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Olympic National Park

(4.8/5 based on 5,000+ reviews for top 10 attractions)
Things to do: nature, scenic drive, beaches
In Olympic National Park, ancient rainforests and ocean tidal pools at lower elevations contrast with wildflower-filled alpine meadows and snowcapped peaks. The park's 373,120 hectares (922,000 acres) include numerous hiking trails that stretch from moist, mossy, and leafy valleys up to jagged mountain peaks that hold snow into summer. Anglers cast their lines into some of the hundreds of lakes and streams that hold 37 species of fish, including coho, chinook, and sockeye salmon, while birders try to spot a few of the 250 species, including blue grouse, belted kingfisher, warblers, woodpeckers, kinglets, and sparrows. Tide pools hold colorful life forms such as green anemones and purple starfish, gray whales appear off the coast from March to May, and black bears, cougars, and elk roam the park's interior year-round. The lower elevations of the park remain snow-free through winter; the extra moisture during the rainy season brightens the forest's greenery. Plan how to spend your time in Olympic National Park and other destinations in United States using our United States itinerary maker.
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Where to stay

Many visitors to Olympic National Park choose to pitch a tent at one of 16 campgrounds, many of which stay open throughout the year. The park also offers a mix of lodge rooms, motel rooms, and cabins thanks to two lodges and two resorts. On the Pacific Coast, the Kalaloch Lodge stands as the most isolated of these. If you prefer to rest your head outside the park, consider staying in Port Townsend. This artsy waterside community northeast of the park offers plenty of inns and bed and breakfasts, but they fill up quickly in summer, so reserve ahead if possible. Port Angeles sits a bit closer to the park and offers more functional accommodations in the form of motels and hotels, though you'll also find waterfront inns and cottages in the area. Communities on the park's western side offer a rustic vibe, but they also take more time to get to if you're coming from Seattle.
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