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3 days and 2 nights in Seattle - want to visit state parks!

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Cleveland, Ohio
posts: 8
reviews: 4
3 days and 2 nights in Seattle - want to visit state parks!

Hello. We will be flying into Seattle in late July, on a Weds. I have a seminar that begins there on Sunday, 8/11. We will have 3 days and 2 nights (Thurs., Fri., Sat.) before I have to be back to Seattle. So we want to see the countryside by way of daytrips, a National or State Park, or other outdoor destination. We will have a rental car. We need suggestions on where to go and where to possibly stay. We looked at Olympic National Park, but have read you can only really explore it on foot. Wasn't sure about other parks or Olympic Peninsula destinations. We will be traveling with our 4 year old, so major hiking is not on the agenda. Just really want to see the beauty of Washington! The mountains and the ocean. We don't mind driving and planned to head out of Seattle, and stay in one or 2 places, before heading back to Seattle to begin the seminar. Your thoughts and suggestions would be a great help!

Port Angeles, WA
Destination Expert
for Olympic National Park
posts: 6,083
reviews: 5
1. Re: 3 days and 2 nights in Seattle - want to visit state parks!

Deception Pass, Whidbey Island. WI is a good choice for visitors who lack the time or ability to hike ONP.

western WA
Destination Expert
for Seattle, Outdoors / Adventure Travel, Family Travel
posts: 8,615
reviews: 14
2. Re: 3 days and 2 nights in Seattle - want to visit state parks!

I agree that a loop of Whidbey Island, Port Townsend and maybe even Hurricane Ridge out of Port Angeles could work for you. You'd see all kinds of terrain, and there's plenty to do that will entertain a 4yo.

Be sure to go to Fort Casey. Bring a kite from home if you are checking a bag.

Seattle, Wa
posts: 2,205
reviews: 20
3. Re: 3 days and 2 nights in Seattle - want to visit state parks!

Mt Rainier is a good choice. You can do this as a day trip from Seattle, or stay nearer to/in the park (look at the park's websites to learn about lodging choices) and do it as an overnight. There are plenty of little nature trails your 4 year old can walk on. Try to do this on the weekdays.

Port Angeles, WA
Destination Expert
for Olympic National Park
posts: 6,083
reviews: 5
4. Re: 3 days and 2 nights in Seattle - want to visit state parks!

I don't think the loop including Hurricane Ridge is a good idea with a 4 year old. That would involve over well 7 hours in a car in a single day, and 4 year olds don't enjoy hours and hours of confinement. It is a full 2 hours from Port Townsend to the summit of the ridge, and that does not include any waits at the entry station. Such waits are common in August.

Stick to Whidbey Island. Port Townsend would be a nice day trip, too. It would be different if you wanted to do an overnight trip.

Poulsbo, Washington
Destination Expert
for Olympic National Park
posts: 4,837
reviews: 4
5. Re: 3 days and 2 nights in Seattle - want to visit state parks!

It really depends what kind of experience you want. If you are looking for scenic drives, quaint towns and choices of restaurants, then I agree with ainwa and Kaleberg. If you have any experience with visiting a National Park and want to see one of the most beautiful spots in the entire NW, then I agree with Christy. Finding lodging this late will be a challenge.

Cleveland, Ohio
posts: 8
reviews: 4
6. Re: 3 days and 2 nights in Seattle - want to visit state parks!

That sounds great! A loop like that would be just what we need. Any ideas on hotels/lodging? I figure I should book something ahead of time.

Green Valley...
Destination Expert
for Yellowstone National Park, Seattle
posts: 16,765
reviews: 45
7. Re: 3 days and 2 nights in Seattle - want to visit state parks!

Here's the loop of Whidbey Island mentioned above, and a lot more information. You'll see the "official" island website in that article; go to "Lodging". Also, select on the WI TA Forum "Hotels", top of that page.

Whidbey Island is a great day or more getaway with many features of the Pacific NW; this TA article includes key websites, tours, maps. tripadvisor.com/Travel-g58824-s2/Whidbey-Isl…

On Whidbey Island, Ebey’s Landing State Park Dramatic, easy, trail, farmland to the east, Puget Sound and the Olympics to the west. http://tinyurl.com/3c8zrnc

Edited: 11:52 pm, July 15, 2013
Cleveland, Ohio
posts: 8
reviews: 4
8. Re: 3 days and 2 nights in Seattle - want to visit state parks!

We have 3 days and 2 nights, so maybe the loop would work with our daughter if we break it up. Definitely looking into lodging tomorrow.

Cleveland, Ohio
posts: 8
reviews: 4
9. Re: 3 days and 2 nights in Seattle - want to visit state parks!

Ok. Planning now to stay in Coupeville for 2 nights now (Weds. and Thursday nights). Then wondering if I should make another reservation in Anacortes, and plan to stay over night there our 3rd night (Friday). Is there any real reason to change hotels, or can we access Anacortes relatively easily and quickly as to not need to change cities to stay Friday night? Thanks for all your help. It is assisting me tremendously in planning our trip.

Cleveland, Ohio
posts: 8
reviews: 4
10. Re: 3 days and 2 nights in Seattle - want to visit state parks!

Or should we stay Friday night in Port Angeles instead? Would love to see the Hoh Rainforest, but not sure how that will play out with a 4 yerar old.... We just need to be back in Seattle Saturday night. I'm probably trying to plan too much. Maybe staying in Coupeville for 3 nights is good enough.