Arts and nature near Olympic National Park.

By Travel & Leisure
May 01, 2014
Credit: Courtesy of National Parks Service

The entry point to the wilderness of Olympic National Park, this artsy enclave also has a lovely Victorian-era downtown. Dubbed the “City of Dreams,” the spread certainly is a bit dreamy: there are lots of chic boutiques, a cluster of seafood restaurants along the waterfront, and a yacht- and sailboat-dotted harbor. Take it all in, then explore the surrounding beaches and wilderness on foot.

Dungeness Spit

Drive to remote Dungeness Spit on the Olympic Peninsula, often buffeted by turbulent waters.

Dungeness Lighthouse

For even more solitude, hike about five miles to the end of the Dungeness Spit and tour the Dungeness Lighthouse.

Jefferson County Historical Society

Since 1951, this brick-faced Port Townsend museum in this historic district has welcomed visitors to what was once a City Hall court room. Exhibits housed in the former fire hall and municipal court room highlight from Jefferson County’s maritime history and early Native American explorers, respectively. In the original jail, visitors can learn about the criminals who once occupied the space. From June through September, authentically clad tour guides share the area’s architectural and historical highlights in an hour-long presentation. Admission is free on the first Saturday of every month for Jefferson County residents.

Fountain Cafe

Eat at this cozy joint for sandwiches and vegetarian dishes using fresh local produce.

T's Restaurant

This restaurant has closed.

Located at Port Hudson Marina, this casual off-the-main-drag Port Townsend restaurant serves Northwest cuisine alongside Puget Sound vistas. The dining room soothes with sea green and aqua hues, wood accents, and comfortable, high-backed booths. The menu changes seasonally, but specialties include pan fried Dabob Bay oysters, made-to-order smoked salmon chowder, and shredded duck confit. The menu also has several vegetarian options, including shiitake and cremini mushrooms with angel hair pasta. On Monday and Wednesday, the restaurant offers half-priced bottles of wine.

Ann Starrett Mansion

For total Victorian immersion book a four-poster bed at the turreted hotel.