Olympic National Park

Olympic National Park

National Park · Washington, United States

About

Olympic National Park is a United States national park located in the state of Washington, on the Olympic Peninsula. The park has four basic regions: the Pacific coastline, alpine areas, the west side temperate rainforest and the forests of the drier east side. Within the park there are three distinct ecosystems which are sub-alpine forest and wildflower meadow, temperate forest, and the rugged Pacific Shore.

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If soaking in a natural hot spring surrounded by an untouched snow-covered forest is your scene, then head to the volcanic grounds of Washington’s Olympic Peninsula. Here you’ll find perfect seclusion for your dip, but you’ll have to work for it: The hot springs in Olympic National Park can only be accessed by a 10-mile trek deep into the woods. As you make the journey, keep an eye out for salmon swimming through the park’s crystal-clear rivers.
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National Parks with Winter Experiences
Roadtrippers11 places
The Olympic Peninsula is one big fall foliage tapestry. It’s hard to go wrong when the entire drive along the Elwha River between Highway 101 and the Olympic Park entrance is renowned for fall color explosions. From Hurricane Ridge, with its magnificent mile-high, 360-degree views, visitors can spy Mount Baker, Victoria BC, the San Juan Islands and what seems like millions of trees. Once on top, hiking trails and picnic spots are yours for the taking.
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Seattle Road Trips to See Fall Foliage
Tinybeans9 places
The North Coast Route weaves along some of the most remote shoreline in the Lower 48. Famous Washington spectacles of coastal rainforest, sea stacks, arches, headlands, river mouths, giant driftwood, rocky shores, and sandy beaches are spread along a 30-mile stretch of nearly undeveloped coast in Olympic National Park. The North Coast Route is a partially maintained backcountry trail with designated campsites.
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The Best Backpacking Trips in Washington
FATMAP5 places
Covering nearly one million acres, Olympic National Park provides three distinct ecosystems – glaciated mountains, rugged Pacific coastline, and lush temperate forests – and their distinct flora and fauna for nature-lovers to explore. Over 95% of the park is designated wilderness, and visitors can enjoy a range of activities, including camping, kayaking, fishing, climbing, boating, and more.
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Discover America's National Parks
National Park Foundation63 places
Located in the Pacific Northwest state of Washington, Olympic National Park is a spectacular area of almost one million acres (405,000ha). Featuring several distinct ecosystems, from glacier-capped mountains to old-growth forests and rugged coastline, the scenery is truly diverse and breathtaking. Established in 1938, the land is home to an impressive array of animal life, while the sea is home to whales, dolphins and sea otters.
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Most Beautiful National Parks in the USA
Culture Trip11 places
An iconic landscape of the Pacific Northwest, Olympic National Park covers nearly a million acres. About 90 miles outside of Seattle, this park offers the perfect escape from the bustle of the city. Go fishing, take a hike, explore tidepools, or even camp out for the night. During certain seasons you may see whales off the coast or spot a Roosevelt Elk in the park’s lower valleys and rainforests. And if you’re spending the night at Olympic, make sure to check out a ranger-led night sky program.
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National Parks in the Emerald City
National Park Foundation8 places
With 95% of the park designated as wilderness, as well as an absence of human-caused light, Washington’s Olympic National Park is a great place to experience natural darkness and the splendor of our night sky. Warm summer months bring drier weather conditions to the Olympic Peninsula – good conditions for catching a glimpse of the natural lightscape. Night sky programs are offered in the park during the summer – check ahead for exact dates and times.
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National Parks Perfect for Stargazing
National Park Foundation44 places
Encompassing nearly a million acres, Olympic protects a vast wilderness, thousands of years of human history, and several distinctly different ecosystems, including glacier-capped mountains, old-growth temperate rain forests, and over 70 miles of wild coastline. You'd need more than a week to see everything, but don't miss attractions like Hurricane Ridge (for views of Mount Olympus), Lake Crescent (rent kayaks!), the Hoh Rainforest, and the sight of salmon cascading along Sol Duc River in fall.
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The most scenic national parks in the US
Time Out10 places
"With glacier-packed peaks, ancient forests, and a rugged coastline, Olympic is arguably one of the most diverse national parks in the country,” writes Brad Lane on PlanetWare.com. With so many options available spread over almost a million acres of land, figuring out where to start is often the biggest challenge! In this guidebook, you’ll discover a broad selection of Olympic National Park’s very best hikes.
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Best Hikes in Olympic National Park
FATMAP10 places
With 95% of its acres designated as wilderness, much of this Seattle park is best explored on foot over many days. But that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy the park on a day trip. In fact, that may be one of the best ways to get a taste for everything this diverse piece of the Pacific Northwest has to offer.
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National Park Urban Escapes
National Park Foundation15 places
With distinct zones – mountains, forests, coast – Olympic is like three parks in one, and all are accessible in winter (with a little extra prep, of course). Traveling from Olympia, WA, Highway 101 circles the park, providing access to all areas and entry points. You’ll find Hurricane Ridge 17 miles south of Port Angeles in the north, complete with a warm and cozy visitor center and rental shop for winter gear. Coastal destinations are on the west side and forests on the south to southwest.
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National Park Winter Wonderlands
National Park Foundation15 places

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Accessibility Features
Wheelchair Accessible
Good for Kids
Pets Welcome
Accepts Credit Cards

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