Destinations

Fort Worden State Park

Mother/Daughter Road Trip Spring Break 2018

Two nights and one full day at this magical place is simply not enough time! I wouldn’t call the constant precipitation sideways rain as much as a pummeling mist. Pacific Northwesterners know what I’m talking about. Unfortunately, due to weather and time restrictions, we didn’t see half of what was available so have made plans to come back during the summer and we’ll bring the entire family!

Pros:

  • Historic – plenty of learning opportunities for kids and adults alike. There are few places in Washington with a history as long and rich as Port Townsend, which is older than Seattle and Tacoma and retains much of its original charm.
  • Great walking trails.
  • Lodging in the Officer’s Quarters is a unique and fun experience.
  • Breathtaking views of the Strait of Juan de Fuca, Mt. Baker and Whidbey Island.
  • The Port Townsend Marine Science Center is worth checking out.
  • There are several on-site food options.
  • Convenience store next to beach sites.
  • Conference center.
  • Camping bathroom and laundry facilities are top-notch.
  • Cell service is great and you can even get a decent TV signal from Seattle.

Cons:

  • I suggest checking in after you’ve unhitched your large trailer or RV at your reserved campsite, or have your sidekick jump out and check in for you to avoid pulling into that parking area with a big rig. Check-in is in the Commons – through Fort Worden’s main gate, straight through the first stop sign (Eisenhower Ave) and take the first right down the alley. When cars are parked along the right side it is not conducive for large RVs. I just don’t think it’s worth getting into a turning predicament.

Must do:

  • Walk, gallop or run through the artillery batteries. It’s a unique and memorable experience. Take flashlights (even in the day) for ultimate exploring.
  • Take a trip into downtown Port Townsend to walk around, grab a cup of coffee and visit one of the many bookstores. This town is seriously adorable.
  • Immerse yourself in the history of the area and the “Triangle of Fire.”

Good to know:

  • We stayed in site #3 on the beach. It was not private, but spacious. There is no view of the water from the ground because a high dune sits between the water and road, but it was still great. We drove up to the forest campsites and found them less private and more cramped than even the beach sites. I prefer the beach sites which are also within walking distance to the beach, lighthouse, Battery Kinzie, Maritime Museum and the small store.
  • Getting to the Peninsula from the Everett/Seattle/Tacoma corridor takes a little forethought. Traveling via ferry is the most common and fastest route, but also the most expensive. For our 28′ trailer and tow vehicle (we were priced at 50′) was $85 one way and $75 for the return. You can drive across the Tacoma Narrows Bridge, but it will add over an hour drive time to/from Seattle (in good traffic) and is also a toll bridge. I wrote a post on my first ferry experience, you can find it here.
  • Pets allowed.
  • You need a Discover Pass, which can be purchased in the Commons building.
  • Reservations: Washington State Parks
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Fort Worden site #3

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