Port Townsend, Washington
Located on the northeast corner of the Olympic Peninsula, Port Townsend was once a major seaport. During its heyday a number of ornate Victorian homes were built and a city center sprang up. But major shipping eventually moved to harbors at Seattle, Tacoma and elsewhere along the Puget Sound, and Port Townsend became a quieter town.
But those Victorian houses and charming downtown buildings survived and would become a draw for retirees, artists and weekend visitors from Seattle. Thanks to their preservation and restoration efforts, the Port Townsend Historic District was established, helping to make tourism one of the draws - the many nearby highlights of the Olympic Peninsula helped, too.
Lodging, restaurants, a lively arts scene and water-related activities that include fishing and whale watching draw numerous visitors today.
Water Street (O14A0360)
The Port Townsend Historic District, downtown, is home to a number of restaurants, galleries and shops.
View of the Historic District (O14A0373)
Washington Street parallels Water Street, but climbs a hill. From this vantage one gets nice views of the downtown historic district, the ferry terminal and Whidbey Island beyond. A historic bell tower and customs building can be found in the upper city, along with a number of well-maintained 19th century homes.
Ferry Terminal (O14A0380)
The Port Townsend ferry terminal connects drivers to Whidbey Island. The route can shave several miles off a highway trip between Port Townsend and Seattle.
Miss Rhody Walk of Fame (O14A0359)
Port Townsend hosts an annual Rhododendron Festival. Past Miss Rhody winners have been honored on a walk of fame in downtown Port Townsend.
While you're in the area, check out these sights:
- Fort Worden State Park, Port Townsend, Washington
- Eaglemount Rockeries, Port Townsend, Washington
- Burgers Landing, Port Hadlock, Washington