Yesterday I told you about what took us up to Port Angeles and what our opinion of the town was. Today I’ll share some things which we really enjoyed seeing and doing along the Northern Washington coast line.
I’m more of an “off the beaten path” sort of traveler myself, preferring to ignore the “tourist traps” but enjoy what the locals enjoy. However, I absolutely could not resist the opportunity of going to the Olympic Game Farm while we were up in that area. (And besides that, I don’t know that I’d label this a “tourist trap” because it’s not your traditional tourist fare.) If you haven’t ever been to this game park, and are planning a trip up to Washington, I would strongly encourage you to add this place to your list of places to go! The history of the farm alone is perfectly fascinating and makes it worth the visit.
Most notable in the history of the park is the fact that the Walt Disney company has filmed many of their outdoors/nature films at this location. You can take a little tour of some of the old film sets and walk through a hallway peppered with Disney movie posters indicating which films were made here. Being a Walt Disney fan (of the man himself), I thought that was pretty cool.
One such film:
History of the park aside, we loved how “up close and personal” that you could get with the animals. We have been to other wildlife parks, but this one stood out to us as being less about fences and more about being close to the animals. Primarily this park features animals which are native to the area and that also makes it a “must see attraction” if you are visiting. As you enter into the park you can buy a loaf of bread and feed any zebras (not indigenous!), llamas or emu that approach the vehicle. We purchased a loaf and the husband was brave enough to feed a zebra or two. It was a curious fun thing to do with our kids.
- Roosevelt Elk
- American Bison
- American Black Bear (behind fences, thanks much!)
- Black-tailed Prairie Dogs
- Sika Deer
- Lots and lots and lots of rabbits!
Check out their website for more information regarding visiting hours and rules for driving through the park.
Another thing we wanted to do on this trip was travel Hwy 101 around the Washington coast and down into Oregon to return home. We traveled from Port Angeles, WA to Newport, Oregon via this famous coastal highway, and enjoyed several stops along the way.
The kids would have been greatly disappointed if we hadn’t made time for some sandy/rocky beaches, allowing them a chance to play. And hey, who are we kidding? We would have been disappointed if we had missed the opportunity to enjoy the beautiful landscape. We just love the Pacific Northwest coastline! Every bit of it is gorgeous to defy imagination.
We also made a stop to hike up and see the Cape Disappointment Lighthouse. This lighthouse was built in 1856 and is the oldest operating lighthouse in the Pacific Northwest. Gorgeous, romantic and stately, it is worth a little side trip to see. The hike up to the lighthouse is not that strenous. Our young folk were able to make the journey up without any problem and we noticed several elderly folk also making the journey. The view is most definitely worth it!
For those curious, Cape Disappointment received its name in 1778 from fur trader John Meares, who was looking for a river. When he decided that no river existed, he called the area Cape Disappointment. But trust us, the view is anything but disappointing!
All in all we greatly enjoyed our explorations along Hwy 101. Yes, it look us longer than 8 hours to get home but it was well worth the journey for the beauty we saw and the memories we made!
To state this more simply:
Adventure is worthwhile.