Yes, travel to the Olympic Peninsula without a car can be done
Travel to the Olympic Peninsula without a car can be a challenge, but it can be done. There are many resources to help you plan your visit sans automobile. We hope this blog post will inspire you plan and navigate your way around with a bicycle or on foot. If you are bicycling, check out the Olympic Discovery Trail for transportation corridors across the peninsula.
If you are arriving at SEATAC Airport, Seattle, The Dungeness Line or Rocket Transportation shuttles are easy to find at the south end of the airport. The Dungeness Line has a scheduled route, while Rocket Transportation will deliver you to your specified destination.
Links to local websitesto connect around the Olympic Peninsula:
- Clallam Transit Bus. Contact the Clallam Transit center directly for questions about their routes and prices 800-858-3747. Keep in mind, also, that you can rack a bicycle on the Clallam Transit buses for free on a first-come first-served space.
- Mason County Transit Authority. All MTA buses are equipped with bike racks to carry two or three conventional single seat, two-wheeled bicycles.
- Jefferson Transit. This website has a page with a listing of other auto-less transportation options for the entire area – Seattle, Victoria, Kitsap, Whidbey Island. A useful resource!
- Grays Harbor Transit
- Another option is hiring a private tour guide to take you anywhere you want to go. Here is a link with a list of them.
If you are based in Port Angeles, you’ll find these bus lines with some suggestions of things to see and how to get there.
#30 Port Angeles to Sequim. Once you’re in Sequim you can schedule a Dial-a-Ride to take you out to the Dungeness Rec Area where there is camping and hiking. This needs to be scheduled 24 hours in advance.
From Sequim to Port Townsend take the Jefferson Transit #8 bus. There is a cool new way to explore this charming, Victorian seaport. It’s the PTe-rider. Hop aboard the first electric shuttle service in Washington State. Open April through October, they offer taxi service tours of Port Townsend’s historic districts.
#10 Port Angeles to Joyce on Hwy 112 will drop you off at Camp Hayden Rd. which is about 4 miles south of Salt Creek Recreation Area. It would be a hike to get to Salt Creek, but if it’s low tide and you are a tidepooler, it might be worth it. Even if you don’t want to go as far as Salt Creek, I’d recommend the blackberry pie at the Blackberry Cafe – also the jalapeno burger if it’s still on the menu. Two must dos are the Joyce General Store and the Joyce Museum. Words can’t adequately explain – it’s part history, part now. Start by talking to Margaret at the museum. She can tell you the historical details, local lore and guide you through the museum that used to be the old railroad station.
#20 Port Angeles to the Olympic National Park Visitor Information Center where passes and permits can be bought. This route will drop you off a couple blocks down the hill from the Visitor Information Center. You would need to hire a vehicle to take you up the mountain, either taxi or guide. Here’s a link to guide services. Green 8 Taxi Service. Black Tie Taxi Service.
#14 Port Angeles along Hwy 101 around Lake Crescent. Stopping here at Lake Crescent you can hike to Marymere Falls and into the backcountry. A visit to Lake Crescent Lodge is an historical treat. Sit on the sun porch with cool drink in hand, relaxing in wicker chairs and watching the kayakers and swimmers. This route will also take you to Forks, if you ever want to travel from its serene shores.
#15 Forks to La Push. At La Push are the hikes to Second Beach and Third Beach, both great for setting up a tent and falling asleep to the sound of the waves. These beaches are located in the National Park and so camping permits to stay overnight need to be obtained from the Visitor Center in Port Angeles. There are no amenities or camping sites on these beaches and everything must be packed in and packed back out.
Forks south to Lake Quinault. Jefferson Travel from Forks (Forks Transfer Center is located at 552 S Forks Ave & E Street) can take you south to Lake Quinault area, stopping at Lower Hoh, Kalaloch, Queets and then to Amanda Park Mercantile at the lake. From Amanda Park you can transfer to Grays Harbor Transit, which will require a separate fare and exact change.
#16 Port Angeles to Neah Bay. The Makah Reservation has its own bus system once the Clallam County system drops you off. There is a bus that will take you to the Cape Flattery Trail but contact this bus system directly to make sure. Cape Flattery is the most NW point of the contiguous United States. There are views of Tattoosh Island and lighthouse along with excellent wildlife viewing. If the whales aren’t around, the birds will be. There is no service of this bus system on Saturdays, Sundays, or Holidays. Be sure to visit the Makah Cultural and Resource Center. It’s a world-class museum with artifacts and displays highlighting the history and culture of this part of the world.
Travel to Victoria, Canada – Bring your passport!
The side trip popular with many visitors is to travel to Victoria, BC, Canada, is a simple, 90-minutes, walk-on ride on the Coho Ferry. The ferry docks in the beautiful inner harbor across the street from the Parliament Building. Make your visit a “two-nation vacation”! If you are bringing your bike or would just like to have a lovely walk, put the Galloping Goose Trail from Victoria to Sooke on your itinerary. Here are some photos from their website.
Have fun and travel safely!