Whether you’re a city dweller or not, sometimes it’s important to get away from the hustle and bustle of life so that you can get some time to yourself. There are plenty of weekend getaway spots that can be found near Seattle, so it’s easy to take a break from the city without having to go too far.
Surrounding Seattle there is tons to do from outdoor weekend getaways to city getaways, so it’s worth doing your research to find the perfect getaway for you.
We’re excited to share our favorite Seattle weekend trips, but before we get too far, here are some tips for planning your weekend getaway.
First, decide where you want to go. This may seem obvious, but it’s important to do your research if you’re a first-timer to the area or someone who’s never been on a weekend getaway away from Seattle.
We’re making the research easy on you because we’ve arranged a list of the best weekend getaways from Seattle in order from the shortest commute from Seattle to the longest commute.
We want to make your time away from Emerald City the best it can be, so continue reading and see which weekend getaway is your favorite kind of vacation.
If you can plan to get out of the city before rush hour, your weekend getaway will be much more pleasant. Having to deal with rush hour traffic not only delays your trip but it adds a bit of unnecessary stress.
If you’re looking for a scenic option, then ferries are where it’s at. It’ll take some added commute time loading and unloading the ferry but being able to see the Seattle skyline from the Puget Sound is definitely worth it.
If you’re looking for a quick getaway, then a flight may be your best bet. Tons of airlines offer weekend flights, from Seattle. The bonus of taking a flight is you may be able to catch an evening flight before your weekend allowing you one extra night on your trip.
For us, we always love when we’re crossing a border because it means we’re going somewhere fun. But don’t let your lack of planning in crossing the Canadian border to go to Victoria, Vancouver or Whistler mess with your weekend getaway.
Make sure you have your passports and factor in the time it’ll take you to cross the border.
Crossing borders is always a great weekend getaway. It’s a fantastic feeling knowing that you’re driving away from home and into another country.
Some of these weekend getaways are good for visiting anytime, but others have specific seasons that make the trip more enjoyable. For example, I love going to Leavenworth anytime in the year, but for me, it’s really enjoyable in the winter.
Also, I’d prefer to visit the San Juan Islands during the summer when it’s a bit warmer, and we can hike and kayak in the sunshine- If you want the best weather destination, make sure to check out when it is prime season for that area.
Hotel rates may be more expensive if you’re planning to go to Leavenworth during Octoberfest or Christmas. If you’re going to Wenatchee during the Apple Blossom Festival, you may find it a bit difficult to find accommodations.
Once you’ve decided on a destination, be sure to check and see if there are any events that may interfere with your plans.
If you’re going with a significant other or friend, then it’s important to decide who is driving and what car will be used.
Now that you’ve got all the logistics down, it’s time to pack! Be sure to check the weather so you know what clothes to bring. You’ll want to pack some comfortable shoes, too because there are lots of shops, restaurants, and trails to explore in all of these areas.
We have arranged our weekend getaways from Seattle in shortest distance to the longest distance from Seattle. Enjoy and explore something new.
1 hour and 20 minutes (Ferry Involved) or 2-hour drive
Any time of the year!
Traveling to Whidbey Island from Seattle can be done by ferry or driving. For your weekend getaway, you can take a short ride on the Mukilteo ferry to the islands’ south side. The alternative option is to take the ferry from Port Townsend and arrives at Coupeville.
If you’d rather drive, you’ll have the opportunity to see and go over the famous Deception Pass Bridge, which connects the Island’s north side to Fidalgo Island and the mainland.
If you are looking for a weekend getaway from Seattle, Whidbey Island is one of the best places to escape. With only 2,400 people, it’s perfect for travelers who want to enjoy nature without feeling overwhelmed by crowds.
Whidbey Island is Washington’s largest Island, just north of Seattle, situated between the mainland and the Olympic Peninsula just north of Seattle.
Whidbey Island is a beautiful island with sweeping mountain views, open farmland, and several parks and beaches. Whidbey Island hikes are ideal all year round in every kind of weather! This makes for a wonderful day trip or weekend trip from Seattle.
There are plenty of quaint shops and fantastic places to get a bite to eat.
Coupeville, Greenbank, and Langley are a few suggested communities to visit for a unique flavor. The Oystercatcher in Coupeville promises some of the finest dinners on Puget Sound.
These lovely towns are filled with local gems, including apparel and accessories for both land and sea lovers.
1 hour and 25 minutes
Any time of the year- Especially if you’re looking for one of the best romantic weekend getaways from Seattle.
Suncadia resort is a straightforward drive that’s pretty easy. From Seattle: Drive east on I-90 for approximately 80 miles to the Roslyn/Salmon La Sac exit.
Suncadia Resort is a romantic getaway near Seattle that offers visitors an escape from the city. It’s a year-round getaway with a golf course, swimming pool, fitness center, and onsight winery. Suncadia Resort offers snowshoeing and tubing in the winter and hiking and biking in the summer.
The resort is set on 6,400 acres, 80 miles east of Seattle, Washington. Guests have the option between two fantastic restaurants and two bars while staying at the resort.
Pro Tip: If you’re a fan of the TV show Northern Exposure, head a couple of miles up the road to check out the town of Roslyn, where the show was filmed.
Pro Tip #2: If you feel like pampering yourself, don’t miss the Glade Spring day Spa. This is a great way to escape the city and give your body a bit of TLC.
1 hour and 36 minutes
Spring and Summer are the most popular. But there’s plenty to explore during the off-season. Sometimes visiting places during the non-touristy seasons is the best. So give it a shot and visit in Fall.
Anacortes, on Fidalgo Island, is located on a drive to Island, so there’s no ferry involved in this Seattle getaway. The ease of getting to Anacortes makes this a quick and easy day trip from Seattle or a longer Seattle weekend getaway for those looking to explore all that the area has to offer. Anacortes is the launching point for the San Juan Islands, and the international ferry runs up to Canada
The town is just north of Seattle by an hour and a half, and it has stunning views of the Cascade Mountains and the San Juan Islands.
Anacortes is a great getaway near Seattle. It’s home to some great outdoor activities like hiking and kayaking. The downtown area is quaint, making it an easy stop for food or shopping during your visit.
Anacortes is one of Washington’s most affordable getaway destinations, offering a variety of outdoor activities and the opportunity to explore some beautiful scenery.
There’s always something to do, regardless of the season. Whale viewing season begins in spring, as well as kayaking, stand-up paddleboarding, and boat excursions under Deception Pass Bridge. The annual Tulip Festival takes place during the Anacortes Spring Wine Festival when attendees can try 30 Washington wineries’ offerings.
Hike one of the Island’s many trails for a picnic lunch with a view of the islands, or explore the town’s history on a self-guided walking tour in winter. Winters are mild, making it ideal for hiking or sightseeing in town.
1 hour and 45 minutes
Any time of the year. For Seattleites looking for a winter escape from Seattle, head up to Mt Baker for some skiing. If you’re looking for a summer getaway, you’ll enjoy exploring the many different parks (Whatcom falls is my favorite) and the waterfront.
Bellingham, Wa, is 90 miles north of Seattle. Drive I-5 North towards Vancouver, Canada.
For a weekend adventure away from Seattle that doesn’t involve driving take the Amtrak train from Seattle to Bellingham for a fun adventure. Bellingham is a seaside city on the shores of Bellingham Bay and Lake Whatcom in Washington. It’s well known for its natural beauty and close proximity to the ocean.
Of course if taking the train isn’t your thing you can always drive.
Bellingham is a great place to escape the hustle and bustle of city life and makes for an easy weekend getaway that doesn’t require too much travel time or money.
There are several exciting things to do in this lovely and charming city, both on land and in the water. Bellingham has amazing state parks, vibrant shopping districts, exciting theaters, and fantastic breweries.
ProTip: Be sure to drive Chuckanut Scenic Byway on your way back to Seattle; it’s a beautiful drive that you’ll absolutely love.
2-3 Hours of travel depending on transportation; ferry from Seattle takes 2 hours and 20 minutes. Driving to Sequim will take 2 hours and 50 minutes.
Any time of year, visiting during the summer is beautiful, but if you’re looking to escape the Seattle rain, this is your perfect weekend getaway.
Take the Bainbridge Island ferry from downtown Seattle (35 min). Once you cross over to Bainbridge, You’ll also cruise through Poulsbo, which will take about 30 min. After Poulsbo, You’ll drive Highway 3 N to Highway 104 across the Hood Canal Bridge, then on to US 101 and Sequim.
Depending on how you choose to get to Sequim, the journey from Seattle may take as little as two or three hours. Set amongst the rugged Olympic mountains in Washington’s Olympic Peninsula, the lovely town of Sequim is about 65 miles west of Seattle. Sequim is close to the Strait of Juan de Fuca, with the Olympic mountains in the background.
If you’re looking for a place where you can escape from Seattle’s dreariness, The town of Sequim, Washington, is in the rain shadow of the Olympic Mountains.
This means that it can be cloudy in Seattle but sunny in Sequim. It’s also a great place to go for hiking and camping, so if you’re looking for somewhere to escape from your daily routine or want to take friends on a weekend getaway from Seattle, give this tiny little town some consideration!
You can make it an easy day trip from the Puget Sound area, but there’s so much to do here, you’ll want to stay for a few days or maybe even a week.
Pro Tip: If you’re a lavender lover don’t miss the Sequim Lavender fest. Sequim is known as North America’s capital of lavender and fans gather from all over the Northwest to see the stunning fragrant violet fields.
2 hours and 13 minutes
The best time to visit North Cascades National Park is from mid-June through mid-September.
Getting to North Cascades National Park from Seattle is easy. Head north on I-5 to Rte 530, then you’ll drive Rte 20 until you reach the park.
One of the best ways to get away from Seattle is visiting North Cascades National Park. North Cascades National Park, located in Washington state’s rugged northern part, is surprisingly underrated; especially for hikers, backpackers, and those searching for beautiful blue lakes.
The gorgeous roads and viewpoints provide a taste of the region’s beauty, but to fully comprehend the power of the North Cascades, you’ll need to hit the trails.
The remote beauty of North Cascades National Park is defined by jagged cliffs, deep forested valleys, cascading waterfalls, and more than 300 glaciers – surpassing any other national park outside Alaska.
Be sure to check out Diablo Lake Overlook its one of the most popular lakes in the area.
2 hours and 20 Minutes
Any time of the year, but we enjoy visiting Leavenworth during Christmas, Octoberfest, and the summer. (We love Leavenworth any time of the year.)
The best, fastest, and most scenic way from Seattle to Leavenworth is to go I-5 to Hwy 2. However, you need to check the weather of the mountain passes. An alternate route is to take I-90 to Blewett Pass.
Leavenworth is a Bavarian-themed town located two and a half hours from the city, making it an excellent weekend getaway from Seattle. The town of Leavenworth is bustling with Christmas activities in the winter, but during the summer, it’s a mecca for hiking, rafting, and biking. The downtown corridor of Leavenworth has shops, galleries, wineries, breweries, and plenty of places to get a bite to eat.
Don’t miss their famous Oktoberfest if you’re into festivals, where people can enjoy traditional German food, music, and entertainment.
If you’re looking for things to do in winter in Leavenworth, we have all sorts of ideas here. You can also find our favorite things to do in Leavenworth during Christmas here.
The snow-capped mountains and crisp air will refresh you, making you happy you took advantage of this jewel weekend getaway from Seattle.
Driving- 2 hours and 25 minutes. Ferry- approximately 3 hours
Summer is the busiest, and Fall and winter are the best times of year to avoid the crowds. If you’re hoping to catch the rainforest lush and alive, you’ll want to visit in spring after the area has received its rain.
Late spring-early summer is a great time to see views of the Olympic Range after some of the winter snow has melted.
The shortest route from Seattle to Olympic National Park requires taking a ferry. However, it may not be the fastest route.
From Seattle, take the Seattle-Bainbridge Island ferry. All ferries provide multiple crossings per day and take about 35 minutes. When comparing ferry times with driving times, remember considering the ferry schedule, boarding time, and sailing time. You can check the ferry schedule here.
After disembarking the ferry, it’ll take you 1 hour and 40 minutes to drive to Port Angeles. Once in Port Angles, it’ll take an additional 45 minutes to go to Hurricane Ridge, the park’s closest attraction.
There are alpine regions, rainforests, dry highlands, coastal beaches, and more in the Olympic National park. It’s a vast park that must be seen several times to appreciate all it has to offer. However, you do have to begin somewhere, don’t you?
For a one-day excursion, Hurricane Ridge, Sol Duc Falls, or a short walk in the Hoh Rain Forest are excellent choices. This is one of the longer weekend getaways from Seattle, but if you get up early and start your weekend early, I think you’ll be happy you did.
2 hours and 35 minutes
Depending on the season, I’d recommend two different ways to get to Wenatchee from Seattle. I suggest I-90 then 97 over Blewitt Pass into Wenatchee if it’s winter. If you want to come back a different route, then stay on Hwy 2 thru Leavenworth and back thru Stevens Pass. Always make sure to check the mountain passes for weather conditions.
Wenatchee is a city in Washington that is a great place to escape from Seattle. Wenatchee offers affordable staycations or weekend getaways with plenty of activities, including hiking, biking, kayaking, rafting, and fishing.
The area is known for apple orchards and wine! With over 12 wineries, there are enough wineries to keep you busy. For those looking to explore the natural beauty surrounding Wenatchee, do not miss out on hiking through the scenic Columbia River Gorge!
We’ve visited Wenatchee a handful of times and have been very impressed. This area has a charming downtown area, plenty of places to get a drink (breweries or wineries), and some fabulous wood fired pizza. Don’t miss going to McGlinns Public House for their pizza. Also, be sure to enjoy a nice walk along the Apple Capital Recreation Trail right along the river.
2 hours and 40 minutes
Summer and early Fall (July to September)
Mount Rainier National Park is located 81 miles from Seattle in west-central Washington state. Please note that parking at Paradise, Sunrise, Grove of the Patriarchs, and other trailhead locations between Longmire and Paradise can be difficult or impossible on weekends. Your best bet is to try and time your Seattle to Mount Rainier day trip on a weekday or as early in the morning as possible to avoid the crowds.
The park has five different entrances, and during the winter, several are closed. From Seattle, the Nisqually entrance is your best bet, 39000 WA-706, Ashford, WA 98304
Mt. Rainier National Park is home to the tallest mountain in Washington state and features a variety of outdoor activities, from hiking to camping. While it’s located nearly 3 hours away from Seattle, it still makes for a good day trip from Seattle if you get up early.
Mt. Rainier National Park is a popular destination for hikers, climbers, and those in search of adventure sports. The park has ample opportunity to explore the different trails that lead up the mountain and offers an array of activities like fishing or rock climbing to enjoy during your stay.
It is one of the state’s most popular attractions for visitors from Seattle because it has so many things to offer. With so much to do, you’ll never be bored or run out of things to explore.
3 Hours -Including Ferry ride (1 Hour Seaplane)
Victoria is great any time of the year. But I think the best time to visit is in July, August, or September.
Victoria is a straight shot north on I 5 to the U.S.-Canada border at the Peace Arch at Blaine and then to Vancouver on Highway 99.
Victoria Clipper: The Victoria Clipper is a passenger-only high-speed ferry that makes three daily round-trips (less in the off-season) between downtown Seattle and downtown Victoria. The ferry takes about three hours each way. Victoria is a very walkable city, so a car isn’t 100% necessary for a weekend trip from Seattle. www.clippervacations.com or 800-888-2535.
Washington state ferry: If you’re looking to adventure outside of Victoria, you’ll want to have a car. From Anacortes, Washington state ferries offer a vehicle/passenger boat twice a day to Sidney, B.C., about 20 minutes from downtown Victoria. You can make reservations 2 ½- to three-hour prior to sailing at www.wsdot.wa.gov/ferries or phone 888-808-797.
Victoria, British Columbia, is another one of Seattle’s most popular weekend getaways. Located on the southern tip of Vancouver Island, The ferry and passenger-only boat to Victoria takes about 3 hours each way. As a result, seaplane travel is the fastest and most scenic option for getting there in about 1 hour. Visiting Victoria will provide you with an unforgettable experience; it’s easy to explore, provides endless entertainment, and is the oldest city in the Pacific Northwest.
While visiting this charming city, you can enjoy strolls along the harbor, centuries-old historical sites, and a thriving arts and cultural scene.
In the summer, Victoria is a popular vacation spot with its many outdoor activities. Fisherman’s Wharf is the perfect place to spend an afternoon watching boats glide in and out of the harbor or seaplanes take off.
Victoria is the ideal year-round playground for outdoor adventure enthusiasts and a warm, welcoming, and multicultural city.
3 hours and 5 minutes
The best time to visit Vancouver is Spring and Fall.
Take I-5 North towards Vancouver BC.
Vancouver is a beautiful city located in British Columbia, Canada. It’s close to Seattle and offers many options for adventure!
In addition to the stunning natural beauty and scenic hiking trails, Vancouver is also home to some of the best restaurants in Canada. The city offers a wide range of cuisines, from Thai food to sushi, plus plenty more.
If you are looking for a weekend getaway, Vancouver is the perfect destination. You can enjoy nature while exploring the Capilano Suspension bridge, then enjoy a city stroll with plenty of shopping and dining options. Don’t miss seeing the Gastown area; it’s our favorite part of the city. There’s a bit of everything in this bustling Canadian city.
There are so many great islands to explore around the Seattle area. Some are day-trip-worthy, and some are perfect for a weekend getaway.
3 hours (ferry time included)
The city of Anacortes is the gateway to the San Juan Islands. If you are driving from downtown Seattle to reach Oras Island, Anacortes is the launching point for traveling via ferry to any of the San Juan Islands.
Driving Directions From Seattle: Take I 5 north to the Burlington exit, #230. Turn west (left) on Highway 20 until you reach Anacortes.
Once in downtown Anacortes, follow the signs (San Juan Island Ferries) to the ferry landing. Ride the ferry from Anacortes to Friday Harbor, San Juan Island.
An Orcas Island escape is a perfect weekend getaway for Seattle locals. The Island has a small population of about 1,100 people and is located off the coast of Washington. Its idyllic location provides visitors with an opportunity to relax in peace and quiet while enjoying the natural beauty that surrounds them.
Orcas Island is a popular destination for people looking to escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. It’s known as a place to enjoy the natural beauty that surrounds it with outdoor sports like hiking or kayaking while enjoying its famous sunsets over Puget Sound.
The top attractions on Orcas include hiking trails, waterfalls, wildlife watching opportunities, beaches, whale-watching cruises, and local restaurants.
3 hours 15 minutes (Ferry Included in travel)
The best time to visit the San Juan Islands is in July and August since it is the mildest, driest and sunniest period of the year. If you’re heading to San Juan Island to see the Orcas, the peak season for the Orcas is the summer months, Mid-June through Early September.
The city of Anacortes is the gateway to the San Juan Islands. If you are driving from downtown Seattle to reach Friday Harbor, Anacortes is the starting point for traveling via ferry to any of the San Juan Islands.
Driving Directions From Seattle: Take I5 north to the Burlington exit, #230. Turn west (left) on Highway 20 until you reach Anacortes.
Once in downtown Anacortes, follow the signs (San Juan Island Ferries) to the ferry landing. Ride the ferry from Anacortes to Friday Harbor, San Juan Island.
San Juan Island is a romantic weekend getaway from Seattle; it’s one of the best places to escape the city and rejuvenate your mind, body, and spirit. San Juan has some of the most beautiful scenery in all of Washington State with its spectacular sunsets, natural beauty, and rich culture.
There are many activities available like kayaking, hiking, or watching the Orcas that provide an escape from city life for those who want to get away from it all.
If you’re looking for a weekend trip that will take you back to nature but not too far from civilization, consider visiting San Juan Islands.
3 hours and 11 minutes
Any time of the year- Weather is very similar to Seattle
Getting to Portland from Seattle is straightforward; drive south on I-5 until you hit Portland.
Located in the Northwest, Portland, OR, is a unique place to get away from the Emerald City. Don’t expect Portland to be a sunny weekend getaway from Seattle because the weather is much the same as Seattle.
But the great thing is if you’re looking for a city vibe that’s a bit more laid back than Seattle, Portland is the perfect place to spend some time.
Portland is a foodie’s paradise that has plenty of good food and bars to go along with its diverse culture. Portland is the birthplace of food trucks, so don’t miss the food truck park.
If you’d like to enjoy the unique cities character, head over to the Pearl District, which has tons of shopping options and parks for relaxing.
3 hour and 26 minutes
The best time to visit Astoria is from June to September, as it is the mildest and driest of the year.
Take I-5 south until you get to towards Aberdeen/Port Angeles, then take Wa-8W towards Aberdeen. Wa-8 becomes US-12W, turn south on 101, which goes to Astoria.
Astoria is an adorable Oregon town at the mouth of the Columbia River, right across the river from Washington. Astoria is a great weekend getaway from Seattle if you’re looking for a place to chill out or to take in the local attractions.
Astoria has a 6-mile Riverwalk that takes you along the historic waterfront and is an ideal way to see some of Astoria’s charm. You can also climb the town’s largest column for spectacular views of the area. Astoria offers unique shops, great local restaurants, breweries, and spectacular views.
While in Astoria, make sure you stop at Buoy Brewing, where you can get a bite to eat and drink amazing craft beer while taking in the beautiful outdoor scenery.
Pro tip: Don’t miss the opportunity to peer down the glass floor and see Sea Lions in their natural habitat at Buoy Brewing.
4 hours and 10 minutes
Winthrop is a romantic getaway from Seattle for couples who want to escape the hustle of city life and enjoy the beauty of the outdoors.
With plenty of places to explore, Winthrop offers a vacation that brings out your inner adventurous spirit at any time during the year.
While the town may not be big, Winthrop boasts plenty of outdoor activities and a unique small-town atmosphere. Its location is great for anyone looking for a long weekend getaway from Seattle.
The drive from Seattle is spectacular, and there are many beautiful stops along the way to take in the sites.
Winthrop offers plenty of cross-country skiing and snowshoe trails in the winter. It’s not only a great place for skiers but also hikers and bikers who love getting away from the city. Winthrop has something for everyone, from exploring the charming downtown to hitting the trails.
4 hours and 30 minutes
Spring is the best time to visit because Summers can be brutally hot.
Follow I-90 out of Seattle towards the Columbia River, where you turn to cross over the river and turn off of 90 onto Highway 243 south. From there, take Highway 240 through the Hanford Site and on into the Tri-Cities. From the Tri-Cities, it’s only an hour to Walla Walla on Highway 12.
Walla Walla has something for everyone, from theaters and museums to cycling, hiking, golf, and relaxation time. It’s the ideal location to get into the great outdoors all year long since it is bathed in sunshine year-round.
If you’re a wine lover, you’ll be happy to know that Walla Walla is VERY well known for their wine. There are many wineries in town and also vineyards throughout the valley that you can tour end enjoy tastings at.
People come from all over the state to experience the Walla Walla wineries. If you’re looking for a getaway from Seattle in April or early May, this is your place. I recommend visiting Walla Walla during the spring because the summer months can get brutally hot.
If you’re not into the outdoors and are looking for something in downtown Walla Walla to keep you entertained. Check out local boutiques, art galleries, parks, and restaurants.
Now it’s your turn… We want to hear from you! What are some of your favorite weekend getaways from Seattle? Drop a comment below and let us know some of your favorites.
There are 172 islands and reefs within San Juan County (San Juan Islands). Some of these islands are super small and actually disappear during high tide. When it comes to tourism and seeing the San Juans, there are only four ferry-served islands, San Juan Island, Orcas Island, Lopez Island, and Shaw Island. These Islands are the most populous and host the vast majority of lodging and dining options and tourism activities.
If you’re lucky and have a plane, you can fly, and if you have your own boat, you can get a boat to the islands. If neither of these is an option for you, you can take a Seaplane from Kenmore air to the islands or a ferry. If you’re taking the ferry to the islands, you’ll depart from Anacortes, for to these islands to any of the islands will welcome you as a visitor. But if not, yes, you have to take a ferry. you’ll be taking a Washington State Ferry from Anacortes to the San Juan island of your choices
In my opinion, it really depends on what you are going for. I like Orcas Island a teeny tiny bit more because I enjoy the hikes in Moran State Park. I also think that Orcas Island has a little greener and more beautiful scenery, but they are both lovely and you will have a lot of fun on either island. The island of San Juan is the perfect starting point for a journey. The island has the most extensive tourism infrastructure and provides a variety of hotel choices in both Friday Harbor and Roche Harbor.
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