Visit Fort Worden State Park in Port Townsend
The Olympic Peninsula truly is a wonderful getaway destination, filled with an incredible range of things to see and do – and that includes visiting wonderful historic attractions like Fort Worden State Park. Fort Worden State Park is located in the charming town of Port Townsend, which is itself a historic destination. The town is filled with quaint Victorian architecture, plenty of antique shops, and a wealth of history.
In addition to being home to great attractions like Fort Worden State Park, Port Townsend is an extraordinary little seaport town with a vibrant arts community. The town is home to two different National Historic Landmark Districts, some truly amazing restaurants and shops, plenty of beaches and outdoor recreation to enjoy, and so much more.
This summer, why not visit us on the Olympic Peninsula, where you can leave the everyday stress behind and experience the quieter pace of life up here? We have no doubt you’ll fall in love with it here. And when you do, our incredible team of real estate agents will be right here, ready to help you take the next step in making this your forever home. Reach out to us today if we can help in any way.
Explore History at Fort Worden State Park
History buffs definitely don’t want to miss spending time in Port Townsend. Not only is the town itself filled with historic architecture, but it’s also home to a fascinating World War II military installation, Fort Worden State Park. Fort Worden State Park, nestled along a 2-mile stretch of shoreline in Port Townsend, was a strategic fort for the US military. It was constructed between 1898 and 1917, and at one time, this fort was home to up to 1,000 soldiers and officers, each training to defend the Puget Sound from potential invaders.
In concert with the other nearby forts of Fort Flagler and Fort Casey, Fort Worden State Park was part of the coastal defense system known as “The Triangle of Fire.” Here, you’ll find hidden gun emplacements, old bunkers, expansive parade lawns, and even well-restored Victorian-era officer’s quarters.
To get a comprehensive glimpse of Fort Worden State Park’s history, stop by the Friends of Fort Worden Gift Shop, and grab a map and enjoy a self-guided walking tour of the park. Here are some of the highlights of what you’ll see:
- Visit the Puget Sound Coast Artillery Museum, which is a great place to learn more about the harbor defenses of Puget Sound and how they operated from the late 1800s to the end of World War II.
- Explore the beautiful 1914 Point Wilson Lighthouse
- Hike along the 11+ miles of trails in the park, more than 2 of which are ADA accessible, or bike the more than 8 miles of trails throughout the park.
- Walk through the abandoned network of military bunkers and tunnels, imagining what being stationed here must have been like in the early 1900s.
- Tour the former Commanding Officer’s Quarters, restored and furnished in keeping with the late Victorian period (1890 – 1910). It’s a wonderful glimpse into what life must have been like for a military officer and his family.
More Things to do in Port Townsend
As great as Fort Worden State Park is, it’s really just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to great things to do in Port Townsend. Whether you’d rather browse the antique shops, explore the beautiful natural surroundings, or do something in between, there are more than enough things to do in Port Townsend to keep you busy. Here are our top recommendations for the very best things to do in Port Townsend:
- If you liked Fort Worden State Park, you wouldn’t want to miss nearby Fort Flagler State Park. Though it’s not technically in downtown Port Townsend, it’s not too far away on neighboring Marrowstone Island. The drive out there is beautiful, and the park is an exceptional place to explore and learn even more about the area’s rich military history.
- Another of our favorite things to do in Port Townsend is antiquing and exploring the broad range of galleries, shops, and restaurants in downtown Port Townsend.
- Watch a movie or other performance at the magnificent Rose Theatre. This treasured theatre is a historical gem and a treasured part of Port Townsend’s history.
- Visit Chetzemoka Park, which is the perfect place to enjoy the waterfront, and maybe even a small picnic.
- Explore the Jefferson Museum of Art & History and get to know about this incredible town.
- Stop into the Port Townsend Marine Science Center, home to one of 6 fully articulated orca whale skeletons. It’s impressive, as is the rest of the hands-on marine education.
- Visit the incredible Northwest Maritime Center, the host to the annual Wooden Boat Festival each September. It is a must for boating enthusiasts of all ages!
- Enjoy a day of tastings at local breweries, cideries, and wineries.
If, like us, you’re starting to find this area beyond incredible, then perhaps it’s time to reach out to one of our experienced Olympic Peninsula real estate agents? We’d be happy to answer any questions you may have about living or even just exploring the area.