Find your next Scenic Drive a different road trip awaits

Can it be August already?

Summer may be half over — but there’s still time to plan a vacation. Not every road trip has to be cross-country — consider exploring your own state. For us, it’s been an active staycation in Seattle with a lot of visiting family and friends. We love nothing better than showing off the natural beauty of Washington State. It’s what inspired us to create Here are a few highlights we think everyone should visit.

Head to the Mountains!

Jaw-dropping views await whether you hike or not.

Mount Rainier
Mount Rainier
When viewing from Seattle or surrounding cities, you often can’t see Mount Rainier at all. And when you do, you’ll wonder how 14,411-feet managed to hide. But drive up to Paradise or Sunrise and in-your-face-views will knock your socks off! On the way, don’t miss the Grove of the Patriarchs Trail with a suspension bridge and towering trees over 1,000 years old.
Mount St Helens
Mount Saint Helens
Mount Saint Helens erupted on May 18, 1980 and today you can explore around the volcano and marvel at its stoic beauty and the landscape which continues to regenerate. The Johnston Ridge Observatory is jam-packed with informative exhibits including one you can jump on! Don’t miss a stop at Coldwater Lake which was created after the eruption. An accessible wooden boardwalk features interpretive signs.
Mount Baker
Mount Baker
Mount Baker averages over 600 inches of snow per year, and you’ll find snowy patches on the trails way into August. Alpine lakes and resplendent wildflowers color the glacier-carved terrain. Don’t miss Artist Ridge Trail, an easy mile long loop, or Picture Lake, aptly named for its divine reflections. While exploring Mount Baker, most of the views will be of Mount Shuksan, pictured above.

Urban Trekking

Head out to these easily-accessed natural sites close to downtown Seattle. Best of all, they’re free!

Seattle Olympic Sculpture Park
Walk, jog, or bike along the trail at Myrtle Edwards Park. The trail begins at the Olympic Sculpture Park (must explore!) and travels west alongside Puget Sound for 1.25-miles passing pocket beaches, a rose garden, a fishing pier, and lots of really cool trees. Midway, the West Thomas Street Pedestrian Bridge, offers access to/from Lower Queen Anne, making this a semi-long jaunt to/from the Seattle Center area.
Seattle Discovery Park
Discovery Park in Magnolia is an urban gem. Boasting 534-acres, hike through forest to bluff views of Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains. Walk down to the driftwood-strewn beach which is too cold for swimming, but perfect for tide-pooling. Look for basking seals and soaring bald eagles. The lighthouse is not open to the public, but is very photogenic. There is a shuttle to the beach on summer weekends.
Ballard Locks
Watch yachts, small boats, and kayaks navigate their way through the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks (Ballard Locks). Stroll through the Carl S. English Jr. Botanical Garden, then peer through the windows at the Ballard Fish Ladder to observe salmon on their journey to spawn. At Commodore Park, you’ll find Seattle’s largest colony of Great Blue Herons nesting from February to August.

Our Newest Scenic Drive in South Carolina

South Carolina

Take a historic journey along the Ashley River. Plantations and expansive gardens dot the route along with significant Revolutionary and Civil War sites. This pastoral scenic drive makes an illuminating route to Charleston, or a must-experience day trip if you’re already there.

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