Port Townsend, WA

3 state parks in Port Townsend for Memorial weekend fun

Mary Jo Manzanares

Fort Worden State Park in Port TownsendPhoto by Andrew S on Unsplash

There are over 100 state parks in Washington State and with a sunny forecast for the upcoming Memorial Day weekend, there will be plenty of opportunity for some outdoor, socially distanced fun.

Washington State Parks require a Discover Pass for car access to state parks and recreational areas. The pass can be purchased online or at automated stations in many of the state parks.

The annual fee for the Discover Pass is $3, plus a $5 transaction fee, and is good for two vehicles. A day pass is $10, plus a $1.50 transaction fee, and is valid only on the date specified. Various free visit days are scheduled throughout the year.

If you do not require vehicle access, some state parks have free parking and you can walk or hike for your visit.

Here are three recommendations in Port Townsend:

Fort Townsend State Park

Fort Townsend State Park is a 367-acre park located towards the south of Port Townsend Bay on the Olympic Peninsula. Built in 1856, the park has a rich military history and was operated as a US army site until it was destroyed in a fire in 1895. The Fort Townsend state park occupies a part of the site of the actual fort. Only a part of the fort remains today, however, you can still visit it.

Recreational activities at Fort Townsend State Park include hiking and cycling trails, boating, fishing, camping, and crabbing. A self-guided nature trail and a trail highlighting historical events are located within the park. 

Location: 1370 Old Fort Townsend Road, Port Townsend

Hours: Fort Flagler State Park is open from 8 am till dusk during summer.

Fort Worden State Park

Fort Worden State Park is located in Port Townsend, Washington. The fort was constructed to protect Puget Sound from invasion by the sea and was designated as a National Historic Landmark in 1976. 

The 432-acre Fort Worden State Park opened in 1973 and is popular with visitors who enjoy its high bluffs and sandy beaches. The park houses the Puget Sound Coast Artillery Museum and the Point Wilson Lighthouse, both open to visitors.

Recreational activities at Fort Worden State Park include hiking trails, saltwater fishing, crabbing, water skiing, boating, diving, camping, picnicking, mountain biking, kayaking, bird-watching, and swimming. Foret Worden also has a conference and event center and you can book a stay in former officer quarters.

Location: 200 Battery Way, Port Townsend

Hours: Fort Worden State Park is open year-round for day use and overnight stays.

Additional Fees: The Coast Artillery Museum’s entrance cost is $4 for adults, $2 for children above five years, and $10 for the family package.

Anderson Lake State Park 

Anderson Lake State Park is a day-use public recreation area located south of Port Townsend on the Quimper Peninsula. The park spans 496 acres of woods and centers around the 70-acre Anderson Lake.

Recreational activities at Anderson Lake State Park include trails for hiking, biking, horse-riding, non-motorized boating, and fishing. The park has picnic tables installed along the Anderson Lakeshore, perfect for a day picnic. The lake offers seasonal lowland fishing of trout and other freshwater fish.

For the past few years, the lake has closed for access during the spring months due to toxic algae blooming issues in the water. It is advisable to check for lake closures before visiting the park.

Location: 1061 Anderson Lake Road, Chimacum (10 miles outside of Pt. Townsend)

Hours: During summer, the park is open from 8 am to dusk.

Also in The Area

In Nordland, a little further away from Pt. Townsend (about 16 miles) you'll also find Fort Flagler State Park, Mystery Bay State Park, and Kinney Point State Park.

In Brinnon, about 38 miles from Pt. Townsend, you'll find Dosewallips State Park, Pleasant Harbor State Park, and Triton Cove State Park

Get outside and enjoy the beauty of our Washington State Parks.


Comments / 4

Published by

We bring you information and recommendation you'll need to enjoy your time in the Evergreen State. Whether you’re a long-time resident or a visitor planning a vacation, this is where you’ll find practical information about making the most of your time here. From the cities of Seattle, Tacoma, and Spokane to the small towns that are often overlooked, we bring you the best of the Washington State.

Federal Way, WA

More from Mary Jo Manzanares

Comments / 0