Visit Port Angeles WA

Tucked in the rain shadow of the Olympic Mountains, Port Angeles is the epicenter for the Olympic Peninsula with visitors arriving from near and far to experience a magical vacation. As the gateway to the Olympic National Park—a top-of-the-bucket-list worthy wonder and one of few national parks in the Northwest—this smallish seaside-meets-mountain town has nuggets of history, hints of fame, bewitching beauty, and adventure waiting to be discovered. Port Angeles is the spot to start –and stay — during your Olympic Peninsula journey. Continue reading and visit Port Angeles WA!

Port Angeles Weather (When to Visit)

Port Angeles’ coastal climate makes for mild weather year-round. Temperatures range during the daytime from 40 degrees in the winter months to 70 degrees in the summer and fall. Even though Western Washington has a reputation for its abundance of rain, Port Angeles sits in the “banana belt” of Washington. Port Angeles receives, on average, 10 less inches per year of rain than Seattle and has 128 days of mostly sun compared with only 88 for Seattle. All of this sun — and 25 inches of rain — make for superb gardening and farming conditions all year-long in the region.

As for snow, the Olympic Mountains tower over 7,000 feet above Port Angeles making winter activities like skiing, sledding and snowshoeing possible. Even more ideal, the snow stays in the higher elevations leaving the city snow-free so you can bike, hike, golf and beachcomb year-round.

Best Port Angeles Beaches

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Rialto Beach

Rialto was named one of the top 10 best west coast beaches by USA Today. There isn’t a trail to hike along to get to this beach — the beach is your trail. You can choose to hike about two miles to the Hole-in-the-Wall, a sea arch, where you can explore saltwater pools teeming with sea life. Keep an eye out for whales, sea lions, otters, and bald eagles along the way.

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Shi Shi Beach

Bring your hiking shoes for a trip to this beach — and perhaps a surf board! The four-mile round trip walk in is worth every minute though. The Point of Arches is breathtaking so keep walking the extra half mile down the beach. Backpackers will need two permits to stay overnight: the Makah Recreation Pass and an Olympic National Park wilderness permit .

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La Push Beaches (First Beach, Second Beach, Third Beach)

Each sandy beach has a separate trail and is a fairly easy to get to. The three beaches are part of the Quillayute Needles National Wildlife Refuge. First Beach, made famous from the Twilight movie sagas, can be accessed by car. Second Beach is only a mile trek and starts at the trailhead on the Quileute Indian Reservation. Third Beach is a 1.6-mile trek to the beach, which can get kind of messy and slick during stormy weather.

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Ruby Beach

Ruby Beach is a short jaunt (0.25 miles) from the parking lot to the beach where sea stacks and drift wood compliment the turbulent Pacific. Come at low-tide for epic tide pooling. There are no additional fees for accessing this park. Despite the short walk from the parking lot, Ruby Beach isn’t ADA accessible due to drift wood logs at the bottom of the trail.

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Salt Creek Recreation Area

Salt Creek Recreation Area is about 15 miles west of Port Angeles. It is a 196-acre park that features such attractions as tidal pools, campsites, forested areas and access to hiking trails. Catch a wave or a few rays of sunshine on the park’s sandy beach along the coastline of Crescent Bay. The park features a hiking trail from the beach to the old bunker at the Camp Hayden World War II site.

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Best Port Angeles Tours & Activities by Viator

Viator.com – Tours, sightseeing tours, activities & things to do

Best of Olympic National Park from Seattle: All-Inclusive Small-Group Day Tour

Experience the beauty of the great outdoors in the Pacific Northwest on this all-day, guided,small-group tour of Olympic National Park. From beaches and mountains to forests and farms, explore this spectacular wilderness park on a series of nature walks with a naturalist guide. Ride along in a luxury van or SUV, then stroll through the country’s oldest forests or along beaches with a breathtaking view of the Olympic Mountains. A light breakfast and gourmet picnic lunch, plus hotel pickup and drop-off, are included on this tour. Learn more about the Olympic National Park Small Group Day Tour.

Hoh Rain Forest and Rialto Beach Guided Tour in Olympic National Park

The ancient forests, mountains, and rugged beaches of the Olympic National Park provide some spectacular hiking opportunities. On this tour, visit two of the most stunning natural spots—Hoh Rainforest and Rialto Beach—and enjoy short hikes at each destination. With round-trip transport, National Park fees included, and an optional packed lunch, everything is taken care of, so you can focus admiring the views. Learn more about the Hoh Rain Forest & Rialto Beach Guided Tour.

Lake Crescent and Marymere Falls Guided Tour in Olympic National Park

Lake Crescent is a picturesque glacier-fed lake surrounded by a stunning forested mountain range. Just 35 minutes West of Port Angeles, Lake Crescent is one of the most accessible Olympic National Park icons and its close proximity maximizes our time exploring its beauty in the outdoors. Our 4 hour group tour will begin with exploring the initial viewpoints from the Lake Crescent Lodge and its well-positioned dock. Then our tour group will head into the old-growth temperate forest for a 2 mile round trip hike to the 90 foot tall Marymere Falls. Learn more about the Lake Crescent & Marymere Falls Tour.

Hurricane Ridge Guided Tour in Olympic National Park

Hurricane Ridge is one of the most popular hiking destinations in the Olympic National Park, reaching heights of 5,242 feet. On this tour, ride up to the mountain ridge in the comfort of a minivan, then set out on a short guided hike along the ridge. Stop at a number of viewpoints along the way and enjoy magnificent views along the Juan De Fuca Strait and the Olympic Mountains. Learn more about the Hurricane Ridge Guide Tour.

Sol Duc Falls Guided Tour in Olympic National Park

The Sol Duc River is one of the largest watersheds in Olympic National Park and provides visitors one of the most dramatic and beautiful waterfall displays in the park. After a scenic 1 hour van tour to reach the Sol Duc Valley and quick stop for lunch, our Olympic Hiking Co. guide will lead a 2-3 mile roundtrip guided hike to Sol Duc Falls and beyond. Within this stunning river valley, our group will hike amongst the towering old growth forestry eventually reaching a rustic log bridge that crosses the Sol Duc River with a breathtaking view of the iconic Sol Duc Falls. Learn more about the Sol Duc Falls Guided Tour.

Best Port Angeles Restaurants

Bella Italia $11 – 30

Classic Italian fare can be found at Bella Italia in downtown Port Angeles. This fine dining restaurant has been around since 1996 and features fresh local food seafood, produce and herbs from area farms, plus an award-winning wine list. And if you’re a Twilight fan, you can dine where Edward and Bella went on their first date. Bella Italia’s mushroom ravioli, the dish that Bella orders on her date, is one of their most popular dishes and they even have a frozen version sold in local grocery stores. Telephone: 360-457-5442 Web: Bella Italia.

Kokopelli Grill $11 – 30

Kokopelli Grill is one of Port Angeles’ finer dining restaurants in downtown with waterfront views from the upstairs bar area, hand crafted southwest cuisine, fresh local seafood and stiff drinks. They even have an extensive wine list with a full wine shop so you can buy a bottle to take back to your hotel room. Telephone: 360-457-6040 Web: Kokopelli Grill.

Strait Slice Pizza Under $10

A local pizza joint in downtown Port Angeles serving up fresh slices and full-size 18″ pies with a lot of local flavor. Local ingredients, custom toppings, gluten-free pizza options, beer and vintage bottled sodas are served up daily. You can choose to dine outside or in to enjoy the tunes coming from the house vinyl record player. Telephone: 360 504-2430 Web: Strait Slice Pizza.

Toga's Soup House Deli & Gourmet $11 – 30

Toga’s Soup House is just up the hill from downtown Port Angeles and is certainly worth the extra 10 minute walk or short drive. They offer more than soup, too. Everything in this tiny Victorian house is handmade by scratch by Toga himself (say hello to him in the kitchen!). Try one of their daily specials like a hearty Italian meatball open-face sandwich or one of their fresh salads or a bowl of their house-made soup. Enjoy your meal on the patio on a warm day and make sure to order a bottle of Bedford’s Root Beer, a Port Angeles made staple. Telephone: 360-452-1952 Web: Toga's Soup House Deli & Gourmet.

Frugal's Under $10

Frugal’s is a local fast-food burger drive-thru like no other. Frugal’s has several restaurants in Washington state and Montana, but Port Angeles was the first! Since 1988, they’ve perfected the drive-in burger experience: burgers cooked to order, a tasty seasoned option for your french fries, and real deal milkshakes made from seasonal ingredients (Huckleberry!). Check out their website for daily and monthly specials and be sure to taste for yourself why they’ve won so many best burger, best fries and best milkshake awards. Telephone: 360-452-4320 Web: Frugal's.

Best Port Angeles Nightlife

Spruce

Locally-sourced comfort food, beer and cocktails are available at Spruce, located in downtown Port Angeles, Washington. The Spruce restaurant features seasonal menus based on what’s fresh from around the Olympic Peninsula and the Pacific Northwest in a cool cabin-chic atmosphere. Some of their popular menu items include big fancy burgers (made with Oregon beef) and fried chicken with homemade biscuits. They have a yummy selection of small plates ranging from roasted cauliflower to sauerkraut balls, Brussel sprouts and even Scotch eggs. Telephone: 360-504-2951 Web: Spruce.

Kokopelli Grill

Kokopelli Grill is one of Port Angeles’ finer dining restaurants in downtown with waterfront views from the upstairs bar area, hand crafted southwest cuisine, fresh local seafood and stiff drinks. They even have an extensive wine list with a full wine shop so you can buy a bottle to take back to your hotel room. Telephone: 360-457-6040 Web: Kokopelli Grill.

Next Door Gastropub

Next Door Gastropub has tasty casual pub eats and drink in downtown. Their portions are large and they often feature fun and unique food specials like Black & Bleu Totchos (tater tots tossed with cajun spices, topped with ground beef, crumbled bacon, bleu cheese, bbq sauce and ale battered onion straws), which is similar to their Black & Bleu burger, a menu staple. They also have a full cocktail bar, epic Bloody Mary’s and a variety of regional and local craft beer with live music on most Sundays. Telephone: 360-504-2613 Web: Next Door Gastropub.

Camaraderie Cellars

Camaraderie Cellars is located a few minutes from downtown Port Angeles and open on weekends from mid-May through October — or by appointment only.  Their wines are made to be enjoyed with food and crafted with a minimalist approach by Camaraderie’s vintner, Don Corson. The winery has a lovely sculpture garden and outdoor fireplace for enjoying a local Washington “fine wine experience”. Telephone: 360-417-3564 Web: Camaraderie Cellars.

Harbinger Winery

The Harbinger Winery is known for wine made from hand-picked grapes that are then crushed by hand by the Harbinger crew themselves within hours of harvest. The wine drinking scene here is delightfully laid back. If you’re not a wine fan, they also have Northwest craft beer on tap to please your palate. Admire the surf-inspired art by local artist Todd Fischer who also hosts regular “learn to paint like Todd” classes. Telephone: 360-452-4262 Web: Harbinger Winery.

Best Port Angeles Hotels

44 Comments

  1. Seun Afotanju

    Port Angeles is no doubt a place I am wanting to vacation to! I look forward to visiting nice places like the Marymere Falls, the Salt Creek  Recreation Center where I can study and observe the marine life, and watching the whales and wide life which is something I’ve always wanted to do in port Angeles, I can’t wait to start my Port Angeles vacation!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      I am excited for you Seun!  You are going to have a great vacation in Port Angeles.  Please let me know if I can answer any further questions for you 

      Reply
  2. Billy.W.

    Great information Leahrae!   Me and the wife have been looking to take a trip to the Oregon coast and not super familiar with the area.  This post, along with a LOT of your reviews is very helpful for to start planning.  Appreciate all the work you have done, thank you.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you Billy.  I am glad I can be of assistance in your vacation planning 🙂

      Reply
  3. Nuttanee

    Salt creek recreation area is breathtaking. This list is amazing thank you for taking your time coming up with things to do there. How many days do you suggest we should spend there? I love Kayaking, I always do it when I visit my family in Thailand, it would be nice to try that in WA. Whale watching would be nice too, do they come up every time? This will be my first. Now I know where my husband and I can go for this year vacation, too cold here in NYC. 🙂

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      It is too cold in NYC!  I would go for at least a week, maybe a week and a half if you can.  Then you can account for travel time as well and still have plenty of time to enjoy Port Angeles.  The best time to see whales is from March to October during there migration in the area.  It will be in full swing during this time, and if you are there during these months, you will see whales 🙂

      Reply
  4. Darren

    I love coming to this site as it always reviews some wonderful places to visit and always amazes me.

    Port Angeles has just been added to my places to visit as the landscape is my ideal type to experience. We all go to the normal tourist destinations but you always bring destinations that one would not think about or know existed.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      I am glad you are enjoying visiting beach travel destinations and learning about some great beach travel locations  I review 🙂  Thanks for the visit!

      Reply
  5. Jon

    I’ve been all over the United States, but never to your corner of the country. That’s something I’ve been meaning to rectify for some time, and now I have another reason.

    I honestly knew nothing about Port Angeles but your review almost makes me feel like I’ve been there.  A very thorough, practical guide for newcomers. And the pictures are beautiful. 

    Do you have a favorite hiking trail in that area? That’s one of the things my wife and I have always enjoyed. If nothing else, it feels good to move around after a long trip!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Definitely do the Madison Falls Trail head.  That is probably the best in my opinion.  Yes, it does feel good to move around after a long trip!  Glad you enjoyed learning about Port Angeles Washington.  Thanks for the visit!

      Reply
  6. tcheck

    Haven’t been to port Angeles in quite sometime but this review make me want to head up there this spring,i never realized how little rain you get, 10 inches in winter is a treat.When people  think of Seattle ,wet comes to mind I’m guilty of that myself, that area is a wonderland of nature ,great fishing and hiking,the photos in this post are awesome and makes me realize how the town his grown ,i also love to travel on the ferry system with my vehicle thanks for the inspiration

     

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You know I used to travel to Seattle a LOT for work.  And the funny thing was, I very rarely got rained on.  I know that Anchorage and Juneau Alaska get more rain from what I have experienced.  The ferry is a fun economical treat!  I agree!

      Reply
  7. Kohl

    What an awesome description of Port Angeles WA. It seems like a great place to travel to! Although I have travelled, I haven’t gone to a beach destination like this, which I would love to do. What is your favourite part of this destination? I like the looks of the Salt Creek Recreation Area. Thanks for the great article! 

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You know Kohl, I just love the beautiful scenery and walking along the beach.  It’s a little cold for my blood, but it is definitely worth visiting.  Glad you enjoyed my Visit Port Angeles WA review.

      Reply
  8. Billy.W.

    Wow Leahrae,this destination looks awesome!! I am from Australia so I had to google map this place and It looks amazing!! Just across the channel from Canada,another place I dream about getting to !! I Like how you have put together a comprehensive list on where to eat,stay and the nightlife.The images of the scenic locations are stunning as well.Just a side note,I also browsed through your site and looked at the review you did on Cairns, Australia.You have done a great job on the info provided on this as well.How do I know that?? I live there lol !! Great work Leahrae !! :))

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Thank you so much Billy and I am glad you enjoyed and you have a new beach destination to travel to that will be much different than Australia, which is hard to top!  Hopefully you can visit Port Angeles WA soon!

      Reply
  9. Todd Matthews

    Living in Washington one day is something I’m strongly considering, though I’d likely prefer the center of the state. Reading this article gives me an excellent vacationing idea if I decided to venture over into the western part of Washington. The scenery is tremendous, which is what would attract me for any vacation. Judging from the pictures alone, traveling over to Port Angeles would be a trip for a lifetime. 

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Yes, It would be a trip of a lifetime.  I guess it depends on what you are looking for, but sounds like Washington is perfect for you 🙂  Please let me know if you need any additional information.

      Reply
  10. Abagatan

    I can see through this review that Port Angeles is a strategic area that posses an endearing nature. I hope someday I can go there to see the place and the people who love to continue in maintaining the beauty of that place.

    Off all the things you’ve mentioned here, I would like to know about the peace situation in that place. Is there any history of kidnappings, hostages or any activities of bad fate and reputation that scares people?

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Oh my goodness, you will find very little if any crime in Port Angeles.  It is a REALLY safe beach side community and listed as one of the top ten to live in, in the U.S.  So all around, it’s a gem!  

      Reply
  11. Eric Cantu

    This area looks unbelievable! The Pacific Northwest is an AMAZING part of the world. Everything is so pure. These images you placed in the article make me want to go back! The waterfalls, blue skies, mountains… and a point you made here that many forget about: the wineries! Nicely written article! Bookmarking this for my nephew who is looking to make a trip to that area of the world! Thank you!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You are very welcome Eric, and I am glad you enjoyed.  Thanks for visiting beach travel destinations.

      Reply
  12. Kenechi

    I have come to find out that porte Angeles has a lot of attractions and beautiful things of nature. Marymene falls is beautiful on its own and like you stated it’s the most popular landfalls in Olympic peninsula. These beautiful things of nature is worth visiting during a vacation trip. From the image, I admire the Madison Creck falls which is located within the Olympic National Park just as you narrated in your article and images. Thanks for also showing me the things I can do in Porte Angeles. They are numerous and I love them all.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Great Kenechi, I am so glad you enjoyed.  Please come back when you are ready to start planning 🙂

      Reply
  13. Murasa

    Wow, I’ve been to Seattle, but I haven’t gotten to Port Angeles. I usually go by Clipper Vacations to get to Seattle first. I think the next time I’m in Victoria, BC, I’ll definitely take a weekend to go to Port Angeles, especially to look around at the beautiful trails there!

    I’m curious, I happen to be a motorcycle rider. What would you say about the roads around there? What road trails would you recommend in the area?  I love to rent a bike and just zip around the back roads there.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Fantastic, you will love the area.  As far as the best motorcycle routes, I looked that up and click here for this great list through Washington.  If you have any further questions, please don’t hesitate to ask.

      Reply
  14. Kinggold19

    For those that loves TV o travel and explore the beauty of nature, this is the place that  be. Port Angeles WA serves as an attraction center for it’s numerous activities. Compared to some other places, this beach is located around mountains and has favorable weather conditions, going about the beach, there is already made transportation for easy access. Check it out!!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      I agree!  Thanks for stopping by and visiting beach travel destinations!

      Reply
  15. kmv

    We are recent transplants to the beach life from the Portland, Oregon area….we love it so much that even our vacations are at the coast.  We’ve spent a lot of time in the Seattle area, and have (for years) been wanted to expand out to Port Angeles and surrounding areas.

    So glad we found your post!  Will save us a ton of time in planning.

    It doesn’t sound like there a really bad time to go.  How busy do things get during spring break?  We have two kids, HS and college, and plan on heading up to Washington during their break.  If it is too busy during this time, we might opt to wait until school is officially out.

    My wife and I enjoy learning about local history…any idea if there are some good museums in the area?

    BTW – The video got us totally hooked!

    -K&K

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Ok, I know a few people who actually took their families there for Spring Break and it was not too crowded.  I think it would be a great time and you will all enjoy 🙂  Please let me know if you need any additional information.  I would be glad to help!

      Reply
  16. Dhayours

    Port Angeles, another one to my lists. For someone to go on a vacation as this from where I am, it’ll take a whole lot of budgeting and savings and planning to do. First you consider flight tickets. It’s an awesome place to visit with your wife and kids. An awesome vacation location. 

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Great I happen to agree 🙂  I hope you and your family can visit soon!

      Reply
  17. Olympia Francesca

    Visiting Washington state has been on my list for sometime now due to my unfamiliarity with the state. I feel like I just visited Port Angeles in my mind with the amazing descriptions you have given. It seems amazing.After reading all this, I can’t decide weather I prefer to go in the winter to do all the fun snow activities, or enjoy the amazing scenery and hiking during the other seasons.I had no idea your could take a ferry to Canada. That’s awesome. Thanks for a great read about one of the most interesting places in the US.Port Angeles, here we come!Warm wishes,Olympia

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      You are very welcome Olympia!  I am so glad you enjoyed and learned a bit about Port Angeles Washington.  Thanks for stopping by!

      Reply
  18. charles39

    this is  the most beautiful  place i have yet to see if anything to go  with the video it  is a must visit place at least once in a lifetime  all that beauty need to be discovered and enjoyed to the fullest  on that is beauty of life where you can travel and get to see some amazing places on earth you might never thought that exist

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      I agree Charles!  I am glad you enjoyed and thank you for visiting beach travel destinations.

      Reply
  19. Henry

    Hi! I have been planning to go on vacations. And I always like to have an option right here in the States. And Port Angels is a great option.

    I want to go to the Caribbean. But, chances are that this year it may not be. So, I’ve started to explore other options and this one that has clicked.

    Thank you for listing the attractions. Neighbors have commented that Salt Creek Recreation Area is a must. And we can’t afford to not visit Marymere Falls! We’re Italians so we’ll stop at Bella Italia, that’s for sure!

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Oh Bella Italia is probably the best restaurant in Port Angeles, perfect choice!  And your trip to Port Angeles will be substantially more economical than the Caribbean, so you will have extra money to have a wonderful time!  Thanks for visit my Visit Port Angeles WA review.

      Reply
  20. Daniel

    I really think that this article is very helpful and informative. I have never been to Port Angeles but I heard great stories about this place. I would like to visit it this summer with my family and I see that it is not so expensive for the average family. I will visit Olympic Lodge hotel site and see the benefits but having wifi they already buy me.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Great Daniel, and you will find that Port Angeles is not going to be to hard on the budget.  Please let me know if you need any additional information.

      Reply
  21. Helen

    Love the immediate calming effect of the main header photo… I already feel in a much better mood, than I did before I landed here. It is perfect for the website… a lovely sandy beach and blue blue sea. I have no idea where Port Angeles is, I would have liked a little map to show where it was but maybe people who are coming to the page know.  I am not from the USA so whilst I like to think I know where Washington state is (WA?) I am not absolutely sure. However the description of the area, the sights to see, things to do, places to stay was comprehensive and very informative but not without the feeling and enthusiasm of the writer.   The review followed a natural flow through and I wanted to keep on reading further to see where it was. When it came to the weather and rainfall, perhaps a little chart would be good? Give a visual as to when the best time to visit the area would be? Thought it was extremely well written and I will be looking through the other months to see if there are any places Im thinking of going to this year although, as a mom of a tennis player, we dont often get chance to go to beach holidays although we live by one in Sotogrande. 

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      Yes, you are correct that Port Angeles in in Washington state.  And for beach travel, Port Angeles is a bit unique and has it’s own beach flair.  Definitely worth investigating.  Thanks for visiting beach travel destinations.

      Reply
  22. Holly

    This looks right up my alley! I’ve actually never been to Washington, but I’ve always wanted to go. This looks beautiful and whale watching is on my bucket list. I love that it’s such a temperate area but that it receives more sun and less rain than Seattle. How far is it from Seattle? I wonder if it would be feasible to plan a trip that spends some time in the city but a good amount of time enjoying the beautiful scenery of Port Angeles.

    Reply
    1. Leahrae (Post author)

      It’s going to be quite a distance from Seattle to Port Angeles, about 2 1/2 hours.  But you could start in Seattle and then ferry on over to Port Angeles.  Would make a great trip!  Thanks for your digital visit to Port Angeles 🙂

      Reply

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