Puget Sound Insider’s Guide
Where to Stay
Great Value A short walk from the Bainbridge Island ferry, the Eagle Harbor Inn (291 Madison Ave. S.; 206/842-1446; theeagleharborinn.com; doubles from $149) surrounds a small garden, with cozy interiors that feature overstuffed armchairs and Oriental rugs.
Back To Nature
Great Value There are no TV’s or phones to distract from the idyllic views at the Lake Crescent Lodge (416 Lake Crescent Rd., Olympic National Park; 360/928-3211; lakecrescentlodge.com; doubles from $105). Rooms in the converted 1916 tavern and Roosevelt cottages feel the most authentic, thanks to rustic birch furniture and pine-lined walls.
Great Value Decked out in cabbage-rose–patterned wallpaper and wicker chairs, the seven preppy-chic bungalows at Chevy Chase Beach Cabins (3710 S. Discovery Rd., Port Townsend; 360/385-1270; chevychasebeachcabins.com; doubles from $110) conjure a posh, grown-up summer camp—complete with croquet courts and horseshoe pit.
Where to Eat & Drink
The mouthwatering signature sandwich at the Port Angeles CrabHouse (221 N. Lincoln, Port Angeles; 360/457-0424; lunch for two $35) combines Dungeness and Pacific meat on toasted sourdough. Bonus: an unironically retro interior with wraparound vistas of the Strait of Juan de Fuca.
The perfect antidote to that Pacific Northwest drizzle: a just-pulled Borgia (a mocha laced with orange zest) with your morning eggs at Sweet Laurette’s Café & Bistro (1029 Lawrence St., Port Townsend; 360/385-4886; breakfast for two $30).
Chef Matt Costello of the Inn at Langley (400 First St., Langley, Whidbey Island; 360/221-3033; dinner for two $170) scours nearby farmers’ markets for his six-course prix fixe menus (Whidbey Island lamb loin; citrus-cured wild salmon), served Friday to Sunday. With only one seating a night, the meal can seem like a festive dinner party.
Everyone from tattooed bikers to blue-haired old ladies slurps down the steamed Penn Cove mussels at funky Toby’s Tavern (8 N.W. Front St., Coupeville, Whidbey Island; 360/678-4222; lunch for two $25), which overlooks the waters where the famed bivalves are harvested.
What to See & Do
Lose yourself among the cultivated woodlands and manicured landscapes at the Bloedel Reserve (7571 N.E. Dolphin Dr., Bainbridge Island; 206/842-7631; reservations required), the sprawling former estate of a lumber baron turned passionate horticulturist.
Wild at Heart
Designated by Congress in 1938, mammoth and mountainous Olympic National Park (Visitors’ center at 3002 Mount Angeles Rd., Port Angeles; 360/565-3130; nps.gov) stretches across rugged Pacific coast and lush interior old-growth forests. Daylong explorations are surprisingly simple: in less than an hour, you can drive from Port Angeles to the Hurricane Hill Trail, a 3.2-mile ramble through subalpine meadows and groves, with heart-stopping views of peaks and nearby Vancouver Island.
Three retired army bases are now popular state parks. Kayak through coves at Fort Worden (Port Townsend; 360/344-4400; rentals from $20 per hour), dig for littleneck clams along the shore at Fort Flagler (Marrowstone Island; 360/385-1259), or fly kites on the parade field at Fort Casey (Whidbey Island; 360/678-4519).
In downtown Port Townsend, whimsical Summer House Design (930 Water St., Port Townsend; 360/344-4192) stocks pétanque sets and handblown sake glasses. Artisans on Taylor (236 Taylor St., Port Townsend; 360/379-1029) has lathe-turned madrone-wood bowls. At the Wandering Wardrobe (936 Washington St., Port Townsend; 360/379-4691), score vintage handbags and Jackie O.–style suits.
Seattle to Bainbridge Island: 12 miles
Bainbridge Island to Sequim: 55 miles
Sequim to Port Angeles: 19 miles