Visiting the United States? There are 50 states in all.
Washington is in the Pacific Northwest and is known as the “Evergreen State” because of its lush forests. The state’s largest city, Seattle, is called the “Emerald City” for much the same reason — frequent rainfall makes the area verdant. But Seattle is perhaps most famous for its striking skyline, its high-tech companies and its plentiful coffee shops.
Outdoorsy types can explore Washington’s national parks, which include beaches, lakes and (mostly dormant) volcanoes. And this coastal state is a seafood lover’s paradise.
Take a ferry to the islands dotting Washington’s Puget Sound — where you’ll find art galleries and whale-watching opportunities. Also, throughout the state, there are cultural centers devoted to the region’s American Indian tribes, whose history is recorded in totem-pole carvings.
Dizzying heights, massive trees
Olympic National Park, near Port Angeles, includes the Sol Duc Hot Springs and the giant conifers of the Hoh Rain Forest.
Emerald City hot spots
No trip to Seattle is complete without stopping by the Space Needle, which commands panoramic views of the city from its observation deck and its restaurant, which slowly rotates. The downtown waterfront features Pike Place Market, one of the oldest public farmers markets in the U.S.
Museums and more
Aviation fans can visit Seattle’s Museum of Flight — the largest air and space museum on the West Coast — and the Boeing factory in Everest, which offers a tour billed as the “Future of Flight.” In Tacoma, check out the LeMay America’s Car Museum, celebrating America’s love affair with the automobile, and the Museum of Glass, which displays international, contemporary art glass.
Seattle’s own glass-themed museum, Chihuly Garden and Glass, showcases renowned glass artist Dale Chihuly.
Spokane, a major Washington city that borders Idaho, is home to Manito Park and Botanical Gardens. The park’s five gardens — including the Nishinomiya Tsutakawa Japanese Garden — feature biking paths, playgrounds and a duck pond.
Snoqualmie Falls, an 82-meter waterfall near the town of Snoqualmie, is one of Washington state’s most popular scenic attractions. Set within a family- and pet-friendly park, the falls can be seen up close from the on-site observation deck.