10 Fun Things to Do in Port Angeles and Sequim, Washington

Woman hiking outdoors
Jordan Siemens / Getty Images

Washington's Olympic Peninsula, known for its stunning natural beauty, is an important destination on the northwest tip of the state. Port Angeles and the nearby community of Sequim (pronounced squim) are the most populous areas on the peninsula.

Located on the shores of the Strait of Juan de Fuca and shadowed by the Olympic Mountains, these towns are gateways to all the amazing water, forest, river, lake, and mountain activities that draw people to the peninsula. Visitors also tend to spend at least some time at nearby Olympic National Park.

Most attractions and activities in the area focus on the region's rugged environment and natural beauty. Outdoor activities from biking and golfing to sea kayaking and beach combing are quite popular. Local attractions include lavender farms and shops, places to delve into local history, art galleries where you can find Indigenous art, and cooperatives featuring local artisans. 

01 of 10

Visit WWII Bunkers at the Salt Creek Recreation Area

A WWII Bunker at Salt Creek Recreation Area

Salt Creek Recreation Area

Tongue Point Marine Life Sanctuary, 3506 Camp Hayden Rd, Port Angeles, WA 98363, USA
Phone +1 360-928-3441

What began as a WWII military installation known as Camp Hayden has since become the beautiful 196-acre Salt Creek Recreation Area, situated just a 20-minute drive from Port Angeles along the Strait of Juan de Fuca.

To see the old bunker fortifications, walk along the short 0.2-mile trail leading out from the campground area. The park is also a wonderful place for a picnic, hike, or weekend camping adventure by the water.

02 of 10

Get Some Culture at the Port Angeles Fine Arts Center

Outside the Port Angeles Fine Arts Center

Port Angeles Fine Arts Center

1203 E Lauridsen Blvd, Port Angeles, WA 98362-6651, USA
Phone +1 360-457-3532

Comprised of the Esther Webster Gallery and Webster's Woods Sculpture Park, the Port Angeles Fine Arts Center offers a look at local art as well as a variety of low-impact pieces created with Indigenous materials. Both are free to enter and open to the public year-round.

For a real treat, plan your visit to coincide with the Wintertide Makers Market, typically held late-November through late-December, where you'll have the chance to purchase locally made jewelry, ornaments, knitted mittens and hats, toys, games, and other arts and crafts created by area artists.

03 of 10

Take a Hike at the Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge

Dungeness Recreation Area (Angela M. Brown)
Dungeness Recreation Area
Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge, Sequim, WA 98382, USA

Long, flat, and narrow, with sand-and-pebble beaches and an abundance of shorebirds, the Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge provides a truly unique experience. You can hike the length of the spit, exploring and enjoying the Strait of Juan de Fuca and San Juan Islands views from all directions. You can also have fun picnicking, hiking, and exploring ​the Dungeness Recreation Area, located at the base of Dungeness Spit.

Hardy individuals can trek the 11-mile round-trip journey to the New Dungeness Lighthouse, one of the oldest in the Northwest. Keep your eyes peeled in the parking area if you want to see eagles perched high in the exposed branches of the trees.

04 of 10

Visit Olympic National Park

Olympic National Park Visitor Center © Angela M. Brown (2007)
Olympic National Park Visitor Center
3002 Mt Angeles Rd, Port Angeles, WA 98362, USA
Phone +1 360-565-3130

The Olympic National Park Visitor Center is the first stop for visitors to the park, located about five miles southeast of Port Angeles. You'll find it near the park entrance on the road up to scenic Hurricane Ridge.

Exhibits and a great film provide an orientation to all the things you can see and experience inside Olympic National Park. Rangers are available to advise you on activities, road and trail conditions, as well as backcountry requirements. Two nature trails can be accessed from the visitor center.

Most visitors drive the 12 winding miles to Hurricane Ridge. Once you reach the top, you'll find amazing views of snowcapped mountains and, in good weather, vibrant sunsets. Fairly tame deer wander by and graze in the meadow right off the parking lot. It's also home to a visitor center and some short trails where you can stretch your legs. 

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05 of 10

Get Some Exercise in the Great Outdoors

Young woman hiking along dirt track
Lauren Devon / Getty Images
2358 US-101, Port Angeles, WA 98363, USA
Phone +1 360-417-3015

With access to miles of coastline, rivers, and forests, the Port Angeles area is packed with opportunities for outdoor play. Local bays and the Dungeness Spit provide great waters for sea kayaking. You can head out on your own or take a tour with a local outfitter, like Adventures Through Kayaking.

You can also hike or bike Port Angeles' 6.5-mile Waterfront Trail, part of the longer Olympic Discovery Trail system that will eventually run from Port Townsend to Forks.

If you want to get another view of Port Angeles in the shadows of the Olympic Mountains, try walking or biking the Ediz Hook spit. Access the route just after driving past the paper mill. On a good day, you will also see Mt. Baker. 

06 of 10

Attend a Festival

Rows of different shades of lavender in field with sunflowers at Lavender Festival, Sequim, Washington State, USA
Danita Delimont / Getty Images
Port Angeles, WA, USA

The communities of Port Angeles and Sequim host many fun annual festivals, like the Washington State International Kite Festival, giving you more reasons to plan that Olympic Peninsula getaway. In May, for instance, take in the Juan de Fuca Festival of the Arts, in Port Angeles.

Celebrate the 4th of July in Port Angeles or tour Sequim's lavender fields during the Sequim Lavender Festival. The town is known as "The Lavender Capital of the World" and invites you to its many lavender farms and shops all year long. The fields bloom in the summer and if you want to avoid the crowds, you can visit before or after the big festival week.

07 of 10

Celebrate Local Art

Northwest Native Expressions Gallery (Angela M. Brown)
Northwest Native Expressions Gallery
1033 Old Blyn Hwy, Sequim, WA 98382, USA
Phone +1 360-681-4640

With inspiration found in every direction, the Olympic Peninsula is home to a thriving arts community. Artists' work is showcased in a number of local galleries, including Northwest Native Expressions Gallery, located off Highway 101 and home to beautiful crafts, art prints, carvings, and gift items created by the people of the Jamestown S'Klallam tribe. While you're there, stop by the carving shed to see if there is Totem pole being carved. 

Peruse the Blue Whole Gallery in Sequim, where you'll find fine woodwork, art prints, bronze sculpture, and ceramics. To see even more art, visit during the Second Weekend Art Walk tour of galleries during the summer season in Port Angeles or the First Friday Art Walk in Sequim.

08 of 10

Meet the Local Marine Life

Feiro Marine Life Center (Angela M. Brown)
Feiro Marine Life Center
315 N Lincoln St, Port Angeles, WA 98362, USA
Phone +1 360-417-6254

The Feiro Marine Life Center provides a fun opportunity to learn about marine science and local marine life through exhibits and special programs.

Stop by to view see live specimens of a number of the critters who call the Strait of Juan de Fuca home, from a giant Pacific octopus to colorful sea stars. Educational programs are available for kids from grade school to high school age.

The Feiro Marine Life Center is located on the Port Angeles City Pier. After visiting, be sure and walk out on the pier and watch the locals crabbing. 

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09 of 10

Learn About Local History

Dungeness Schoolhouse in Washington

JeffGoulden / Getty Images

544 N Sequim Ave, Sequim, WA 98382, USA
Phone +1 360-681-2257

Don't miss the charming Dungeness Schoolhouse, painted white with red trim and a cupola; it's also home to Sequim's local history museum. The highlight of the museum's collection is the Manis Mastodon, a significant local archaeological find. In addition to tusks and bones, visitors can see murals and photo and video documentation of the 1977 discovery. The museum also houses an art gallery representing local artists. 

10 of 10

See Wild Animals at the Olympic Game Farm

Male peacock displaying plumage at Olympic Game Farm.
Mark Newman / Getty Images
1423 Ward Rd, Sequim, WA 98382, USA
Phone +1 360-683-4295

The privately-owned wildlife facility, Olympic Game Farm, in Sequim can be experienced on a driving tour, which you take in your own enclosed vehicle, provides you a chance to see elk, bison, yak, rhinoceros, and even lions, tigers, and bears (oh, my!)

The Olympic Game Farm began in the 1950s as a compound for animal actors that appeared in Disney movies. It is now a home for a range of animals including retired animal actors, those that have been rescued, and others from overpopulated zoo habitats.

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10 Fun Things to Do in Port Angeles and Sequim, Washington