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Washington Quick Facts

Uniquely Washington: Geoducks, Orca Whales, Mt. Rainier
Must-See: Snoqualmie Falls
Most Unusual: Mt. St. Helens, sight of the 1980 eruption
Highest Point: Mt. Rainier, 14,410 feet
Food to Try: Clam Chowder and salmon from the Seattle Waterfront

What to Do in Washington

1 Ride the ferry boats

2 Hike in the rain forest

3 See a banana slug

4 Feast on seafood

5 Go whale watching

6 Sleep under the stars

7 Hike through a pine forest

Off The Beaten Path | Washington

Washington State is a great destination throughout the year. In the northwest region the weather is mild even during the winter, although there is quite a lot of rain. Summertime in Washington is amazingly beautiful with the warm sun and green plants. Visitors to Washington will find that although the eastern and western parts of the state are very different, there are all sorts of fun things to do on both sides of the mountains. Throughout the state visitors will find plenty of recreation, delightful towns, stunning island vistas and even ferry rides. Here are just a few of the state's amazing destinations in no particular order.

The little town of Leavenworth lies at the base of the Cascade Mountains. Leavenworth is an especially fun destination in Washington because the entire town has adopted a Bavarian Theme. Visitors to Leavenworth can enjoy the Bavarian homes, shops and even restaurants. Leavenworth is also a great destination for year-round recreation. The town is near to Lake Wenatchee, the Wenatchee National Forest and much more. It is a great rock-climbing spot, visitors can also try some ag-tourism to learn about the areas agriculture including berry farms and orchards. Leavenworth is also a great winter destination, the town has Bavarian themed holiday celebrations, and it is a great spot for cross-country skiing as well as many more winter activities. Visitors to Leavenworth may also want to take the short trip to nearby Cashmere, for a tour of the famous Aplets & Cotlets Factory and Country Store, where visitors can enjoy some of Washington's unique candy.

San Juan Islands
The San Juan Islands are an ideal northwest Washington vacation getaway. They are remote and filled with Washington's natural beauty. Located in the Salish Sea between Vancouver, BC and Seattle, there are over 700 islands, and less than 200 have names. Visitors will find that access to the islands is limited to ferry, private boat or plane, and only four of the islands are accessible by ferry. These four islands are Shaw Island, Lopez Island, Orcas Island and San Juan Island. Each of these four islands has unique character as well as unique geography. On the islands visitors can enjoy the extensive shoreline, wildlife and plenty of recreation. Visitors can enjoy biking, boating, camping and more. Each of these main islands also has a small town with unique shops, museums, local farms and the delightful local farmers markets. Whale watching is also a great activity that visitors to the island can enjoy.

Mount St. Helens
On May 18, 1980, Mount St. Helens erupted, sending ash all the way into eastern Washington and beyond. The eruption and a large earthquake caused the north face of the mountain to collapse and creating a devastation pyroclastic mud flow. The eruption lasted for nine hours. After the eruption, in 1982 the President and Congress created the Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument, which set aside 11,000 acres for research, education and recreation, and the environment was left to respond to the eruption naturally. Today visitors to the mountain can climb the mountain with a permit. Those visitors that climb the mountain can see the lava dome that was building, but which now appears to have stopped. Visitors to Mount St. Helens that want to climb the mountain should always check mountain conditions and warnings before going up as it is still an active volcano. Other features of the mountain include the Johnson Ridge Observatory, the Silver Lake Visitor Center and the Coldwater Lake Recreation Area, all of which are great places to learn about the history of the mountain, and seeing how the environment has responded to the eruption.

Bainbridge Island
Bainbridge Island is located in the Puget Sound, just an easy 35 minute ferry ride from Seattle. A day trip to Bainbridge is a great way to enjoy the culture of the Puget Sound while getting away from the city. Visitors first have to take the ferry ride from Seattle to the Island. Riding the ferry is a fun way to see great vistas of Bainbridge Island and Seattle, you may even be lucky enough to see some whales on the ridge during certain times of the year. Visitors to Bainbridge Island do not have to drive their car, as the main town of Winslow is a very short walk from the ferry. Winslow is full of cute shops and plenty of local arts and culture. Visitors to Bainbridge Island will also find some excellent dining options. If you decide to drive on the ferry there are many more fun things to do on the Island. During the summer there are many nice beaches that visitors can have picnics and swim in the cold water. Bainbridge also has some very nice parks worth visiting including Fort Ward State Park on the south end of the island and Battle Point State Park, which has a nice walk and duck ponds.

Methow Valley
The Methow Valley is a particularly stunning part of the North Cascades and it is a great destination for recreation. The Methow Valley extends from the town of Mazama to the town of Pateros, with Twisp and Winthrop inbetween. Visitors to the Methow Valley will find that Lake Chelan, the Okanogan National Forest and the Lake Chelan National Recreation Area are nearby. At the northern end of the valley is the town of Mazama which is just 30 miles from the Canadian border. Pateros is located at the southern end of the valley and is nestled in a curve of the Columbia River. Visitors will find all sorts of recreation and fun throughout the area. In Chelan visitors can try some great Washington wines. One of the longest cross-country  ski trails in the world passes through Mazama, Cross-country skiers will love this 120 mile trail. Twisp, located at the confluence of the the Twisp and Methow Rivers is a great spot to enjoy some river rafting. The area is also a good spot to enjoy wilderness trips, golfing, hot air ballooning, hiking, biking, camping, nature watching, rock climbing, a variety of water sports and even winter sports.

Dry Falls State Park
As you may have guessed from the name, the Dry Falls no longer carry water. In fact, these amazing falls are the remnant of what was once the largest waterfall know to have existed on Earth. Visitors to the Dry Falls will see the 3.5 miles of sheer cliffs that drop 400 feet, which is a little over twice the drop of Niagara Falls. The Dry Falls were created by the collapse of one of the ice dams that held back the waters of the Glacial Lake Missoula. The flood that followed eventually created the Dry Falls. Visitors to Sun Lakes-Dry Falls State Park can learn all about the geological process that created these amazing falls at the Interpretive Center located in Sun Lake State Park in Coulee City. At the foot of the Dry Falls visitors will find over 73,000 feet of freshwater shoreline. Visitors to this area might also want to stop and enjoy some of the areas many lakes, as well as the Grand Coulee Dam and Coulee City.

Dungeness Spit

The Dungeness Spit is the longest natural sand spit in the country, the spit extends five miles into the Strait of Juan de Fuca and it grows about 15 feet each year. The Dungeness Spit  is located just north of the town of Sequim and it is encompassed in the Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge. The refuge has over 200 species of birds as well as many species of marine animals. The refuge is over 600 acres and is open daily from dawn to dusk, but access is limited to horseback or foot. Visitors may wan to take the hike out to see the New Dungeness Lighthouse, the lighthouse is located near the tip of Sandy Hook and has a great little museum. Also near the spit is the Dungeness Recreation Area, which has over 200 acres of shoreline which is a great destination for all types of marine recreation. Visitors to this area won't want to miss a stop in Sequim. This town has a great downtown area, and be sure not to miss breakfast or lunch at the amazing Oak Table Cafe. The Olympic Game Farm is also a great destination. Visitors will find a wide variety of animals during their drive through the farm, including zebras, bears, elk, buffalo and much more.

Washington | Fun and Funky Things to Do

Washington is a beautiful state, filled with natural wonders and interesting activities. If you happen to be a visitor to Washington and are looking for some places and attractions to visit that are a little out of the ordinary, here are a few ideas.

Wild Horse Monument
This delightful sculpture collection is located on the east side of the Columbia River near the town of Vantage in Central Washington. The large sculptures were made by local artist David Govedare. Drivers on Interstate 90 can see the large silhouettes on the hill above. If there is enough time, drivers should stop to see the sculptures up close. When exploring the monument, visitors can see that the sculptures are made from welded steel plates and that no two of the sculptures are alike.

Fremont Troll
Visitors to Seattle should take the time to to explore this amazing sculpture located under the Aurora Bridge. The Fremont Troll peers to the south from underneath the bridge. Visitors to Seattle have been enjoying the unique sculpture since 1990. The head and shoulders of the troll stand 18 feet tall. Visitors and residents alike love to climb onto the troll to pose for unique Seattle photos.

Grand Coulee Dam Laser Light Show
The Grand Coulee Dam features a laser light show daily. Visitors can best see the free light show from the parking lot. The laser light show is displayed on the face of dam, with the water cascading down. Throughout the show there are fun laser light formations, with music and the show is narrated by the Columbia River brought to life.

Ye Olde Curiosity Shop
Located on the downtown Seattle waterfront, the Ye Olde Curiosity Shop is a must see destination for all visitors to Seattle. The shop is filled to the brim with amazing and quirky curios. These curios are displayed throughout the store, some even hang from the ceiling. Visitors come away from the shop with unique souvenirs of Seattle. Be sure to keep an eye out for the shop's resident Mummies.

Mima Mounds Natural Area
In the south Puget Sound, visitors to Washington can stop and visit one of the country's natural  curiosities. Each mound is six to eight feet tall, these mounds are spread across the over 600 acres of the preserve. Visitors to the Mima Mounds Natural Area can walk along the interpretive trail to really see the repetitive pattern of the mounds. There is also an observation deck where visitors can see the mounds from above. There are many theories about the origins of the mounds.

Search Campgrounds and RV Parks in Virginia

Search for Campgrounds and RV parks in Virginia

Virginia Camping Quick Facts

Uniquely Virginia: Site of the surrender that ended the American Revolution
Must-See: Monticello, historic home of Thomas Jefferson
Most Unusual: The wild ponies on Assateague Island
Highest Point: Mt. Rogers, 5,729 feet
Food to Try: Brunswick Stew

What to Do in Virginia:

1 Visit Yorktown the city where Cornwallis surrendered and ended the American Revolution

2 Explore Assateague and Chincoteague Islands

3 Take a ghost tour in Richmond

4 Hike in the Blue Ridge Mountains

5 Learn about Virginia's geology while exploring the Luray Caverns

Off The Beaten Path | Virginia

The Commonwealth of Virginia is a beautiful state on the Atlantic Coast. Visitors can enjoy history, outdoor adventure, romantic getaways and much more. The Chesapeake Bay and the Blue Ridge Mountains shape the state and create habitat for the wide range of plants and animals in the state, and create an amazing place to enjoy adventure and excitement.

Chincoteague and Assateague Islands
Chincoteague National Wildlife Refuge on Assateague Island located in Virginia and Maryland, is a bird watchers paradise. It was established in 1943 as a refuge for birds, primarily snow geese, but it is home to many species of birds and wildlife and is also home to the famous Chincoteague Ponies. Chincoteague Island is a beautiful resort spot. In addition to being close to the wildlife refuge, the island has many of its own charms. Visitors can enjoy their vacation exploring the beaches, marshes and forests of the wildlife refuge or exploring the local shops on Chincoteague Island. Scenic Chincoteague has many opportunities to hike, bike and boat, you can also go crabbing or claming. The town also offers pony rides on real Chincoteague Ponies.

Monticello, Charlottesville
Located on a mountaintop outside of Charlottesville, Monticello is an amazing place to learn about the history of our nation. Monticello was the home built by Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States. Visitors can now take tours of the personal home of one of the countries greatest historical figures. Tours include the first floor of the home, located on the 5000 acre estate, as well as tours that focus on different aspects of the plantation's history. Monticello is the only historic house in the United States on the United Nations' World Heritage List.

Shenandoah National Park
Shenandoah National Park is 105 miles long, and it stretches from Front Royal to Waynesboro-Charlottesville. The Skyline Drive, the scenic drive through the park, is a fabulous way to enjoy the beautiful park. Shenandoah's visitor centers have plenty of fascinating exhibits, and the park has plenty of hiking opportunities. There are over 500 miles of trails, and much of the parks 196000 acres are open to back-country camping, nature viewing and more. Old Rag Mountain is also in Shenandoah National park, which happens to be a very popular, challenging and dangerous hike, great for the more adventurous hikers.

Warm Springs, Bath County
Warm Springs is a great location in Virginia to enjoy some relaxation. Visitors can find the very nice mineral waters in the village of Warm Springs on the western part of the state. The mineral waters are great for relaxation and are said to have healing qualities. The mineral waters can be enjoyed at the 19th century bathhouses. When visitors are not spending time at the bathhouses they can enjoy the delights of the village itself, including antiques, art galleries, crafts, the Bath County Historical Society Museum, live music and much more.

Tangier Island
Located in Chesapeake Bay, the tiny island of Tangier is an excellent spot to enjoy some of Virginia's history. Visitors to the island can tour an bike or by Tangier taxis, which are golf carts used to tour the island. Some locals give tours of the island, which is a great way for visitors to learn about the island's history and present and enjoy the accent unique to the island. Visitors can also take nature tours which allows locals to explore crab pots and crab farms of the islands community.

This town is filled with significant Civil War battlefields. Visitors can go to Chatham, which is the only house in America that was visited by both George Washington and Abraham Lincoln. Chatham is widely known for the role it played during the Civil War, when it was both a headquarters for the Union Army and a hospital. Visitors to Fredericksburg can visit four battlefields at the Fredericksburg/Sportsylvania National Military Park, which includes Fredericksburg, Chancellorsville, and The Wilderness and Sportsylvania Court House.

Theater lovers will enjoy a visit to Staunton. The replica of Shakespeare's 17th century indoor theater, called Blackfriars Playhouse is an excellent location to enjoy the works of Shakespeare. Stauton is an old railroad town  and the birthplace of President Woodrow Wilson.

Virginia | Fun and Funky Things to Do

Virginia is a beautiful state, and it has many great attractions. Some of these attractions are very unique. If you are looking to enjoy some quirky and fun attractions during your trip to Virginia, here are a few great destinations to consider.

Drug Enforcement Administration Museum, Arlington
Located on the ground floor of the DEA headquarters. The museum contains a wide range of drug related artifacts, these artifacts represent all different time periods. Throughout the museum there are exhibits that illustrate different periods in time and culture. The DEA has much more that could be in a museum, however, many of these artifacts and photos are too shocking to be presented in a museum that gets such a wide range of visitors.

Dinosaur Kingdom, Natural Bridge
The Dinosaur Kingdom share its location with Professor Cline's Haunted Monster Museum. Visitors to Dinosaur Kingdom, will see the life-sized, hand crafted, fiberglass dinosaurs. Along the path through Dinosaur Kingdom, the large dinosaurs in combat with Union soldiers during the Civil War. Visitors to Dinosaur Kingdom can learn all about the story that brings together Dinosaurs and Civil War soldiers.

George Washington Masonic National Memorial, Alexandria
This memorial is a unique commemoration for both George Washington and the Freemasons. The ten story memorial was built by the Freemasons, and was built to resemble the Ancient 7 Wonders lighthouse at Alexandria, Egypt. The George Washington Masonic National Memorial is also museum, with replicas and artifacts from important American leaders and Freemasons.

Shenandoah Caverns
These interesting caverns are a great way to explore the underground and see the amazing formations. These caverns actually have elevator service into the caverns. Along the one-mile long trail there are all sorts of crystalline formations and large rooms.

Natural Bridge
The Natural Bridge in Virginia is a truly amazing sight. It is a naturally formed rock bridge. This bridge has a long history for America. It is included in Native American tradition, as well as involvement in the history of founding fathers like George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. Visitors to the Natural Bridge can also visit the Natural Bridge Caverns. These caverns descend 34 stories into the ground, and have some amazing features such as the Colossal Dome, a dome shaped natural feature.

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