps lead you somewhere magical! @brittanymassey