Stroll along the deserted beaches along the Pacific Ocean, hike through rugged and inhospitable mountain ranges, walk through countless acres of beautiful forests and enjoy the vibrant cities such as Seattle and Portland. You do it all during a Pacific Northwest vacation in the United States. In the ‘upper left corner’ of the country, bordering Canada, this area offers all the ingredients for a great and adventurous holiday.
A Pacific Northwest vacation surprises with its versatility. Mountains, forests, vast plains and even a piece of tropical rainforest. The states of Oregon and Washington are often an unexpected surprise even for experienced American visitors. Especially for the active and enterprising holidaymaker, this region is a perfect piece of America to explore extensively. Explore the Pacific Northwest!
Climate in Pacific Northwest
According to growtheology, Washington is the northernmost state and is located between British Columbia (Canada) and Oregon. Most of it has a temperate Mediterranean climate with fairly dry summers, wetter winters and moderate temperatures throughout the year.
The northwest of Washington state has a temperate maritime climate that changes into a warm maritime climate. Washington is one of the wettest states in the United States, with the largest amounts measured in the Cascade Mountains. Oregon has a mix of Mediterranean and continental climate types, with dry summers and relatively wet winters. That makes summer the best time for a Pacific Northwest vacation.
Meet the locals
When you go on vacation through the Pacific Northwest you know one thing for sure: you’ll feel right at home! The people of Oregon and Washington are not only very hospitable, but they are also extremely humble. In our opinion unjustified because this region has so much to offer that you expect them to shout it from the rooftops!
From the sprawling vineyards of Oregon to the jagged Cascade Mountains of Washington, you’ll find locals eager to show you what makes their region so unique. The same applies to the inhabitants of the metropolises of Seattle and Portland. They provide the relaxed atmosphere of a small town, which in some neighborhoods even feels like a village.
Natural Areas in Pacific Northwest
During your Pacific Northwest holiday, as a traveler you will find adventure wherever you want. On land or in the water, both Oregon and Washington are packed with action. Oregon is perhaps the crowning glory, because in that state you will find overwhelming nature in the superlative.
For example, the state has the deepest canyon in America with Hells Canyon, Crater Lake can call itself the deepest lake in the country and Mount Hood – in addition to being a popular ski resort – is also a potentially active volcano. Even during a ride along the Oregon coast and the Oregon dunes you look your eyes
Hell’s Canyon gorge
Hells Canyon is a 10 mile wide canyon on the border of Oregon, Washington and Idaho. At 7,993 feet, the canyon is the deepest river canyon in America and even deeper than the Grand Canyon in Arizona. Here you can make a spectacular jet boat trip over the swirling river through the Canyon.
Crater Lake is the most famous crater lake in the world. The lake is located in Oregon and was created about 7700 years ago during a very heavy volcanic eruption. When the weather is clear on your Pacific Northwest holiday, it is wonderful to behold this blue lake.
Mount Hood volcano
Mount Hood is one of the region’s two major stratovolcanoes. The volcano is 3429 meters high and the highest place in Oregon. When you travel through Oregon you often see this volcano in the background. On the south flank of this volcano is the Timberline lodge, a hotel built in 1935, which was used for the filming of the movie ‘The Shining’ with Jack Nicholson.
Yet ‘upper neighbor’ Washington is not much inferior. This state is divided by the Cascade Mountains into a particularly fertile and wooded coastal area and on the other hand a dry interior with imposing desert landscapes. The Cascade Mountains form the most jagged mountain landscape in America. Something that is also evident from the names of the mountain peaks of North Cascades National Park, such as Desolation Peak, Mount Despair and Mount Terror.
Tall, jagged mountains with ice peaks is what you’ll see a lot on your Pacific Northwest vacation. Moreover, you will find hundreds of glaciers here, more than half of all glaciers in America! In the lower areas you will find alpine meadows, canyons, rivers and spectacular waterfalls. There you will also find Highway 20, the ‘most scenic mountain drive in Washington’. An ideal area for cycling, walking, horse riding or water sports. In short, everyone will enjoy themselves during a Pacific Northwest vacation!
Vineyards and beer breweries
A holiday in the Pacific Northwest cannot be without good food and drink. Fortunately, there is no shortage of that either. Wine lovers will get their money’s worth at the many vineyards spread throughout the region. Combine a tour with a delicious tasting and get ‘the best of both worlds’.
Portland, Oregon, has more beer breweries than any other city for true beer fans! And when it comes to good food, the region offers you more variety than you can eat during your holiday. From the Dungeness Crab in Seattle to the steaks and burgers in the backwoods.
City trip Pacific Northwest
Make time for a few days of ‘city break’ in Seattle or Portland on a Pacific Northwest vacation . Both cities exude a wonderfully relaxed atmosphere and are green due to the many parks. Portland has been voted one of America’s top cycling cities and the city enjoys a growing reputation as a culinary center.
You can also choose to book a fly drive Seattle . You start your vacation in Seattle and then continue your vacation through the Pacific Northwest. In Seattle, stroll along the waterfront through the backdrop of Sleepless in Seattle. For an overwhelming view of the city and the water, visit the Space Needle with its revolving restaurant.
You can also go shopping in both cities, of course. Oregon doesn’t even charge sales tax, so shopping cheaply there is very easy.
Go on the road
A Pacific Northwest vacation is best done by car or RV. You can really go in any direction and decide for yourself what you want to see and do. Do take your time to enjoy the breathtaking nature and relaxed cities.