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Washington State mapThe most western and northerly of the lower 48 states, Washington territory was visited by Spanish, American, and British explorers throughout the 1700's.

A century later, Washington's incredible store of natural resources -- found in lumber, salmon fishing, and fur-trapping -- attracted early settlers to the area to stake personal claims to the region's riches.

Today, the state still beckons visitors by the millions each year to a variety of tourist attractions beginning with Seattle offering a view of the city high atop the iconic Space Needle, and more attractions including the Pike Place Market and aquarium (see kid-friendly Seattle, below.)

Although still a major lumber producer, for nature lovers Washington continues to preserve millions of acres of national parks including those at Olympic National Park, Mount Rainier, and the North Cascades.

More spectacular scenic beauty awaits at the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area, boasting the 620-foot high Multnomah Falls.

washington state tourist attractions
Top Washington State attractions include the iconic Space Needle in Seattle (left); oceanside camping and
sightseeing at Olympic National Park (middle); and more natural beauty at Columbia River Gorge (right).

Kid-friendly Seattle

Besides the fun and excitement at Pike's Place Market, and a trip high atop the Space Needle the city is a virtual playground for kids of all ages.

Seattle attractions
Seattle Aquarium offers
close encounters with all
kinds of shore life.

Plan to spend at least a full afternoon at the Pacific Science Center guaranteed to offer something of interest for teens to toddlers — including hands-on exhibits, awesome dinosaurs, a sit inside the cockpit of a space shuttle, a huge screen IMAX theater, and even an outdoor play area.

For more outdoor family adventures, head over to the Woodland Park Zoo offering an enormous 92 acres devoted to animals living in either rain forest or coastal deserts displayed in state-of-the-art exhibits.

For a closer look at Seattle's shore life, also be sure to visit the Seattle Aquarium for eye-popping displays including a 120,000-gallon showcase Window on Washington Waters, as well as fascinating hands-on exhibits.

If traveling in the Fall, don't miss a trip to the Washington State Fair, in Puyallup offering bronco busting, roller coaster rides, and other family-friendly entertainment starting in mid-September.

also see -> Washington Beaches | Washington Campgrounds | WA State Fall Foliage

Washington State Wineries | Christmas in Washington State


More information about Washington State travel around the Web:

Washington State Tourism - A virtual tour to the entire state with 360º interactive gallery plus facts & information on cultural & historical attractions, Washington state birds & wildlife, must-see sights, event calendar, maps.

Washington Tourist - Your comprehensive guide to Washington State - Guides to major attractions including a look at Mt. St. Helens, the Lewis & Clark trail, festivals & events, a complete bed & breakfast directory, campground & RV park, state parks, and more.

Washington Attractions. Roadside America - Weird Washington captured in pictures & descriptions, i.e., the world's largest frying pan, the Pickled Pioneer grave site, Jake the Alligator Man, and lots more.

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