By far the largest city on the Olympic Peninsula with 19,000 residents, Port Angeles, Wash., has the most hotels and restaurants of the park’s gateway towns. Home to one of the deepest harbors in the world, enjoy fresh seafood and daily ferry transportation to Victoria, British Columbia. (Remember to bring your passport.)
Port Angeles is just 17 miles from Hurricane Ridge in the park, which offers beautiful mountain hikes during the summer as well as peaceful snowshoe and ski trails in winter. Reaching 5,242 feet, the ridge offers incredible views on a clear day. Stop by the Hurricane Ridge Visitor Center for maps, snacks and tips on where to hike or ski.
If you have a chance to dine in Port Angeles before or after your park visit, be sure to order Dungeness crab, which is harvested by local fishermen. Then talk a stroll or bike ride on the Olympic Discovery Trail, a paved 130-mile multi-use path and road along the coast with Port Angeles as a midpoint.
Along the city pier, climb a staircase tower to see 360-degree scenic views, browse public art including a octopus made out of sea pebbles, learn about history at 12 murals on the Port Angeles Mural Trail and attend a summer event hosted by the Olympic Coast Discovery Center.
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