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Explore the Long Beach Peninsula

Check out the big waves Waikiki beach offers during the winter months. Photo credit: Visit Long Beach Peninsula

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The Long Beach Peninsula is located in the very southwest corner of Washington state and is an easy drive from Joint Base Lewis-McChord. The majority of people make plans to visit the Long Beach Peninsula during the warmer months, but truth be told, the peace offered in the quieter months is unmatched. During the off season there is still plenty to do and see, without having to fight the crowds. An additional bonus, the short-daylight days mean that the seafood is at its prime.

Once you've decided to book a trip next up is figuring out what to do. The most obvious reason to head to the coast is the beach. The peninsula offers seven official access points to the main stretch of beach. Waikiki Beach is a must see as visitors will have the opportunity to catch sight of some pretty incredible big waves. If you're in search of a pristine stretch of beach to walk along, the small towns of Tokeland and North Cove offer vast and quiet stretches of beach. If walking in the sand isn't your thing, but you still want to soak up the views, the Long Beach Boardwalk stretches for almost half a mile along the beach and offers panoramic views including glimpses of the North Head Lighthouse. 

If you're wanting to stay active in the area but skip the beach altogether, the eight and a half-mile Discovery Trail is the perfect place to walk or ride bikes. Sculptures and interpretive displays dot the trail and welcome bike riders, runners, walkers and skaters.

For history buffs, the peninsula offers historic sites that include the North Head and Cape Disappointment Lighthouses. Also, three coastal defense sights give visitors a glimpse into military history along the peninsula.

The Long Beach Peninsula features a collection of various towns that offer fun exploration along your coastal journey. The town of Illwaco is home to a wide variety of shops and galleries to explore, as well as, delicious restaurants to experience. Serious Pizza offers delicious Neapolitan-style pizza, pub fare can be enjoyed at Salt Pub or Waterline Pub. Other options offering the previously mentioned seafood are located all along the peninsula.

If you're wanting to stop over for the night, Illwaco has accommodations for everyone including hotels, cottages and even historic lighthouse quarters. 

Other towns worth noting along the peninsula include Long Beach, Oysterville, Naselle, Raymond, Seaview, Nahcotta, Chinook and Ocean Park. 

If you're willing to get a little damp, we recommend checking out all the Peninsula has to offer without having to fight the traffic and beach crowds that come in the summer months. So pack your rain jacket and rain boots and head out to the coast.

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