Out here, on the wet and wild side of Washington State, you can be exploring the natural beauty of Grays Harbor in just minutes. From stunning stretches of wilderness coastline, to incredible walks in the rainforest, and the local parks and beaches in between, the greater Grays Harbor region is home to dozens of destinations that would make the rest of the world envious.

grays harbor tourismScattered around the region, dozens of breathtaking and soul nourishing locations are waiting for your next weekend excursion. Whether you are looking for an amazing picnic spot at a rainforest lake or want to get out and hike, these seven destinations will inspire both you and your children to go outside and get back in touch with the awesome power of the great outdoors.

Quinault Rainforest Nature Trail and Lake Quinault

quinault waterfall
Discover pretty waterfalls in the gorgeous forests of the Quinault. Photo credit: Douglas Scott.

Forty five minutes from Hoquaim, just off of Highway 101, the stunning Quinault Rainforest is waiting for your family adventure. Highlighted by the trails around the Lake Quinault Lodge, this is where you can see tall trees, magnificent waterfalls, stunning lake views and a gorgeous loop drive full of stops for adventure.

The two main hikes that need to be seen are the Quinault Rainforest Nature Trail and the Maple Glade Trail, each on opposite sides of Lake Quinault. These short, stunning family-friendly hikes will leave you in awe at the beauty of the rainforest, while keeping you close to amenities. To make a complete day of the Quinault, stop by the World’s Largest Spruce Tree, Merriman Falls and enjoy a picnic at July Creek.

Wynoochee Lake

wynoochee lake
Even on a cloudy day, Wynoochee Lake makes for the perfect family destination.

An hour and a half from Aberdeen, tucked away at the southern edge of the Olympic Mountains, Wynoochee Lake has been a family favorite destination for generations. Surrounded by gorgeous forests, awesome waterfalls and trails around a fantastic lake, Wynoochee offers remoteness in wilderness while still being close to civilization. Wynoochee Falls is probably the highlight, offering a short hike to a tumbling cascade and a great pool to dip in on a hot day. Those looking for more of a hike can take the trail up the side of the lake, getting far from the campground and into the woods. Wynoochee also is a fantastic spot to spend the night in the campground complete with yurts. If you want an amazing weekend in the wild, a stay at Wynoochee does the trick.

Lake Sylvia State Park

A half hour east of Aberdeen, just north of Montesano, Lake Sylvia State Park is an outstanding place to spend the day with the family. With five miles of trails, beach, swimming area and plenty of places to picnic, kids of all ages will find something enticing about this park. Hiking here is easy for all levels of hikers, leading through stunning forests, across covered bridges and next to the the lake. Fishing and boating opportunities are possible, letting your family experience both land and water. Those interested in camping can make this the perfect weekend destination for a staycation.

Westport Light State Park

quinault rainforest
Stand among giants in the Quinault Rainforest. Photo credit: Douglas Scott.

Out along the coast, just 30 short minutes from Hoquiam, the Westport Light State Park is an awesome place for a day of dune running, beach combing and wave jumping. Here, where eagles and seagulls fly overhead, the crashing waves create a soothing soundtrack for your family adventure. Exploring the coast is a surefire way to reconnect with nature and is fun for everyone. Bring along a kite, picnic lunch and your sense of wonder for the perfect day along the Washington Coast. Cap off a day of exploring by getting ice cream or taffy in Westport before watching the sunset and create a lifelong memory with your kids.

Oyhut Wildlife Recreation Area

Better known as Damon Point or Point Brown, the Oyhut Wildlife Recreation Area is an incredible place to walk along the sandy beaches at the tip of Ocean Shores. Offering a four mile loop hike along the beach, beach combing and wildlife watching are the main draws to the region. Out along this historic and gorgeous swath of land, eagles, seals and the occasional whale can be spotted. As dozens of shorebirds run along the wet sand, keep an eye out for agates, petrified wood and the rare Japanese Glass Float that might have washed up.

Griffiths-Priday Ocean State Park

ocean shores beach
You never know what you might find washed up at Damon Point in Ocean Shores. Photo credit: Douglas Scott.

Further up the coast, near the small town of Copalis, Griffiths-Priday Ocean State Park is a perfect place to spend a day. There is something incredible about exploring the beach where a river meets the ocean and this park is no exception. As the mighty Pacific expands out into the horizon, the beach at Griffiths-Priday is a coastal playground for all ages. While it may lack in sea stacks and tide pools, it does offer awesome exploration and a chance to see deer, sea otters, seals and eagles while wandering along the shore, beach combing rocks, shells and unique driftwood.


ruby beach
Out along the coast, catch a sunset at Ruby Beach and fall in love with the beauty of the Pacific Ocean. Photo credit: Douglas Scott.

Highlighted by sea stacks, tide pools and stunning beaches, Kalaloch has inspired countless imaginations since civilization first started in the region. Visited by tourists from around the world, this coastal dreamland is just an hour and fifteen minutes from Hoquiam. The highlights for many are the ranger led walks along the coast, the incredible Kalaloch Tree and the timeless beauty of the seat stacks at Ruby Beach. For families, a trip to Kalaloch is about as perfect as it gets, as the ease of access to the breathtaking destinations requires just a sort walk down from the bluffs. Cap off a trip here with a night or two at the lodge or campground and fall deeper in love with the majestic beauty of the Pacific Northwest.

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