Post Summary: The Best Weekend Getaways From Seattle, Washington And Exactly What To Do There
If you live in the Pacific Northwest, congratulations! You already reside in the greatest place on earth. (OKAY we know we’re biased, but still!)
From temperate rainforests, rolling hills, wineries, and seriously epic Washington waterfalls, there are so many incredible things to do in the PNW, especially if you live near Seattle, Washington. Even better, many of these amazing things to do in the Pacific Northwest can actually be experienced in just one short weekend trip!
Berty and I have been discovering new and exciting Seattle weekend trips since we started our blog in 2016, and still find new places to this day!
If you’re looking to take advantage of the weekend and head out on an adventure, this is the blog post for you. We’ve compiled the complete list of the best weekend getaways from Seattle, with options from the most adventurous trip to the Olympic Peninsula to a relaxing spa weekend in Snoqualmie.
Scroll through the list to find some of the best weekend trips from Seattle for you, and start filling your calendar with amazing Pacific Northwest experiences all year long!
Let’s get exploring!
- How To Get Around For Weekend Getaways From Seattle
- Olympic Peninsula (Olympic National Park)
- Mount Rainier National Park
- Leavenworth, Washington (And Lake Wenatchee)
- Spokane, Washington
- Vancouver, British Columbia
- Eugene, Oregon
- The San Juan Islands
- Bellingham, Washington / North Cascades
- Cannon Beach / Seaside, Oregon
- Columbia River Gorge (Washington and Oregon)
- Whidbey Island (The Captian Whidbey)
- MORE WASHINGTON ADVENTURES
How To Get Around For Weekend Getaways From Seattle
The best way to explore the Pacific Northwest for weekend getaways from Seattle is definitely by car. This will give you the most flexibility in getting from place to place, and allow you to even go offroading (if that’s something you want to do)!
Average Car: A regular car is perfect for the comfortable traveler, someone who will spend the night in PNW lodges and hotels. Make sure to bring a car that has a lot of trunk space (even better if you have a privacy cover!) to protect the gear in your car from prowlers at hiking trailheads.
Camper Van: Have you ever dreamed of driving around the Pacific Northwest in a cool rig, like a vintage VW Westfalia or decked-out Sprinter van? Well now you can, with Outdoorsy! This is like Airbnb but for cars, so you can choose the coolest bright Westy van to make your weekend trip from Seattle that much more instagrammable. Plus, all the vehicles on Outdoorsy are fully insured so you can drive worry-free!
Amazing Weekend Getaways From Seattle To Book Next Weekend!
Olympic Peninsula (Olympic National Park)
- Distance From Seattle: 82 miles, 2-hour 41 minute drive (with a ferry crossing)
- Type of Trip: Adventurous, Outdoorsy
Recommended Places To Stay on the Olympic Peninsula:
Campgrounds in the Olympic National Park
($$) Lodges in Olympic National Park – 4 historic lodges maintained by the national park
($) Olympic Lodge – Port Angeles (close to restuarants and amenities)
($$) Woodland Inns – Forks, Washington (small, separate cabins with fully stocked kitchen, sleeps 4)
The Olympic Peninsula is a weekend warrior’s dream – full of adventure, nature, and tons of ways to experience Washington in a new way.
The Hoh Rainforest is a unique temperate rainforest in the state, which allows you to fully immerse yourself in nature among the mossy trees. Sol Duc Falls provides an easy hike to an amazing waterfall, with Sol Duc Hot Springs just nearby too – bonus!
To start your weekend trip from Seattle, choose to take any of the Washington ferries across to Kitsap County (ferries to Kingston, Bainbridge, and Bremerton are all great route options to take depending on where in Seattle you’re coming from) and to begin your weekend trip across the Puget Sound.
The Olympic Peninsula provides some of the best weekend getaways from Seattle in the winter because of its mild climate. This part of Washington doesn’t receive much snow, so you don’t have to worry about packing your winter car emergency kit! Just expect high chances of rain, but shouldn’t you really know that already living in Seattle? It’s a given!
Mount Rainier National Park
- Distance From Seattle: 62 miles, 2-hour drive
- Type of Trip For: National Park Lovers, Hikers
- Recommended Accommodations: Camping in Mount Rainier National Park.
Ready for an amazing summer trip to the mountains? Consider taking a weekend trip from Seattle to Mount Rainier National Park!
If you want to stay close to the park, consider camping at one of the four Mount Rainier campsites; Cougar Rock Campground, Ohanapecosh Campground, White River Campground, and Mowich Lake Campground (which is a primitive, tent site only location).
Want more camping options? Download the app The Dyrt, which is the largest campground finding tool on the market! Their pro features are incredible – offline browsing, BLM and national forest maps make finding the perfect spot so easy. Try their pro membership free for 30-days when using our code MANDAGIES! Camping around Mount Rainier National Park will allow you to spend as much time in the park as possible!
Pack your hiking boots because some of the most beautiful spots here are just a quick hike away! The Paradise Area in Mount Rainier has some of the most popular hiking trails in Washington. Consider the Skyline Divide trail for seeing wildflowers, Nisqually Vista Loop for stunning views of Mt Rainier, and Reflection Lake for picture-perfect landscape photos.
For the Sunrise Area, get there early to witness its namesake (aka sunrise here is spectacular), and take the popular Fremont Lookout Trail for amazing mountain views. Don’t forget to stop by the Sunrise Visitors Center and get your National Park swag!
Highlights of Mount Rainier National Park:
- Fire Lookout Hikes (Mt Fremont Fire Lookout, Gobbler’s Knob Lookout, Tolmie Peak Lookout, and High Rock Fire Lookout)
- Paradise Area Hiking Trails
- Sunrise Area Hiking Trails
- Crystal Mountain Resort in the Summertime
Leavenworth, Washington (And Lake Wenatchee)
- Distance From Seattle: 134 miles, 2-hour 15-minute drive
- Type of Trip For: Foodies, Outdoor Lovers, Fun Annual Festivals
- Recommended Accommodations: Boutique hotels downtown. We recommend the Bavarian Lodge, or the PostHotel for some superior luxury!
Leavenworth is a bavarian-inspired mountain town just off of Highway 2 in the Cascade Mountains. Come to see the magical Christmas lights during the holiday season, enjoy a beer and brat for Oktoberfest, or come in the summertime and float down the river with your friends!
Nearby, you can also enjoy the lake in the Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, which hosts several hiking trails and camping opportunities, most famously the Colchuck Lake hike and overnight backpacking trips to The Enchantments.
Hiking Trails Near Leavenworth, Washington:
- Colchuck Lake
- Alpine Lakes Wilderness (Overnight permit required)
- Dirty Face Trail (Lake Wenatchee)
- Emerald Island (Lake Wenatchee State Park)
- Distance From Seattle: 280 miles, 4.5-hour drive
- Type of Trip For: Foodies, basketball lovers, outdoor enthusiasts
Recommended Spokane Accommodations
($$) The Davenport Hotel – Historic downtown hotel with tons of ways to feel fancy
($$) Montvale Hotel – another historic hotel, without the extra gaudiness
($) Holiday Inn Express -Downtown – affordable downtown stay on top of a literal rock!
Spokane is the second largest town in Washington and the most populated city in Eastern Washington! This is an incredible place to explore if you want a great combination of outdoor adventure with amazing food.
Love Basketball? Come get tickets to the popular Gonzaga basketball games and see the players in action on the court! Spokane is also the host of Hoopfest, an annual 3-on-3 basketball tournament that is a HUGE city-wide event that you can’t miss!
From nearby trails in Riverside State Park and tons of hiking opportunities in Mount Spokane, there are plenty of ways to get outside year-round in Spokane. To maximize your time among the fresh air, consider reserving Quartz Mountain Fire Lookout in the summer for an overnight stay under the stars!
Spokane’s food scene is booming, and it’s all thanks to innovating and creative entrepreneurs making Spokane their home. Try taking a morning walk to Hello, Sugar along the Centennial Trail to get some mini-donuts and fresh Indaba Coffee.
Don’t forget to stick around at Backyard Pub on Tuesdays and Thursdays for weekly trivia and bingo nights with their local brews and some of the best burgers in Spokane.
Not ready to leave? You can even take a longer day trip to Palouse Falls State Park and see Washington State’s very own waterfall!
Read More: The Ultimate List of Things To Do In Spokane (coming soon)
Vancouver, British Columbia
- Distance From Seattle: 145 miles, 2-hour 50-minute drive
- Type of Trip For: City lovers, outdoor day trips, those interested in culture and history
Recommended Places to Stay in Vancouver, BC
($$$) Fairmont Hotel – Downtown Vancouver (Luxury stay downtown within walking distance of restuarants and bars)
($$) Lonsdale Quay Hotel – North Vancouver (Great deals, right on the water)
Want to go international? Vancouver, British Columbia easy for a weekend trip from Seattle – just take a quick 2.5-hour drive north on Interstate 5 (with a border crossing!) and you’re in beautiful Canada!
Once in Vancouver, your long weekend trip from Seattle is completely customizable. You can spend your weekend exploring the city of Vancouver by checking out the Granville Island Public Market, shopping locally at Gastown, and even seeing the city from above at the Vancouver Lookout Tower.
Want a little more adventure? Consider checking out the nearby Stanley Park where you can ride your bike through its 6-mile park loop to see all parts of this natural wonder! Drive just a little farther north to discover Capilano Suspension Bridge Park and Lynn Canyon Bridge for incredible forest views from high above in the trees!
Go even a little farther and discover places like Buntzen Lake, Grouse Mountain, The Sea to Sky Gondola, or take a hike in Cypress Provincial Park. There are several weekend getaway locations from Vancouver to places like Squamish, Campbell River, and Kamloops – and these destinations work perfectly for a Seattle weekend getaway too!
No matter where your weekend trip from Seattle takes you in Vancouver, you’re sure to come back for more very soon!
Read More: How To Spend 24 Hours In Vancouver, BC
- Distance From Seattle: 280 miles, 5-hour drive
- Type of Trip For: Beer drinkers, waterfall hunters, Ducks fans
If you’re looking for things to do in the Pacific Northwest all near one city, Eugene is the perfect home base for long weekend getaways from Seattle. We definitely suggest coming on a long weekend – you deserve to get the most out of this 5-hour long journey!
Situated conveniently on Interstate-5, you are able to drive in one direction from Eugene to reach the Oregon Coast in less than two hours and the Cascade Mountains in the opposite direction.
Head to the coast to explore places like Heceta Head Lighthouse, Cape Perpetua and the Oregon Sand Dunes. Alternatively, head to the mountains and explore the mountain biking town of Oakridge, Salt Creek / Diamond Creek Falls, or take a drive along the Mackenzie River Corridor.
Want to just stay in town? Try checking out the nearby Spencer Butte Trail, roam around town seeing the 20×21 Eugene Mural Project, and taste the best breakfast at Off-The-Waffle. Additionally, head to the Whitaker Neighborhood for some beer tasting at Ninkasi Brewing and epic tacos at Tacovore.
Choose your own Eugene day trip adventure (or do it all!) in one amazing weekend getaway destination from Seattle.
The San Juan Islands
- Distance From Seattle: 100 miles, 3-hour drive (with a ferry ride from Anacortes, WA)
- Type of Trip For: Slow vacations, sea lovers, whale watching
The San Juan Islands are located just northwest of Seattle in the Puget Sound, making this an incredibly easy option for a weekend getaway from Seattle!
The most popular island to visit is San Juan Island, with Friday Harbor and Roche Harbor as attractive hubs for fresh seafood, quaint accommodations, and plenty of opportunities for sailing and whale watching. In the summertime, you can also try riding your bike around the island, or visiting their gorgeous lavender farms!
Other islands include Orcas Island and Lopez Island, both with their own unique spin on outdoor activities, community, and culture. Here, you can camp, ride your bike, and sit by the water at a much slower pace – perfect for a Seattle weekend getaway!
Seattle Weekend Itinerary Trip Tip: Reserve your spot on the ferry (round-trip) in advance. This way, you guarantee yourself a spot on your desired boat and time, which will save you from waiting in the on-call line.
Read More: Whale Watching In The San Juan Islands
Bellingham, Washington / North Cascades
- Distance From Seattle: 90 miles, 1.5-hour drive
- Type of Trip For: National Park lovers, boutique shoppers
- Recommended Accommodations: Fairhaven Village Inn (Close to Bellingham shops), camping in the park
Living in Washington State, we’re lucky to have not one but THREE national parks within a day’s drive of Seattle! If you’re looking for quick weekend getaways from Seattle that’s packed with beautiful ways to experience the outdoors, we highly recommend visiting Bellingham and the North Cascades National Park.
Bellingham is the perfect place to end your days, with fun restaurants and breweries to enjoy and lots of options for accommodations. From here, you can take a day trip to the North Cascades and see amazing stops like Diablo Lake Overlook, Liberty Bell, and Gorge Creek Falls. You can also for a day adventure by hiking the Heather-Maple Loop Trail.
Additionally, you can take Highway 542 to Mt Baker and experience more amazing hikes in Washington state, specifically at Artist Point, hiking to nearby fire lookouts, and a scenic stroll around Picture Lake.
Note: Weekend getaways from Seattle to the North Cascades are best saved for the summer months. This ensures the roads are open and clear of the heavy snow they receive in the winter season!
Cannon Beach / Seaside, Oregon
- Distance from Seattle: 200 miles, 3.5-hour drive
- Type of Trip For: Beach lovers, quaint Oregon coastal towns, Oregon coast attractions
- Recommended Accommodations: Hallmark Resort & Spa (closest to Haystack Rock), Lighthouse Inn (budget-friendly)
If you’re looking for some time to walk along the beach, Cannon Beach and Seaside are the perfect options for weekend getaways from Seattle. Because Washington beaches tend to be a lot rockier than they are sandy, Cannon Beach and Seaside are one of the closest options to feel the sand between your toes from Seattle.
Stay at the many gorgeous accommodations that dot the coastline, our favorites being the Headlands Lodge and the Inn at Haystack Rock (Among the others recommended above!)
Besides long walks on the beach, consider exploring the beautiful Ecola State Park just to the north of Cannon Beach, Hug Point State Recreation Site, or even try your hand at cold water surfing at Oswald West State Park!
Some of our favorite Cannon Beach cafes and restaurants:
- Sleepy Monk Coffee Roasters
- Insomnia Coffee Co
Columbia River Gorge (Washington and Oregon)
- Distance from Seattle: 228 miles, 3.5-hour drive
- Type of Trip For: Waterfall hunters!
- Recommended Accommodations: Hood River Hotel (Trendy downtown rooms!), The Society Hotel (also trendy in Downtown Portland!)
Looking to spend a maximum amount of time outside? You need to plan a weekend getaway from Seattle to the Columbia River Gorge!
The easiest place to stay is in Hood River, Oregon. This darling town is full of delicious cafes and restaurants, perfect for fueling up for a day full of adventure. It is also conveniently located at the center of many popular trailheads and famous Oregon waterfalls. Better yet, there are so many cool things to do in Mount Hood and it’s only a short drive away.
Nearby, there are many popular places to visit in the Columbia River Gorge. The most iconic are Multnomah Falls, Latourell Falls, Bridal Veil Falls, Rowena Crest, and Munra Point Hike.
Interested in exploring the Washington side of the Columbia River Gorge? You’ll open up doors to many more adventures. Take the Hood River Bridge (or the Bridge of the Gods) to access even more trails just across the river. Just remember to bring cash because crossing these bridges is a toll of $2 each time.
Once in Washington, consider checking out amazing places like Panther Creek Falls, Falls Creek Falls, and Beacon Rock State Park. For a mystical experience, go discover Maryhill Stonehenge during sunrise to feel like you’re going back in time.
Whidbey Island (The Captian Whidbey)
One of the coolest Seattle weekend getaways is on Whidbey Island, just a short drive from Seattle! The Captain Whidbey carefully preserves over 100 years of Puget Sound history while providing luxurious and exceptional hospitality. It’s a resort on the water, with a combination of cabins, historic hotel rooms, accommodations that look over the lagoon, and lots of green space and trails to wander.
The Captain Whidbey Inn is a perfect romantic getaway in Washington, perfect for couples celebrating an anniversary or looking for a relaxing escape. Book it here!
Don’t have time full-length weekend getaways from Seattle? Try some of these best overnight trips from Seattle instead!
Sometimes all it takes is a day trip to refresh yourself! Here are some of the best overnight trips from Seattle for a mini-vacation.
North Bend, Washington. North Bend is the perfect place for an overnight trip from Seattle – it’s only a 30-minute drive away! This area is perfect for you if you love the outdoors, but want a relaxing spa getaway as well. We suggest staying at the Salish Lodge & Spa for the full treatment and visiting Snoqualmie Falls right outside the lodge for one of the most romantic weekend getaways from Seattle. For hiking trails near Seattle, consider Little Si of Rattlesnake Ledge on your way back to the city in the morning.
Skykomish, Washington. Drive up Highway 2 for the day to experience some of the best outdoor hiking in Washington state! Stay overnight from Seattle at the insta-famous Tye Haus, and take short but stunning hikes to places like Scenic hot springs, Wallace Falls, and Barclay Lake.
Bainbridge Island, Washington. Take the ferry from Downtown Seattle to explore this gorgeous Pacific Northwest town on foot! The town center of Bainbridge is full of amazing cafes, boutique restaurants, and a waterfront for some leisure strolling. Bainbridge is the perfect place for a romantic day trip from Seattle!
Gig Harbor, Washington. Just a quick 45-minute drive away, Gig Harbor will allow you to see the Puget Sound from an entirely new perspective! Their quaint downtown and waterfront is the perfect way to experience the Pacific Northwest at a slower pace. You have to try Anthony’s Seafood and their iconic misspelled sign! Don’t forget to take a Gondola ride around the marina or explore Fox Island.