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  Great Washington Getaways Home  |  Washington’s North Coast
Photo: Scenic photo of north coast: Seiku, Washington.
The sun rises on another morning of salmon fishing in the small Strait of Juan de Fuca port of Sekiu. All of Washington’s north coast ports offer excellent summertime salmon fishing opportunities, camping, lodging, and a variety of other family activities. Photo by Linda Dillard, courtesy of Olson's Resort
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Local Attractions
  Port Angeles Chamber of Commerce
  Olympic National Park
  Clallam Bay-Sekiu Chamber of Commerce
  Neah Bay Chamber of Commerce
  Quileute Nation
  Forks Chamber of Commerce
  Hoh River Rain Forest
  North Coast ports offer an ocean of opportunity
Photo: Man holding 80 pound halibut caught from kayak.
Halibut fisheries are closely managed and monitored, resulting in fine north coast fishing for private boats, charters, and kayakers. This angler scored on an 80-pound halibut as well as a lingcod and cabezon fishing out of Neah Bay. Photo by Brad Hole
Throughout summer and fall, waves of Chinook and coho swim along the northern Washington coast on their journeys to river systems in British Columbia, Washington, Oregon, and California. Albacore tuna, lingcod, rockfish, surf perch and crab are also available right offshore. For families looking to do more than fish, the Olympic Peninsula offers some of the best wildlife viewing, hiking, camping and beachcombing on the West Coast.

Strait of Juan de Fuca

Port Angeles is Washington’s largest port on the Strait of Juan de Fuca and a regional center for charter fishing, dining, lodging, marinas and camping, proudly detailed by the Port Angeles Chamber of Commerce. It also stands as a gateway to popular vacation spots, including Olympic National Park, Forks, La Push, Sekiu, Neah Bay and – by ferry service –Vancouver Island.

In late July, August, and September, salmon flood into the strait, providing some of the best fishing of the year. But before those salmon enter the waters off of Port Angeles, they must first pass by Neah Bay and Sekiu.

The populations of the tiny port towns of Sekiu and Clallam Bay swell in mid-summer when crowds of anglers arrive to fish for salmon. Located about halfway between Port Angeles and Neah Bay, Sekiu is especially popular with owners of midsized boats seeking the relatively protected waters of the strait, which are at their calmest in summer.

Salmon and crab are abundant all summer, although it’s important to check the Fishing in Washington rule pamphlet for specific regulations and seasons. The little port offers accommodations, camping, marina services, fishing guides, and a few restaurants and shops. See the Clallam Bay-Sekiu Chamber of Commerce for more information.

Photo: Woman on boat holding salmon caught fishing the north coast of Washington.
The north coast provides some of the best salmon fishing in the state. Photo by John Long.

Rocky headlands, fishy waters, and werewolves

At the entrance to the strait sits Neah Bay, home to the Makah Tribe and some of the best scenery, hiking, beachcombing, surfing, boating, and fishing on the Olympic Peninsula. More salmon pass by Neah Bay than any other port on the state’s coast. Stocks from every major salmon stream stretching from British Columbia south to California swim past Neah Bay each year.

Private boat owners and charter fishing clients are drawn to Neah Bay for its short runs to good fishing and protected waters, as well as its abundant rockfish, lingcod, salmon and crab populations. Families enjoy Neah Bay for fishing, but also for the Makah Tribal Museum, Cape Flattery Trail, trails to Shi Shi and Hobuck Beaches, and beaches in Makah Bay. Neah Bay offers lodging, camping, dining, marine and fishing supplies, and fishing charters. For more information, see the Neah Bay Chamber of Commerce.

Just to the south at the mouth of the Quillayute River, home of the Quileute Nation, the tiny harbor of La Push offers on-the-water camping opportunities, secluded hike-in beaches, lodging, dining, and access to one of the most beautiful sections of Washington’s coastline.

Well known for halibut fishing, La Push is also a great place to catch salmon and observe native wildlife. Seals, sea lions, sea otters, river otters, porpoises, whales, eagles, loons, puffins, auklets, murres, and many other species are commonly seen on forest trails, beaches and in coastal waters. On the 15-minute drive between La Push and Forks, watch out for abundant Roosevelt elk, blacktail deer, and black bears crossing the road.

As advertised by the town’s Chamber of Commerce, Forks offers full services and is the outpost for visiting the west side of Olympic National Park, including the Hoh River Rain Forest. Like La Push, Forks has also become popular in recent years as the setting for the Twilight series. FYI: vampires live in Forks, werewolves in La Push.
Photo: Sea lion rookery
The region's rocky coastline is home to a wide variety of birds and marine mammals. This sea lion rookery off of La Push is home to hundreds of Stellar’s sea lions. Photo by Jeff Holmes