Beaches in Washington can be found all along the coast. These aquatic locations include rocky seashores in Olympic National Park and the long shorelines of the Long Beach Peninsula.
Some beaches offer traditional sandy pursuits like kite flying and castle building. Washington’s more remote beaches offer a variety of activities, including tide pool spelunking and sea stack admiration. Additionally, almost every beach in Washington offers breathtaking sunsets at the end of the day due to its general western orientation.
Swimming, fishing, and touring decommissioned military barracks are additional beach activities in Washington. Although summer is the most popular season for beachgoing, the winter months are also a great time to disconnect next to the water. The “off-season” is the best time to see migrating whales along the coast, and winter storms frequently bring a mesmerizing roll to the tides.
Plan your upcoming beach getaway using our list of the 10 Best Washington Beaches
1. Washington Beaches: Ruby Beach, Olympic National Park
Ruby Beach is a prime example of Olympic National Park’s wild coastline. A postcard-perfect landscape is defined by dramatic sea stacks and an abundance of driftwood less than eight miles north of the Kalaloch Lodge. Ruby is one of the most well-liked beaches in the park due to its picturesque seaside location.
From a parking area, a paved path descends steeply to the beach, slowly revealing the breathtaking ocean view with each turn. Ruby Beach’s rocky shoreline is better for exploring than sunbathing on a towel. Ruby Beach features one of Olympic National Park’s top hiking trails and offers plenty of space to explore both north and south.
At Ruby Beach, the ebb and flow of the tides reveal a diverse world of aquatic creatures. The region is well known for other kinds of wildlife, such as bird nesting colonies, in addition to the abundance of tide pools.
2. Washington Beaches: Long Beach Peninsula
The vast Long Beach Peninsula is easily accessible from the city of Long Beach in southwest Washington. The 28-mile stretch of uncrowded beach on the peninsula offers peace and quiet.
The peninsula has six state park units in addition to plenty of opportunities to enjoy the saltwater air alone. Cape Disappointment, the jewel of these state park units, is located at the southern tip of the peninsula and does not live up to its name.
A half mile from the city, the Long Beach Boardwalk offers a beautiful ocean view. During the annual August Washington State International Kite Festival, the boardwalk offers a great vantage point. A paved Discovery Trail also leaves Long Beach and meanders along the coast for additional exploration.
3. Pacific Beach State Park
A neighborhood to the state’s coastline. Less than 90 miles separate this thriving seaside community from Olympia and its access to the region’s beaches. Pacific Beach State Park is the location of the closest ocean attraction.
There are 17 acres and more than 2,300 feet of shoreline in Pacific Beach State Park. At the state park’s campground, visitors set up tents and leave RVs while day visitors spend the majority of their time strolling the beach. Every visitor has the option to build a small bonfire next to the waves in the evening.
4. Washington Beaches: Fort Worden Beach
Fort Worden served as a strategic military base and the residence of thousands of soldiers who had been trained to defend Puget Sound a century ago. On the Olympic Peninsula, this former military installation is now a well-liked historical park. There are two miles of enticing saltwater shoreline spread across its 432 acres.
The beach at Fort Worden promotes leisure time. It’s simple to relax to the sound of crashing waves and lose yourself in the distant sight of the North Cascades.
The 120-foot dock encourages fishing activities as well. All varieties of watercraft can find ample mooring at the park, and kayak rentals are also offered.
5. Rosario Beach
Deception Pass is regarded as one of Washington’s top state parks by more than two million annual visitors. The famous Deception Pass Bridge connects Whidbey and Fidalgo Islands in Puget Sound to create this seaworthy state park. Rosario Beach, which is located on the northern and less populated Fidalgo Island, has fantastic tide pools and a headland hiking trail.
Rosario Head is sandwiched between two beaches that make up Rosario Beach. This coastline’s curved northern and southern portions both have rocky shorelines surrounded by drift logs.
Near Rosario Head, both beaches offer fantastic tide pooling opportunities. Rosario Head is traversed by a hiking trail that makes a loop for a fantastic view of Puget Sound and the Deception Pass Bridge.
6. Seabrook Beach
Seabrook, a small coastal town in central Washington, is a great place to visit for the weekend. Several colonial-style houses can be found in the Seabrook neighborhood, which is located above the Pacific Ocean on a sea cliff. A lot of the homes can be rented out for vacations.
Many of the Seabrook vacation rentals are surprisingly inexpensive. Due to its charming lodging options and convenient location (2.5 hours from Seattle), Seabrook is a favorite among urban dwellers seeking a getaway.
The real getaway is found on the beach itself. The only way to get to the beach below Seabrook is down some steep steps. A broad beach and forested headlands welcome leisurely days spent exploring the surf once you reach the shore.
7. Rialto Beach, Olympic National Park
The rocky shoreline of this well-known beach in Olympic National Park adds to the area’s wild scenery. As do the impressive sea stacks that rise out of the water. The space is defined by enormous drift logs, and together these aesthetics create a surreal atmosphere for visitors.
The distance from the parking lot to Rialto Beach is only a short stroll. Hikers can continue north on the rocky shoreline from here as far as their energy levels will allow. In this environment at the edge of the continent, backpacking is also common, but overnight camping requires a permit.
8. Ocean Shores
A small coastal town called Ocean Shores is located 2.5 hours from Seattle. Ocean Shores is a popular destination for both family vacations and romantic getaways thanks to the expansive Pacific Ocean.
On a typical beach day, people fly kites, look for sand dollars, and unwind as the waves crash against the shore. In addition to offering guided horseback rides, boat rentals, and chartered fishing excursions, the community also offers other surf-related activities. Cute shops and regional restaurants line the streets of Ocean Shores, providing additional entertainment.
Ocean Shores’ North Jetty is a great spot to observe large waves in action. A large sandy beach is also part of this man-made rock wall.
9. Golden Gardens Park, Seattle
One of the most well-known beaches in the Seattle area is Golden Gardens, which is located on Puget Sound in Ballard. This vast ocean area draws both locals and tourists for a variety of reasons, including its expansive sandy beach. Other sandy activities on the beach include volleyball and bonfires in addition to general beach lounging.
Seattle’s wild surroundings are brought home by the views of Puget Sound and the distant Olympic Mountains. A cement promenade that runs parallel to the shore allows visitors to take in all that grandeur. Wetland forest areas with a number of trails to explore the park’s verdant surroundings are also included.
10. Westhaven State Park Beach
Westhaven State Park Beach is one of the best surfing beaches in Washington. It has breathtaking views of the North Pacific Ocean and a long stretch of sandy beach.
If you want to spend your vacation riding your surfboard on big, powerful waves, Westhaven State Park Beach is your best bet.
This coastline offers ideal surfing conditions, making it a surfer’s paradise.
Aside from surfing, you can spend time relaxing by the beach with your children while flying kites, helping them build sandcastles and sculptures, playing catch with a frisbee or ball, having a beachfront picnic, and so on.
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