Seattle to Portland: The Peninsula and Beyond
Posted in Multi Regional
The Olympic Peninsula offers visitors a fascinating insight into glacial America. From the peaks of the Olympic Mountains, glacier fed rivers filled with salmon and steelhead, to the only rain forest lined with moss grown trees and miles of unique hiking opportunities, a pacific Northwest vacation with education, wonder and excitement awaits you. Anchored by Vancouver and the Columbia River to the South and the glass blowing traditions of Tacoma to the North, we invite you to the land between Seattle and Portland: to the Peninsula and beyond.
Welcome to Tacoma
“Where Art and Nature Meet”
Settle into the first night of your adventure in southwest Washington with accommodation at Hotel Murano in Tacoma.
Located in the heart of downtown, the hotel features the masterpieces of 45 internationally-acclaimed glass artists on display in the hotel’s guest tower and public spaces. World-class art and dedication to providing guests with top-notch service are a couple of the many reasons why Hotel Murano was voted 17th best hotel in the United States by readers of the Condé Nast Traveler. Enjoy a succulent dinner at BITE Restaurant on the hotel’s 4th floor before turning in for the evening.
You’ll begin your day with a walk across Dale Chihuly’s Bridge of Glass. A partnership between the Museum of Glass, legendary glass artist Dale Chihuly and the City of Tacoma, the Bridge of Glass spans 500 feet, linking the museum to downtown Tacoma and its cultural corridor. Chihuly, a Tacoma native, is largely credited with influencing the “Studio Glass” movement as it developed around the world.
Spend the morning exploring the Museum of Glass, also inspired by Dale Chihuly. Witness art coming alive at the museum as you watch professional artists create works of art from molten glass in the museum’s hot shop.
Enjoy lunch at the Harmon Brewery, decorated to look and feel like a mountain lodge. There you’ll find a sampling of northwest food and Harmon’s five flagship ales along with several seasonal ales to quench your thirst.
After lunch, a quick walk will bring you to the Tacoma Glassblowing Studio, where you will put your new found glass art knowledge to the test as you create your own glass art souvenir. Your instructor will help you experience the magic of hot glass during your three-hour class.
Day Two (Alternate)
If you love golfing, Chambers Bay Golf Course is a must play. The host course for the 2015 US Open, Chambers Bay is Washington State’s golf masterpiece – a unique tribute to the historic links of Scotland and Ireland. With Puget Sound providing a serene backdrop to Chambers Bay, this breathtaking layout winds through a stunning coastal setting, among windswept dunes and native fescue grasses. The snow-capped Olympic Mountains rim the western shore and eagles keep silent watch overhead. In every sense, architect Robert Trent Jones II has created an awe-inspiring design that is as spectacular as the beauty surrounding it.
After a busy day of either glassblowing or golfing, you’ll be ready to return to Hotel Murano, plug your iPod into the docking station, select a pillow size from the menu and snuggle into bed for a relaxing slumber.
Travelling from Tacoma affords the opportunity to take a leisurely drive through the Kitsap Peninsula before reaching the banana belt of Washington State, Sequim, on the Olympic Peninsula.
Sequim is the lavender capital of the world and we have some great Lavender Farms that will make you feel you are in the Provence region of France, with a full tour when the farms are in bloom (May – September). During the summer, the city is awash with the scent and color of this fragrant popular plant. The mineral rich soil in the Sequim Dungeness valley boasts some of the best organic and dairy farming. With less than 22 inches of annual rainfall, the blue hole of the Pacific Northwest is proud to claim over 300 days of sunshine per year.
The Olympic Peninsula has a lot of tribal tradition and this will be a main feature of your visit. On your first afternoon, you will be taken on a totem tour of the Jamestown S’Klallam tribe and learn the stories behind this wonderful artwork. Your evening meal will be taken at Seven Cedars Casino, owned by the tribe. The Jamestown S’Klallam Tribal Center in Blyn brings their history to life and stories of their fishing and canoeing skills are very evident.
Your home for the next two nights will be the new Holiday Inn Express & Conference Center. Built to encourage sustainable tourism, it has 42 solar voltaic panels, providing 17% of the hotels overall lighting needs. Relax and enjoy the view of the Sequim Dungeness Valley on the hotel’s unique rooftop garden before sleeping in the feature suite. To provide a resort feel to the hotel, the long awaited Black Bear Diner welcomes you with a footbridge over the water features joining the two together. Like its sister hotel in Sequim, the Quality Inn & Suites, coach tour guests are welcomed as family with a personal greeting on the bus and accessible parking is always available. Take time out to enjoy the large fitness room with feature windows providing views of the valley and overlooking the indoor pool.
After a hot buffet breakfast at the hotel, you will enjoy a Water Limousine cruise out to Protection Island, a nature reserve that humans are forbidden to set foot on. This restriction has led to a major growth in migrant birds as well as plentiful marine life. Your tour will also take you out to the Dungeness Spit and Lighthouse and save you the 11 mile round trip hike. Enjoy a packed lunch at the lighthouse,
before returning to John Wayne marina with Captain Charles.
An alternative trip will be to the Olympic Game Farm, where you can learn how the founder Lloyd Beebe trained and filmed the live animals in the golden days of Disney movies. Lloyd’s grandson, Bob Beebe, revived the tradition and began training the new generation of wild animals last year. The sets from some of the movies as well as Gentle Ben are still visible today, while filming for a new family movie is due to start in the Spring of 2012.
Your afternoon trip will take you to Hurricane Ridge at an elevation of 5200 feet. Incredible views of the Olympic Mountains to the South and Canada to the North will greet you. Take a docent led hike and see unique plant life to the area as well as wildlife as well as understanding what makes the area unique for this vegetation. Snow shoes will be available for the tour if required. The Hurricane Ridge road is open all year round due to the partnership of the Olympic National Park Service and the local tourism partners, providing opportunities for original winter and mystery tours.
Return to the Holiday Inn Express in Sequim for a second night and enjoy a dinner at the Black Bear Diner. This restaurant supplies the hotel’s conference center. A tour group would enjoy an entertainment filled night at the hotel in their own private room.
Day Four (Alternate)
If you love golfing, enjoy 36 holes at the areas two golf courses. Cedars at Dungeness offers a links style par 72 course which features the 500+ yards par 5 hole 3. Ole Crabby, a bunker shaped like a Dungeness crab will await your approach to the green. This is a challenging but fun course. Your second round will take place at Sunland, a private residential course that offers tight fairways lined with bunkers and houses. This is a picturesque and demanding course that provides a long day for golfing enthusiasts.
Your journey continues to the City of Long Beach and the western beaches at the Southwest tip of the Olympic Peninsula. You will travel along Highway 101, past Port Angeles, still unofficially the countries second city as no President has overturned Lincoln’s executive order made during the civil war, which made Port Angeles the nation’s capital in the event of Washington falling. As such, the city boasts the Washington State liberty bell rather than Olympia, the State’s capital.
Your journey will take you past Forks, land of Bella and Edward made famous in the Twilight movie series. Take a drive up the Bogachiel River and visit the Hoh Rain Forest. This unique area sees 154 inches of rainfall annually and contains some fascinating plant life, unique to the area as well as the famous Hall of Mosses hike. Carrying down along the highway, you’ll marvel at the scenery until you reach your destination. Take time out to stroll along the beaches at any of the stop off points if you need to stretch your legs.
Welcome to Long Beach Peninsula, WA
Best of the Ocean and the Bay: Discovery Awaits
Check into the Adrift Hotel & Spa overlooking the mighty Pacific Ocean. Adrift offers something for everyone, couples, groups, individuals, professionals and families alike. From deluxe ocean-view rooms to bunk bed suites and kitchenettes, we provide freshly renovated spaces furnished with a combination of new, reclaimed, and repurposed materials to create a modern, laidback environment.
Breakfast at Bensons by the Beach is a great way to start your day. This family owned restaurant is sure to please your group with sunroom seating for large groups and yummy taste-tantalizing breakfast and lunches.
After breakfast take a drive to nearby Oysterville where, for generations prior to the arrival of the pioneers, Chinook Indians gathered oysters in this part of Willapa Bay. In 1854 Robert Hamilton Espy and Isaac Alonzo Clark arrived and established Oysterville and a lusty boomtown began. Enjoy a 4-hour walking tour of Oysterville with your guide Harmony Geimer, a distinguished docent who has travelled around the United States with groups from around the globe.
During your visit to Oysterville you’ll enjoy the culinary delights of Beach House catering providing you a packaged luncheon. Teri Dodson will tickle your taste-buds with a taste of the Peninsula.
After lunch you’ll take a trip to the Cranberry Museum and learn how this immensely popular berry has been cultivated since 1880 to the present day. You’ll stroll through the cranberry farm and research unit and even experience harvesting if you choose to visit in October.
What is a kite? The answers may surprise you as you take a trip back in time to the World Kite Museum and Hall of Fame. This is the only museum dedicated to kites in the western hemisphere. Enjoy a tour of the museum and a complimentary copy of the book titled ‘The Kite That Built A Bridge’, by Marjorie Cochrane.
Nothing beats waking up to the smell of the ocean air and fresh coffee and the sound of crashing waves. Let your senses be your guide as you enter the Cottage Bakery in Downtown Long Beach. Originally opening as the Pacific bakery in 1908, the bakery changed its name in 1974 when Bob and Judi Andrew took over the operation.
After breakfast head south to Ilwaco, WA, home to the Columbia Pacific Heritage Museum. Explore the crossroads of history where the Columbia River meets the Pacific Ocean. Discover the land of the Canoe People, Mariners, Explorers & settlers, Fishing, Logging and Cranberry Festivals and Life in a Coastal Fishing Village on the Columbia River estuary.
After your exploration get your camera ready as you travel to the Lewis & Clark Interpretive Center and journey back in time with the two famous explorers. Learn more about the Graveyard of the Pacific and view the breathtaking sites of the majestic Columbia River, where it meets the Pacific Ocean.
Enjoy a stroll along the Harbor of Ilwaco, taking in the sights and sounds of this working fishing village.
Thank you for allowing us to share our community and the treasure we have here with you. We look forward to welcoming your groups in the future.
Welcome to Vancouver USA!
Explore Your Options In Columbia River Country
Check into your urban rustic retreat, The Heathman Lodge. Your well-appointed room boasts the rustic charm of a mountain lodge but is enhanced by modern amenities and urban conveniences.
Start your adventure in the heart of Vancouver, located just 10 minutes West of The Heathman Lodge. Both Downtown Vancouver and Uptown Village feature a plethora of antique shops to explore as well as wonderful clothing boutiques and art galleries featuring local artists.
If you work up an appetite, Main Street’s newest Bakery, the Bleu Door Bakery, features decadent carrot cake filled with lemon curd and Kailua sticky buns. Bleu Door is owned and operated by the local vintners of Gouger Cellars (who’s tasting room in also located downtown).
Across the street from Esther Short Park, which is the heart and soul of downtown Vancouver, Grays at the Park will welcome you for dinner where you can enjoy the ambiance of this Steakhouse and Bistro.
It’s now time to catch a show at Cinetopia, Vancouver’s premier theater. Relax in the overstuffed leather chairs and have the on-site sommelier select the right bottle of Washington wine to match your Artisan Cheese Plate which will be delivered to your theater seat.
After your evening of fine dining and entertainment, retreat to The Heathman Lodge, just minutes from Cinetopia Westfield location, for a restful night sleep.
Start your day with a hearty breakfast at Hudson’s Bar & Grill, located on-site at The Heathman Lodge. Hudson’s offers seasonal fare focusing on northwest flavors. Some favorites are the Crab Cake Benedict and the Bread Pudding French Toast.
Spend the morning exploring Vancouver’s history. Start at the re-constructed Fort Vancouver National Historic Site, which was established as headquarters for the Hudson Bay Company. On this self-guided tour you can experience life as the Oregon Trail immigrants, natives, and soldiers did back in the 1800’s. Spend a few minutes in the Fort garden that still produces food for the community from the same heirloom plants.
Next stop is the Pearson Air Museum, which is located at the nation’s oldest continually operating airfield. At Pearson you will immerse yourself in aviation history. See the World’s first bomber, experience flight in the Flight Simulator, or watch an aviation movie in the theater.
End your tour with a stroll on Officers Row, a beautiful tree-lined street with 22 exquisitely preserved Victorian homes on the National Historic Register. Have an early lunch at The Grant House, built in 1849 and named after Ulysses S. Grant who was stationed at Fort Vancouver.
Next up, enjoy the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area. Start your loop tour by heading east on Hwy 14, and then south on I-205 into Oregon and taking I-84 west along the Columbia River. Stop off at Multnomah Falls, and discover why it is one of the most photographed places on the west coast. Continue east to Cascade Locks where you will cross over the Bridge of the Gods. Once across the bridge head just a few miles east into Skamania County with a visit to the Columbia Gorge Interpretive Center to learn more about the river’s history and influence on the region.
As you head west on your return to Vancouver down Hwy 14, and if time allows, be sure to stop at Beacon Rock, an enormous basalt monolith that jets up 800 feet from the river’s edge. It may seem daunting to attempt to climb the rock, however you will be rewarded with breathtaking views that only you and the osprey and eagles will share.
Your next stop will be Main Street in Camas, featuring many boutiques, antique shops, cafes, and the elegantly restored Camas Hotel. Enjoy dinner at Oliver’s, Camas Hotel’s very own chic restaurant, which artfully presents modern American cuisine using local, regional, and seasonal ingredients.
After dinner enjoy the leisurely drive back to The Heathman Lodge for another restful evening.
Breakfast awaits at Hudson’s Bar & Grill before you start your morning drive up to Mt. St. Helens National Volcanic Monument. Located north of Vancouver, and a couple of hours of drive time, it is an attraction like none other. Ever since the earth-rattling eruption over 20 years ago, the mountain has kept us all enthralled with her natural beauty, devastating strength, and remarkable ability to foster rebirth. The Forest Learning Center at the base of the mountain is a great spot to watch powerful film footage that shows the forest trees floating away in a molten river like matchsticks. The eruption chamber engages your senses by duplicating the eruption and quaking earth so that you can experience it first-hand.
At the top, The Johnston Ridge Observatory is in the heart of the blast zone and offers stunning views of the still-steaming lava dome, crater, pumice plain, and landslide. It is named after the volcanologist David Johnston, who was camped observing the volcano when it blew. His final words as he scrambled for his radio were “Vancouver, Vancouver, this is it!”
Lunching at Fire Mountain Grill at the Hoffstad Bluffs is the perfect ending to a day on the mountain. The Grill, which has a full menu including buffalo and elk burgers also, has breathtaking views of Mount St. Helens and the Toutle River Valley.
After lunch, you’ll start your journey back to SeaTac at the end of your trip. We know that you’ll have a wonderful experience and look forward to you using this template for future tours as a base for your clients to see what a wonderful location the Pacific Northwest can be.
We look forward to welcoming you back to Vancouver, WA.
This tour package has been produced by the following partners:
Wirta Hospitality Worldwide
Holiday Inn Express & Conference Center Sequim / Quality Inn & Suites Sequim
1441 E Washington Street | Sequim, WA 98382
direct 360.681.8756 | Cell 360.775.8630
firstname.lastname@example.org | www.hiesequim.com www.sqis.net www.exploreolympics.com
The tour itinerary includes all accommodations and meals as specified, though gratuities and alcohol are not included (unless stated).