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"the tall ships are coming.."

Things to do

The area has become a haven for retirees, mostly because of its dry climate, and its proximity to the Olympic National Park (fourth busiest in the system), unspoiled ocean beaches (about 90 miles away in the wet part), the historic Victorian city of Port Townsend, the Straits of Juan de Fuca, and the Canadian city of Victoria on Vancouver Island (15 miles to Port Angeles, and then a 90 minute ferry ride).  Port Townsend is also the arts center for the state, with almost continuous festivals in the Spring, Summer, and Fall.  Fort Worden is beautiful ("An Officer and a Gentleman", was being filmed there, during one of our first trips to Port Townsend), and houses Centrum, "Washington's home for the arts and creative education". 

You probably won't like it here if...

  • you live to shop.  The nearest major shopping center is in Silverdale, about 45 minutes away.  We just got our first Home Depot (smallish but nice), and the big box stores are on their way.
  • you're uncomfortable living in a community of older people.  Lots of retirees here.  However, folks don't come here to play shuffleboard and sit by the pool.  Our retirees are a very active group, and were mostly attracted by the outdoor activities or by the arts.
  • you like to go night-clubbing, and enjoy city life.  With the ferries, it's going to take a full two hours to actually be in downtown Seattle or Victoria.  Most locals "walk on" the ferries to either location; costs less, and eliminates the hassle on the return.  Port Townsend's festivals do bring really big name performers to the area, but the selection may not be to your liking. 
  • you yearn for the really warm days of summer and cutoffs.  It's pretty much coolish here year round.  We get some highs in the 80s, but the nights cool right back down again. 
  • you need the presence of a major university.  Peninsula College offers some really great community courses, but you won't find a major school this side of Seattle. 
  • you get impatient with slow traffic.  There isn't a stretch of interstate on the Peninsula.  Highway 101 is the major route, and at best it's four lane divided in a few places.  Tourist traffic in the summer can really slow things down.  The Peninsula is much like an island in that the one land route out is a significant distance to the South.
  • you need to live close to a major airport.  Port Angeles offers commuter flights to Boeing Field.  Driving is really not that much longer (2 hours) but it can make a long trip into a two day affair.

Major Events

There are so many, I'm sure I've left a few out.  Generally, there is a long list of activities going on all the time.  Some places to check:

Area Guides
Sequim Visitor's Guide
Olympic Peninsula Visitor's Guide
Port Angeles Visitor's Guide
also current events from:
Port Townsend Events: http://www.ptguide.com/calendar/
Port Townsend Galleries: http://www.ptguide.com/arts/gallery.html
Peninsula art events and organizations: http://northwindarts.org/links.htm
General guide to events: http://www.peninsulaevents.com/

Specific organizations and events:

Spring, Summer and Fall Centrum events: http://www.centrum.org/events.html
Fall, Winter and Spring: Olympic Theatre Arts: http://members.tripod.com/olympic-theatre/calendar.htm
March 17 - 20 Port Townsend 9th Annual Victorian Festival: http://www.victorianfestival.org/
April 16 Sequim Chocolate Festival: http://www.olympicchocolate.com/
May 7 - 14 Sequim Irrigation Festival (since 1896): http://www.irrigationfestival.com/events.html
May 14 - 21 Rhododendron Festival: http://www.ptguide.com/rhodyfest/
May 27-30 Juan de Fuca Festival of the Arts: http://www.juandefucafestival.com/index.shtml
June 24 - 25 Master Gardener Home Tour: http://sequimarts.org/garden/
Late June - early July: Tall ships events, starting in Victoria, Port Angeles, Port Townsend & Tacoma http://www.tallshipstacoma.com/index02.html
July 15- 17 2005 Sequim Lavender Fest: http://www.lavenderfestival.com/
July 24 - 25 Port Angeles Arts in Action (sandcastle competition): http://www.artsinaction.us/
July 28-31 Centrum's Jazz Port Townsend: http://www.centrum.org/events/jazz.html
August 5 & 6 Centrum's Port Townsend Blues & Heritage Festival: http://www.centrum.org/events/blues.html
September 23 - 25 Port Townsend Film Festival: http://www.ptfilmfest.com/
September 9 - 11 Port Townsend Wooden Boat Festival: http://www.woodenboat.org/festival/index.htm
October 8-9 Dungeness Crab & Seafood Festival: http://www.crabfestival.org/
All October - Art Port Townsend: http://www.northwindarts.org/artpt.htm
 

Arts Information

Northwind Arts Center - Port Townsend
Sequim Arts
Clallam Art League - Port Angeles
 

Other Sequim Links

Dungeness Recreation Area is a beautiful twenty minute walk from our property.  While we're not golfers, we are located on the 14th tee of the Dungeness Golf Course.

Amazing photographs by Ross Hamilton of Sequim.  Ross really captures the gorgeous scenery of the North Olympic Peninsula.

Read a little about Dungeness history here, including some excerpts from George Vancouver's 1792 logbook, when he named Dungeness after a harbor in England. 

Visit the helpful links below to plan your trip.


Ferries
Victoria Express - Passenger Ferry
Coho Ferry - Passenger and Auto Ferry
Washington State Ferries

Olympic National Park
Olympic National Park Field Guide
Olympic National Park (Official)
Olympic National Forest
Olympic National Park
daytrip around the park.  Be sure to view a number of the pages. 
Olympic National Park (Forest Service Link)
Field Guide to Olympic National Park

 A page briefly describing the Discovery Trail.  The page includes additional links to interesting places.

Recreation in the Area
Jardin du Soleil
Purple Haze Lavender Farm
Guide to Birdwatching
Sequim Lavender Festival
Olympic Game Farm
Olympic Mountaineering
Olympic Raft and Kayak
Olympic Van Tours
Sol Duc Hot Springs

How's the fishing up there?

The Olympic Peninsula is surrounded by saltwater on three sides. In addition, there are many streams and rivers coming out of the Olympic Mountains, and coursing over the Valley, as they run to the Strait of Juan de Fuca. Our native freshwater fish include rainbow, cutthroat, and brook trout, whitefish, and Beardslee trout (known only to exist in Lake Crescent!). Fish which use both fresh and saltwater are anadromous fish. We have all five species of Pacific salmon (Chinook, Coho, Chum, Sockeye, and Pink) plus Steelhead, sea-run cutthroat trout, and sea-run dolly varden.

Recreational harvesters and divers can enjoy the clams, oysters, crabs, scallops, shrimp, and abalone which thrive in our tidal waters.

Out in the Strait and in the ocean, among the salmon, killer (Orca) whales, dolphins, and seals, we have Pacific Ocean perch, petrale, Dover and English sole, lingcod, true cod, halibut, flounder, herring, surf perch, many types of rock fish, hake, dogfish, skate, ratfish, and more. We also have octopus, sea urchins, sea cucumbers, and the largest variety of starfish found anywhere in the world!

Fishing can be enjoyed from private or charter boats in the Strait, Bays and Ocean; from river banks or drift boats; from boats in Lake Crescent; or from the ocean beaches, with a stout surf fishing rod.

 

 

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