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10 Must Visit Places for a Washington State RV Roadtrip

Updated: Dec 12, 2023

Washington State is a paradise for nature lovers, adventure enthusiasts, and mountain explorers. From snow-capped mountains, to volcanoes, to rainforests, to lively cities, to beautiful coastline, and more; Washington State has something for just about every type of traveler! Although you could easily spend 1 week in just one spot here, the best way to see the state is via an RV roadtrip because there is so much to see, and you’re going to want to see it all… trust me!

This blog post is sponsored by RVshare; all opinions and thoughts are my own.


About Washington

Washington is located within the Pacific Northwest of the United States. It is the 18th largest state in the country, and is known for its diverse and varied geography. The state is also one of the safest, having a very low crime rate and beating the vast majority of the rest of the United States in police statistics. Meaning it’s a great place to travel to, for solo travelers as well! Due to its natural beauty and bustling cities, the state sees an average of 100 million visitors per year!



Best Way to Get Around

Since Washington is so diverse, I don’t recommend just visiting one place or one city during your trip. Instead, get a camper van or RV and go from place to place on your own terms! This is the absolute BEST way to explore the state. I recommend booking with RVshare (I did for my trip) because they have a variety of RV’s and a range of prices, with many great RV options in Washington. RVshare has everything from affordable pop-up’s to luxury motorhomes, so there is something for every kind of traveler with any kind of budget. We got a class B RV during our time and I think this is the perfect sized one for 2 people. It came equipped with a shower, toilet, dining table, fully stocked kitchen, and lots of storage (so everything you would need for the perfect road trip!).


Also, there's no shortage of campsites in the state from ones in the national parks and forests, to Hipcamp’s, and more. So finding an affordable, safe spot to park your RV at night is not an issue at all! During our time, we booked all our campsites through Hipcamp and had really great experiences.


The only thing to keep in mind is gas will be more expensive with an RV, but what I have found is that in the long run it’s honestly still cheaper because instead of paying for a rental car and a hotel, you get 2 in one with RV’s. Plus you would still be paying for gas in a rental car anyways! So it really isn’t more expensive, if anything you save money doing a camper van/RV trips!


How Many Days to Spend

How many days should you spend road tripping around Washington State? Well, honestly, I could spend months. The state is so beautiful, and you would never run out of things to do. But I know this isn’t realistic, SO I would say a good amount of time is around 10 days! I did my road trip for 10 days and although I could’ve spent longer at each place, I felt it was the perfect amount of time to see the main things I wanted to see, have some chill days and some adventurous days, but not feel too rushed.

The ideal time spent for the loop I did is 10-14 days. If you have less time, and can only go for 7 days, I would recommend doing a shorter route that I will also outline below for you.


When to Visit

The best time to visit Washington State is during the summer months of July-September when the weather is warm and dry. July and August are the warmest and driest months with average temperatures around 75 degrees F. But since these are the warmest months, they also are the peak high season, because of this it can be very busy in the national parks and more difficult to find RV’s and campsites available. To avoid this, I recommend visiting in the early fall months of the end of August, September, or early October instead when the weather is still warmer, it’s not the rainy season yet, and there are less crowds.



Must Visit Places for a Washington State Road trip

Seattle

I recommend starting your trip by flying into Seattle (Seattle-Tacoma International Airport). Here you can rent an RVshare and hit the road for your epic road trip! Today, spend the day exploring Seattle and be sure to visit the Pike Place Market, Alki Beach, the Space Needle, and of course one of Seattle's famous coffee shops, a local favorite is Mercury’s Coffee Company. There is also a lot of great camping near the city, we found a great one on HipCamp.


Olympic National Park

To get to Olympic National Park from Seattle you can easily catch a ride on the Bainbridge Ferry which you can bring your RV onto and take a scenic ride towards Olympic National Park. Once arriving onto Bainbridge, continue onwards for another 2.5 hours until arriving at Olympic National Park. There are a lot of great places to see in the park, but the ‘must see’ is Hoh Rainforest. It is the only rainforest environment in all of the USA and is a very unique place to visit with its lush, mossy greenery. There are also a lot of great RV rentals around this area as well to consider.


Mt Rainier National Park

The most visited national park in the state, and for good reason. It’s very close to Seattle and has incredible hiking and views! I recommend arriving at this specific national park early in the day as it is very popular and can easily become packed during the day. A few hikes you definitely need to check out in the park include: Myrtle Falls {will add stats about the hike}, Mount Fremont Fire Lookout {will include stats on hike}, and Reflection Lake {include stats}.


Diablo Lake

Located within North Cascades National Park, in the northern part of the state you will find this turquoise colored alpine lake. The color is so beautiful and blue and the landscape is so stunning you won’t believe your eyes. This lake makes for a great stop, located right on the side of Highway 20 for some photos at the Diablo Lake Overlook. But, if you have some more time there is a great hike called Thunder Knob that gives you a more off-the-beaten path view of the lake. Or if you have an inflatable kayak or paddle-board, you are more than welcome to enjoy the lake from the water like we did!


Leavenworth

A magical, Bavarian-styled village in the central park of the state along the Cascade Mountains. This town truly makes you feel like you’re walking the streets of Germany. It is so quaint, and simply magical especially during wintertime. You can sip on some German beer and eat a pretzel while taking in the town’s beauty while sitting along the river that flows on the edge of the Main Street. Besides Bavarian-styled restaurants, there are also other food options and fine dining restaurants. For the adventure-seekers there is an Adventure Park just down the road, and many beautiful hiking trails. There are many campsites in the area so finding a great place to park your RV for the night will be no problem.


Lake Wentachee

A lesser known lake just outside of Leavenworth, this picturesque, mountainous lake is worth a stop. This is a great place to cool off with a swim during the summer months, or see it on the water and go paddle boarding, or even just relax at the beach with some drinks and friends! It is free to visit and very easy to get to, you just need to pay for parking upon arrival. I recommend spending the night in the town of Leavenworth if you want to visit Lake Wentachee.


Yakima

Known for its wineries and apple orchards, the small town of Yakima makes for a great stop in between Mt. Rainier National Park and Leavenworth. It’s a very interesting area because it has a very different landscape than the snow-capped mountains of Mt. Rainier that are so close. But the area around Yakima is beautiful and unique, dryer and more desert looking. There are also great RV rentals near the city!


Mt. Baker

A great lesser known hike in the state is Artist Ridge to see Mt. Baker volcano and surrounding area from a great viewpoint. This is a very scenic, easy, 2 mile hike that will likely be one of your favorite ones during your whole trip. There is no entrance fee, but the reason it is lesser known is because it is a bit further to reach since you have to drive around the mountains. It takes longer than it should. I recommend visiting after your day in the North Cascades seeing Diablo Lake. It is 2.5 hours from Diablo Lake to the Artist Ridge hike following Highway 20, turning right onto Highway 9 which eventually turns into Highway 549 and continuing following it until the trailhead.


Colchuck Lake

The most stunning alpine lake in the state is Colchuck Lake, located just outside of Leavenworth making it a great day trip from the town. Although I recommend everyone to visit because of how beautiful it is, it is not easy to get to. Getting to the trailhead is only a 34 minute drive, but also note that part of that road is gravel so I recommend having a car that has 4-wheel drive. We drove here with our RV and had no problems! To reach Colchuck Lake itself is a little more difficult. It requires a challenging, 8.5 mile round trip hike. But don’t let those numbers scare you, I saw people of all ages and all physical ability doing the hike and completing it! Although not easy and you definitely need to be sure you are prepared with plenty of water, snacks, good hiking boots, sunscreen, sunglasses, and a supportive hiking backpack.




In Conclusion,

If a road trip through Washington State wasn’t on your bucket list, it should be now! During my time here, it quickly became my favorite state because of all the stunning landscapes, amazing food, coffee culture, and beautiful hikes! I truly can’t recommend visiting it enough. And if you do decide to visit, be sure to do it via RVshare to both save money and have an unforgettable experience.


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