Home to over 157 miles of coastline (excluding all the inlets, bays, and lagoons), Washington State has a great number of beautiful coastal beaches waiting to be discovered. In addition, there are also a number of freshwater beaches along the shores of Lake Washington, all of which provide areas for outdoor relaxation and entertainment.
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Located in West Seattle, Alki Beach is where the first white settlers set foot on Washington State soil in 1851. Today, the beach is a great community recreational area with a long beach strip stretching from Alki Point to Duwamish Head. Alongside the beach there is a great 2.5-mile pathway that is perfect for walking all year round and very popular with joggers, roller-bladders, and cyclists. The beach has good amenities, including parking, picnic tables, a bath house, and restrooms. The entire beach offers excellent views of Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains as well as the never-ending parade of boats, ferries, and yachts.
Alki Beach, 1702 Alki Ave SW, Seattle, WA 98116
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The coastal town of Seabrook, and lovely Seabrook Beach, is located in Pacific Beach close to Olympic National Park. You can look forward to exploring a long and broad stretch of sandy beach that is great for all kinds of beach activities, including sandcastle building, sun-tanning, kite flying, dog walking, and picnicking. The beach offers the perfect spot for long sunset walks followed by supper at one of the restaurants in town. You can rent a bicycle in town and explore on two wheels. When you need a break from the beach you can go for a scenic drive in Olympic National Park.
Seabrook Beach, 4275 SR 109, Pacific Beach, WA 98571
3.Cape Disappointment State Park
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Do not let the name put you off – a visit to Cape Disappointment State Park, located in southern Washington and northern Oregon, is a deeply rewarding experience for all nature lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. Besides being home to several historic landmarks, the park is a wonderful place for a back-to-nature vacation, featuring three long stretches of beach (two miles in total), an interpretive center, and many options for camping and cabin rentals. There are a number of hiking trails and excellent birdwatching areas. Waikiki Beach is one of the prettiest beaches in the park and is perfect for sunbathing, swimming, sandcastle building, and walking.
Cape Disappointment State Park, 244 Robert Gray Dr, Ilwaco, WA 98624-9165
4.Damon Point Spit
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Damon Point Spit is a nice protected area of sandy beach located close to public parking near Ocean Shores on the southern Washington coastline. The beach is great for walking and scavenging, as large amounts of driftwood wash up along this section of the shore. Although swimming is not recommended due to strong rip currents, children can have a lot of fun building sandcastles and collecting a variety of interesting shells and smaller pieces of driftwood. Many people come to the beach to enjoy hiking the 4-mile Damon Point Trail, and there is excellent birdwatching, particularly in winter when snowy owls are regularly spotted.
Damon Point Spit, Point Brown Rd, Ocean Shores, WA 98569
5.Denny Blaine Park
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Denny Blaine Park is located along the shores of Lake Washington and is one of Seattle’s best-kept beach secrets. The quiet park is arranged on three levels – the upper two are grassed and perfect for sunbathing or a laidback picnic. The lower level of the park is sandy and adjoins the rocky lake shore. In the summer you can swim in the lake or simply bring a float and relax on the water. It might be important to mention that this is a clothing-optional beach and you will often see partially or completely naked people here; if nudity is offensive to you, it would be wise to choose another beach.
Denny Blaine Park, 200 Lake Washington Blvd E, Seattle, WA 98112
6.Fort Flagner North Beach
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Located on an elevated bluff at the tip of Marrowstone Island, Fort Flagner State Park offers wonderful views out over Puget Sound. The 2-mile section of shore known as North Beach is covered in interesting driftwood and makes the ideal place to take long romantic walks. The park offers a good variety of seaside activities, including crabbing and clamming, swimming and saltwater fishing. In addition, there are two boat ramps and several moorings. Other popular activities on the beach include kite flying and paragliding. For a break from the beach activities you can go on a guided tour of Fort Flagner, which includes historic gun emplacements and a military hospital. The park offers a variety of camping and other accommodation options.
Fort Flagner North Beach, Marrowstone Island, Hood Canal & Eastern Olympic Peninsula, WA 98358
7.Fort Worden Beach
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Forming part of the Fort Worden State Park, Fort Worden Beach is a picturesque 2-mile stretch of beach featuring elevated bluffs that offer sweeping views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca. There are plenty of beach activities to keep visitors occupied, including swimming and diving, crabbing and clamming as well as lots of mucking around in boats. You can bring your personal watercraft to the park, where you have the use of a 120-foot dock and two boat ramps. Kayak rentals are available and for those who like to keep their feet dry there are over 11 miles of hiking trails and 8 miles of cycling trails. No visit would be complete without touring the historic fort and its well-preserved surroundings.
Fort Worden Beach State Park, 200 Battery Way, Port Townsend, WA 98368
8.Golden Gardens Beach
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Located in Golden Gardens Park in Ballard, Seattle, Golden Gardens Beach is a lovely stretch of sandy beach with good facilities and plenty of parking (it can also be accessed by public transport). Many residents believe that this beach is the ideal place to watch the sunset and if you visit at that time, you will usually find many locals relaxing on the benches, walking along the beach, or playing beach volleyball. Other activities in the park include hiking along the forest trails and fishing off the pier. The park also has an off-leash area where your dog can run around.
Golden Gardens Beach, 8498 Seaview PI NW, Seattle, WA 98117
9.Ocean beaches near me: Half Moon Bay
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Half Moon Bay is located in Westhaven State Park, in Grays Harbor County near Westport. The crescent-shaped strip of sandy beach is separated from the open Pacific Ocean by the Westhaven Jetty, which can be accessed along a paved 1.3-mile path. The beautiful beach is backed by swaying grasses and gentle sand dunes and is popular with surfers. Other water-related activities include crabbing, clamming, and saltwater fishing. The beach is a great place to relax and soak up the sun or be a bit more energetic and do some beach combing or go for a run. Swimming is not advised due to strong currents and rip tides.
Half Moon Bay, 2700 Jetty Haul Rd, Westport, WA 98595
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You can find Hobuck Beach on the beautiful Pacific coastline of Neah Bay, just west of the Makah tribal reservation. The attractive stretch of beach offers visitors a variety of facilities, including camping and birdwatching as well as swimming and fishing. Hobuck Beach is a popular spot for surfing, and avid surfers can contact the National Buoy Data Center for all the information you need regarding surf conditions. You can also enjoy soaking up the sun or going for long beach walks as you watch a magnificent Pacific sunset. The beach regularly hosts a variety of events, including youth surf camps and the Hobuck Hoedown, a surf-paddling festival.
Hobuck Beach, 2726 Makah Passage, Neah Bay, WA 98357
11.Jetty Island Park
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Jetty Island Park is unique in that if offers a beautiful soft-sand beach and the luxury of sun-warmed shallow water perfect for children to play in. You can reach this little piece of beach paradise by hopping aboard a free ferry from the Everett Marina, and once you have arrived you will be in for a true treat. Besides offering lovely sand beaches, the island also boasts nature trails and guided nature and sea-life tours. Consistent wind patterns make the island a popular haunt of kite-surfers and wind surfers. You will need to bring in (and carry out) everything you need for a perfect day on the beach as there are no concessions or facilities in Jetty Island Park.
Jetty Island Park, Everett, WA 98201
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Located in Olympic National Park in the Pacific Northwest, La Push Second Beach is arguably one of the most scenic beaches in the state. From the car park you will need to take a short hike through the forest to reach the sandy beach, which has numerous lovely rock pools to explore at low tide. From the beach you will have wonderful views of numerous sea stacks and the Quillayute Needles, an offshore archipelago of islands this is an important wildlife refuge for numerous species of sea birds and mammals. You can take a 1.5-mile beach stroll south to Teahwhit Head or take a longer hike in adjoining Olympic National Park.
La Push Second Beach, 3002 Mt Angeles Rd, Port Angeles, WA 98362
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You will find scenic Long Beach on the southwest Washington coast. It's a broad sandy beach that is perfect for all kinds of beach activities including kite flying, walking, sunbathing, sandcastle building – don’t miss the SandSations castle building competition in July each year – horseback riding, and beach combing. There is an interpretive half-mile boardwalk trail to explore and cyclists can enjoy the Discovery Trail which stretches from Ilwaco, goes through Cape Disappointment State Park, and ends in Long Beach.
Long Beach, Southwest Washington, WA 98631
14.Madison Park Beach
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Madison Park Beach is a popular seasonal beach located on the shores of Lake Washington. The beach can be found south of the Evergreen Point Bridge and is a popular lakeside recreational area for Seattle locals. You can expect to find a wide grassy area that is perfect for sunbathing and relaxing. Closer to the water there is a narrow sandy beach area that leads you to the water. There is a lifeguard on duty in summer, and swimmers have the use of a swimming raft and diving boards. The park also has two tennis courts and a playground area for younger children.
Madison Park Beach, 1900 43rd Ave E, Seattle, WA 98112
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Located in North Beach County Park on the Eastern Olympic Peninsula near Port Townsend, North Beach is a popular outdoor recreational area. The beach stretches for about 3.5 miles along the beautiful Strait of Juan de Fuca, starting at Point Wilson in the east and ending at McCurdy Point in the west. Visitors can expect to find a small sheltered area and several picnic tables, and the beach is perfect for taking a scenic walk to the lighthouse. Although North Beach is a day use-only area, there are several campsites nearby in Fort Worden and Fort Townsend.
North Beach, N Beach Trail, Port Townsend, WA 98368
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Ocean Shores is a small seaside town on the Pacific coast of Washington State. The town is home to long stretches of Pacific coast beaches and a network in inland lagoons and waterways. The most popular beach in the area is North Jetty, from where you have great views across to Westport and Westhaven State Park. The beaches of Ocean Shores offer the full gamut of seaside fun, including boat rentals, kite flying, tide pooling, clamming and crabbing, sandcastle building, and long beach walks fanned by the Pacific breezes. There are loads of seafood restaurants and quaint stores and galleries, and you can rent a moped at Apollo Mopeds to explore the area.
17.Orcas Island Spring Bay
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Located in the San Juan Islands in Northern Puget Sound, Spring Bay is a hidden treasure that offers wonderful views of several offshore islands and a secluded sandy beach that is well off the tourist radar. You can expect to see plenty of wildlife, ranging from seals and birds to a variety of interesting marine life in the tidal pools. Spring Bay is a brilliant launching spot for kayaking around Orcas Island or simply relaxing surrounded by nature. If you enjoy hiking, you can set off along a network of trails in adjoining Obstruction Pass State Park. Spring Bay offers comfortable and secluded lodgings at the Spring Bay Inn.
Orcas Island Spring Bay, 464 Spring Bay Trail, Olga, WA 98279
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Owen Beach is one of the most popular beaches in the entire Seattle/Tacoma region and receives upwards of three million visitors each year. The beach is located on Puget Sound and is a great spot to relax and enjoy wonderful views out over the water to Mount Rainier. Visitors can look forward to discovering a nice sandy beach with good facilities, which include a concession, drinking water, toilets, and a picnic shelter that can be booked well in advance for outdoor celebrations. There is a long stretch of paved promenade running the length of the beach from the Point Defiance Boathouse, and kayak rentals are available during the summer.
Owen Beach, 5605 Owen Beach Rd, Tacoma, WA 98407
19.Point No Point
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Point No Point Beach stands under the watchful eye of the famous Point No Point Light in Hansville. The historic lighthouse is the oldest on Puget Sound and has been provided navigational aid to sailors since 1879. The surrounding beach is pristine, wild, and wonderful. The soft sand is perfect for sandcastle building and the beach is also a great place to go fly a kite, walk the dog, hunt for shells, and even fish for salmon. The views out over Puget Sound are brilliant, and if you would like to linger for a few days, you can book the holiday apartment at the lighthouse. Point No Point Lighthouse is open to the public daily during the summer.
Point No Point, 9009 NE Point No Point Rd, Hansville, WA 98340
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Point Roberts is an anomaly in that although it forms part of Washington State, it can only be accessed overland land by travelling through Canada. Located on the southern tip of the Tsawwassen Peninsula, Point Roberts offers a unique outdoor recreational playground for visitors who take the trouble to come and visit this remote and beautiful spot. The emphasis is on enjoying the bounty of nature along miles and miles of unspoiled beaches, where you can enjoy sailing, swimming, ocean kayaking, windsurfing, fishing, and whale watching – the point is regularly visited by orca whales. There are also great hiking trails for landlubbers to enjoy and plenty of wildlife to keep the most ardent spotters happy.
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Lodged between the towering trees and verdant undergrowth of the Mora area and the relentless pounding of the Pacific surf in Olympic National Park, Rialto Beach offers excellent views of Pacific sea stacks. Like many of the other Pacific coastal beaches, you will find enormous washed-up trees and plenty of smaller pieces of driftwood for collectors. The beach is quite remotely situated, which means that it offers a wonderful sense of tranquility. At low tide you can walk or jog all the way to the Hole-in-the-Wall, a beautiful sea arch carved by the relentless action of the waves. Rialto Beach is a great place to watch the sunset and explore the tidepools at low tide. There is a large campground at Mora, less than 3 miles from the beach.
Rialto Beach, Olympic National Park, WA 98362
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Located in the Kalaloch area of Olympic National Park, Ruby Beach overlooks the Olympic Coast National Marine Sanctuary, which protects all the islands along a 135-mile stretch of coastline. The islands are home to thousands of sea birds and marine mammals (including tufted puffins), and Ruby Beach is consequently very popular with wildlife enthusiasts. Popular activities at Kalaloch and Ruby Beach include tide pooling, wildlife watching, walking/jogging along long stretches of pristine beaches, hiking, and camping. For non-campers there is a lodge located directly on the beach that offers comfortable accommodation with wonderful beach access.
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Visiting Cama Beach, locatedthe Cama Beach State Park on Camano Island, is like stepping back in time. The beach is lined with a row of 1930s cabins and there is a general store and a camp-fire gathering point where vacationers meet to socialize and toast marshmallows. You can do as much or as little as you like on Cama Beach – simply relax and soak up some sun, have a swim, or find a good spot for some fishing. You can also enjoy boating, crabbing, diving, and birdwatching or set off along one of the trails for a pleasant hike. There are dedicated activities for children, and beach bingo and various other activities are hosted during summer.
Cama Beach, 1880 W. Camano Dr, Camano Island, WA 98282
24.Shi Shi Beach
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Shi Shi Beach is another of Olympic National Park’s treasures, but it requires a fairly strenuous hike in order to reach this remote and scenic wilderness that offers excellent views of several sea stacks. To visit you will need to follow the 2-mile Shi Shi Beach Access Trail (most of the route is quite flat, with the exception of a steep bluff at the beach end of the trail). The trail ends at the north end of Shi Shi Beach, where you can see a small group of sea stacks. The highlight of your visit to Shi Shi Beach is the 2.3-mile walk to Point of the Arches, a large grouping of very impressive sea stacks. Primitive camping is allowed all along the beach provided you carry in and carry out everything you need for a night under the stars.
Shi Shi Beach, Western Olympic Peninsula, WA 98362
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Located between Shi Shi Beach and Cape Flattery on the northwestern tip of the Western Olympic Peninsula, Sooes Beach is a remote and scenic wilderness you should not miss when visiting the region. Due to the remote location of the beach, there are seldom many visitors and you can spend hours of solitude exploring a wealth of tidepools containing sea urchins and starfish. Sooes Beach is also a wonderful spot to just relax and watch a spectacular sunset or take a long romantic walk. If you fancy staying for a few nights, you will find at least four campsites within a 30-mile radius.
Makah Bay, Western Olympic Peninsula, WA
25 Most Beautiful Washington Beaches
- Alki Beach, Photo: Courtesy of paulfell - Fotolia.com
- Seabrook Beach, Photo: Courtesy of goodween123 - Fotolia.com
- Cape Disappointment State Park, Photo: Courtesy of Eugene Kalenkovich - Fotolia.com
- Damon Point Spit, Photo: Courtesy of Gregory Johnston - Fotolia.com
- Denny Blaine Park, Photo: Courtesy of Nathan - Fotolia.com
- Fort Flagner North Beach, Photo: Courtesy of Galyna Andrushko - Fotolia.com
- Fort Worden Beach, Photo: Courtesy of Zack Frank - Fotolia.com
- Golden Gardens Beach, Photo: Courtesy of Tracie - Fotolia.com
- Ocean beaches near me: Half Moon Bay, Photo: Courtesy of Gianluca - Fotolia.com
- Hobuck Beach, Photo: Courtesy of nadyatess - Fotolia.com
- Jetty Island Park, Photo: Courtesy of Cliff - Fotolia.com
- La Push, Photo: Courtesy of ejnelson314 - Fotolia.com
- Long Beach, Photo: Courtesy of Jo Ann Snover - Fotolia.com
- Madison Park Beach, Photo: Courtesy of nutthaseth - Fotolia.com
- North Beach, Photo: Courtesy of rufar - Fotolia.com
- Ocean Shores, Photo: Courtesy of serena - Fotolia.com
- Orcas Island Spring Bay, Photo: Courtesy of goodween123 - Fotolia.com
- Owen Beach, Photo: Courtesy of Gloria Moeller - Fotolia.com
- Point No Point, Photo: Courtesy of Jay Wintermeyer - Fotolia.com
- Point Roberts, Photo: Courtesy of goodween123 - Fotolia.com
- Rialto Beach, Photo: Courtesy of viscontia - Fotolia.com
- Ruby Beach, Photo: Courtesy of Cliff - Fotolia.com
- Cama Beach, Photo: Courtesy of DmitriK - Fotolia.com
- Shi Shi Beach, Photo: Courtesy of Lijuan Guo - Fotolia.com
- Sooes Beach, Photo: Courtesy of Patricia - Fotolia.com
- Cover Photo: Courtesy of pabrady63 - Fotolia.com