Seattle is Washington State's largest city, and as such, has plenty to offer to visitors. Fine dining, exciting attractions, rich history, and breathtaking scenery are all to be found in the Emerald City. But on this short but fun-packed RV trip, you can head into some far more rural environments. Although this is just a one-day road trip, it will expose you to some magnificent countryside with beautiful lakes and towering forests as you make your way slowly towards Astoria. See two great states in one great day as you venture into the Pacific Northwest with all its low-key charm.
Tacoma lies just half an hour south of Seattle. The Museum of Glass is no ordinary glass museum. It was opened in 2002 and there are 75 000 square feet dedicated to the making and display of this beautiful and delicate material.
In addition to the permanent exhibitions on the development of modern and contemporary glass, there are also pieces by the local glass artist Dale Chihuly. You can also enjoy watching artists blowing and contorting glass to create their own pieces right there in the building.
The building itself is iconic. The approach is dotted with impressive glass sculptures and you then traverse interstate 705 on the famous Chihuly Bridge of Glass. This incorporates crystal towers and a ceiling containing 2000 glass objects that give the feeling of being underwater.
The Museum Café is a great place to grab a coffee and a snack.
Percival’s Landing and Park is a one-mile-long wooden boardwalk that follows the edge of the local marina. It is an easy thirty five minute drive from the glass museum. The 3.33-acre park doubles as a bird sanctuary and outdoor art gallery. Each year the Olympia town council invites local and regional artists to display their work in the park and then locals are encouraged to vote for their favorite pieces. These are then bought by the council and kept as permanent displays.
There are over two hundred species of bird living in the area and a viewing tower provides the perfect place from which to observe many of them. At the marina, you will have plenty of restaurants and coffee shops to grab a bite or some refreshments. Budd Bay Cafe offers a 180-degree view across the bay as well as seafood specialties. These include creamy clam chowder and crab cakes.
The Bigelow House is a six-minute drive from Percival’s landing. It is one of the oldest residences in Olympia. Built-in the Gothic style, it has original furnishings as well as photos and documents. Volunteer guides will show you around and introduce you to some of the fascinating histories of both the house and the area.
Lewis and Clark State Park is forty-three miles from Olympia. This park of just 616 acres is a wonderful example old-growth forest. It contains huge red cedar, fir, and Douglas pines as you have probably never seen them before and they are now some of the last remaining examples of old-growth forest in the state.
There is a delightful eight-mile hiking trail that winds between the towering trees where you will find yourself surrounded by ferns and dense vegetation. If you are lucky, you might spot some of the giant salamanders that live in the local streams.
The final drive through to Astoria will take an hour and a half. This is a port city that was founded in 1811 and is the oldest city in Oregon. There you will be able to enjoy fresh seafood or visit the local film museum. It makes the perfect end to a short but unique road trip through this scenic part of the country.