Trip Planner:   USA  /  Washington State  /  Ilwaco  /  Nature  /  Cape Disappointment State Park
Cape Disappointment State Park, Ilwaco
(4.3/5 based on 320+ reviews on the web)
Cape Disappointment State Park is a publicly owned recreation area located southwest of Ilwaco, Washington, on the bottom end of Long Beach Peninsula, the northern headlands where the Columbia River meets the Pacific Ocean. The state park's encompass a diverse landscape of old-growth forest, freshwater lakes, freshwater and saltwater marshes, and oceanside tidelands. Sights in the park include the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center, of ocean beach, the North Head Lighthouse, and the Cape Disappointment Lighthouse.Cape Disappointment is one of several state parks and sites in Washington and Oregon that make up the Lewis and Clark National and State Historical Parks.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • We headed out of Seattle to spend a night camping here but sadly were turned away as the lot was full. But we did come back the next day to have seagulls, sit by the ocean and just enjoy the scenery. ...  more »
  • Good campground. Very large, with well-maintained sites. Rangers on site at all times. West-facing sunsets. Good walk-thrus to the beaches. 
  • We were there to see where my great-great-grandfather was the lighthousekeeper, which was very interesting. There was great help and interest from Aaron Webster-thank you for the tour.
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Google
  • Not a disappointment at all! So fun to play on the beach. Gentle enough waves for little kids. There are two access points to the beach. Pick the one best for you. One had lots of flies.
  • Nice state park. Rather large with more than one area to visit. Parking is EXPENSIVE for a secondary attraction. I think Grand Canyon was about the same cost wise. Absolutely love view from end of jetty watching ships and sea lions (45 minute rock hopping but worth the effort). Walk to actual lighthouse is long and light house itself disappointing. view from top of cliff is the main reason to do the walk up
  • This is more of a review on the park's outsourced reservation system. Be aware that the reservation company charges fees over 50% of campsite price. Yes, over 50%! I first tried to reserve a site for one night, for a $25 tent campsite. When the total came up for $38, I was baffled. So we called and the final fee was $40! We asked why and were told there was a $5 out of state resident fee and $10 reservation fee if the reservation was made over the phone, $8 if don't online. When my friend said, no way was she paying over %50 for fees the agent said "well, you run the risk of not getting a site, there are only a few left." It was raining, with a forecast of more rain, so we doubted she was telling the truth. When we arrived the site was $25. When we asked about the out of state resident fee the gal at the gate was baffled, "we don't charge people out of state extra."
  • Lots of amazing trail throughout the park. Trails are well maintained and many are family and pet friendly. Be sure to venture to both lighthouses as they are gorgeous. Don't forget your Discovery Trail Pass and $5 to visit the Coast Guard interpretive center.
  • We stayed at Campsite 143. It was one of many sites that were along the ocean and only a short walk (less than one minute) to the sand. There was a burn ban but we bundled up at night and had glow sticks for the kids. The beach is amazing, the bathrooms were cleaned daily. Our campsite was on a culdsac so kids could ride their bikes without much supervision. There is a small store that has wifi, pizza, and everything you could need to camp, fish, eat... it had a little bit of everything.