Post Summary: Photos to inspire you to travel to Ruby Beach in Washington state.
This past Saturday, Berty and I decided to take a one-day road trip and drive the Olympic Peninsula Loop.
To those who aren’t familiar with Washington State, the Olympic Loop is a scenic highway that circles the entire perimeter of the Olympic National Park and Olympic National Forest.
This is a unique drive because in the span of 300+ miles, you can see breath-taking ocean shores, pristine lakes, captivating mountain ranges, and even a temperate rainforest! Talk about getting your mile’s worth.
In this post, we’re sharing one of our favorite beaches in Washington – Ruby Beach. We hope this inspires you to take your own adventure to the Washington Coast!
The Complete Guide To Ruby Beach on The Olympic Peninsula
(& Why You Need To Visit ASAP)
Where is Ruby Beach?
Ruby Beach is located on the Washington Coast. It is also part of the Olympic National Park, which means people take great care to conserve the land and the wildlife that live here.
Ruby Beach got its unique name from the reddish granules that often gather together on the shore. Some could even mistake them for rubies on the beach!
How To Get To Ruby Beach From Seattle:
Ruby Beach just over a 3-hour drive from the city of Seattle. During the drive, you’ll find yourself going through cities like Tacoma and Olympia.
If you live north of Seattle, we recommend taking the Washington ferries across the Puget Sound and arriving at Ruby Beach from the north part of Highway 101.
Things To Do At Ruby Beach
Take A Beach Hike
Best Photography Opportunities At Ruby Beach
The Entrance To Ruby Beach
Right before you make your descent to the shore form the parking lot, take some time and enjoy the view from above.
The Sea Stacks at Ruby Beach
The Huge Driftwood Logs On Shore
Important Information About Ruby Beach
Ruby Beach Is Part Of The Olympic National Park
This means you will need a National Park Pass to park in the parking lot.
Drones Are Not Permitted
Ruby Beach is home to lots of wildlife, including band eagles. It’s against the law to fly drones on this beach, and it’s for the protection of these precious animals. Ruby Beach is also located within the Olympic National Park, and it’s against the law to fly drones in any US National Park.
Want to know the drone-safe beaches in Washington? Click here to read more about proper drone usage on the Washington Coast, and check with local communities if the laws are different in the area.
Things To Pack For Your Trip To Ruby Beach
Just like any other adventure to Washington beaches, it’s important to be prepared. Here are some tips and considerations to remember when packing for your Ruby Beach trip.
Wear Waterproof Boots or Shoes. Depending on the time of year, it’s important to keep your feet safe in this wet climate. In winter, we suggest packing a pair of tall rainboots to walk and explore the shore. In the summertime, we suggest wearing water-safe sandals like Tevas or Chacos
Pack Extra Trash Bags: Ruby Beach is one of the most popular Washingon beaches. Because of its high visitation, it’s important to all of us to do our part and keep it clean and safe! Pack a few trash bags and pick up garbage along the way as you see it.
Our Ruby Beach Story
We took this trip because it’s totally do-able in a day. Berty and I didn’t have a whole weekend to commit to an adventure, but we still wanted to get out an explore new places.
The Olympic Loop was a perfect choice because it checked off some long-standing PNW bucket list spots! Our friends were free (yay!) so we invited them along and spent the whole day catching up on life.
But first, coffee.
Our first stop, naturally. We began our trip going south, passing through Olympia. While in the state’s capital, it’s impossible to not stop at Olympia Coffee Roasters!
This place won countless awards thanks to their talented baristas and killer skills. With coffee and pastries in hand, it was a perfect morning to catch us with one another and begin our day’s adventure.
The Washington Coast
On our way to Ruby Beach, we drove north on Highway 101. This is such an exciting road to drive on because as you near the water, between colossal evergreen trees are pockets of jaw-dropping views of the Pacific Ocean.
We couldn’t wait to get out of the car and soak in our first view of the day!
After a 3.5-hour car ride, we finally arrived at Ruby Beach. Crashing waves rhythmically hit the shore, and driftwood swelled back and forth in its wake.
Looking back, we will return when the tide is out. We definitely came during high tide, which prevented us from going farther north and exploring the rock formations.
However, we spent the rest of the morning climbing over piled logs, taking pictures and enjoying each other’s company, so it was time well spent. The ocean is so captivating!
We watched the weather forecast all week and we were CERTAIN that it was going to be a rainy, cloudy day. Fortunately, we were pleasantly surprised with on and off again sun breaks and just a few showers
. We packed Berty’s Ona bag with our raincoats and a Woolrich blanket juuuuust in case. This bag is perfect for the unpredictable Pacific Northwest weather. Its leather exterior lets water run right off the top, keeping your essentials dry! And hellooooo, it’s uber stylish.
Berty and I were stoked that our friends Kate and Matt could join us.
They have been in our lives for quite some time now! Kate and Matt both are patient, loving individuals who care a lot about each other!
We first met them in college, and have been friends through job searches, life transitions, and so much more. Whenever we get together with these two it’s always a blast.
Traveling with friends, in my opinion, is one of the best things you can do to create lasting relationships.
It allows you to see one another in vulnerable spots, experience new places together and helps you connect on a deeper level.
Before you plan your next trip, try to think of who you would enjoy spending a day with. Do you want to know someone better? Invite them! Rekindle old friendships?
Give them a call!
After a couple hours at Ruby Beach, we needed to find a place to each lunch. All of us were craving greasy diner food and coffee, so we did a quick google search and found the perfect spot in Twilight…I mean, Forks, WA.
BUT, our trip is long from over. Stay tuned in a few days to see the rest of this photo set! In the meantime, read below for some more places that you can check out right off the Olympic Loop Highway…
OLYMPIC LOOP HIGHWAY ESSENTIALS:
This time, we weren’t able to fit this beach in – but it’s definitely a must-see! Rialto Beach is similar to Ruby Beach, except that it has 10x the driftwood and it’s practically all bleached white. On its shore, it also has a walking trail called Hole In The Wall.
An iconic stop for anyone wanting to soak in the best of the Northwest. At First Beach, there is easy access to the waterfront. Second beach requires a short hike, and Third beach is only for the people who really want to commit. (1.2 miles). Similar to Ruby and Rialto beach, rock formations stand out proudly in the water.
Inside the rainforest, there are two short hikes (which are beautiful) and a big 17.3 backpacking trail for summer adventures. This stop is definitely recommended for nature buffs.
Here, you can find the most northwest point of the continental U.S.! It’s a short hike and the views are totally worth it.
READ MORE PACIFIC NORTHWEST ADVENTURES