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What Is the State of Washington Known for & Famous For

If you intend to visit Washington, you need to know more about this state. Washington is one of the most famous states in the US that attracts thousands of visitors each year. However, many still don’t know what this state is famous for.

Washington is known for its picturesque landscapes and many tourist attractions. It’s the only state named after a president, George Washington. It has the largest number of glaciers among the states. The famous football team, Seattle Seahawks, comes from Seattle, Washington.

Read on to learn more about Washington’s background and attractions. We’ll give you a complete list of all the places that make Washington a great state. 

Nicknamed the Evergreen State

Washington’s nickname is “The Evergreen State” since this state has a high annual rain level with several evergreen forests. The grasses and shrubbery are green throughout the year. The Olympic Peninsula forests are the only rainforests in the United States and among the rainiest places in the world.

However, rainfall decreases dramatically from west to east. 

Western Washington has a mild climate during the year, while Eastern Washington is covered with dunes and dry grasslands and has extreme weather. It’s too cold in the winters and scorching hot in the summers. 

So, you can see both wet and dry lands in this state. 

Named After George Washington

Washington state is the only US state to be named after a president (George Washington). Congress passed a bill in 1853 to name it after the “father of the country”, but at this point, it was only considered a territory. But in 1889, it was officially recognized as a state.

Although Washington state is the only state named after a president, Washington D.C., which is a district, not a state, is also named after the same president. It’s fitting that different places are named after a president like George Washington since he was the first president of the United States (hence the term “father of the country”).

Seattle

Most of Washington state’s population lives in Seattle, the largest city in Washington state and North America’s Pacific Northwest. This 4000-year-old city has many attractions that make it a great tourist destination. 

One thing that Seattle is highly famous for is the grunge movement. 

The Museum of Pop Culture in Seattle gives you a complete history of this movement. Grunge, also called the Seattle Sound, was an alternative rock genre and subculture that started in the 1980s. This style links punk rock to heavy metal.

Gum Wall

The gum wall is located at the Market Theatre and first gained popularity in the 1990s when theatre patrons would stick their chewed gum on the wall. It wasn’t supposed to become a tourist attraction, but it slowly became famous in Seattle over the years. 

Many people visit it every day to stick their own gum onto it.

Although most of the attention it attracts is positive, there are some people who believe the wall is unsanitary and promotes littering. But even still, it continues to be a popular tourist attraction for many visitors, and locals, around the city.

Space Needle

The Space Needle tower is located in Seattle and is one of the city’s famous icons. There is a gift shop on the ground floor, a rotating restaurant, and an observation deck at the 520’ (158.5 m) top. 

You can use the elevator in the needle to go to the top of the tower and observe the whole city and the natural landscapes like Mount Rainier. Make a reservation at the rotating restaurant and watch the city while eating your meal. 

The Puget Sound

The Puget sound surrounds many cities in the area, but the main one is located in Seattle. You can explore this area by going to the downtown waterfront district in the city. If you’re interested in nature, you’ll certainly be impressed by the beauty of this phenomenon.

There are many activities for friends, families, and couples to enjoy at Puget Sound that include:

  • Walking around the waterfront, taking in all the beautiful nature.
  • Taking a boat ride to explore.
  • Explore the different locations and islands.

A popular island in the Puget Sound that tourists like to visit is Bainbridge island. 

It’s easy to reach from Seattle because there’s a ferry that goes directly between them. Some of the major cities that are connected to the Puget Sound, other than Seattle, include Tacoma and Olympia, so you can enjoy the beauty from different parts of the state.

Beautiful Scenery

If you’re looking for a state with an abundance of beautiful scenery, you can certainly count on Washington to give you what you’re looking for. 

One place that’s a must-see has to be Snoqualmie Falls which features a beautiful waterfall, surrounded by nature. You can look at the waterfall from many different areas and distances, and it photographs extremely well. 

Another popular attraction in Washington is the Olympic National Park, which covers a vast amount of land. It’s one of the most popular tourist attractions in Washington due to the wide array of trails and charming nature.

Some other beautiful places in Washington include:

  • Mount Rainier
  • Hoh rainforest
  • The Palouse
  • Seattle city

Agriculture

There are over 39,000 farms operating across Washington, so it’s a vital part of the country’s agricultural industry. One of the most common crops grown in Washington is winter wheat. Other popular crops grown in Washington include:

  • Lentils
  • Barley
  • Peas

Washington is popular in the agricultural industry because it has favorable soil and appropriate weather conditions. 

Birthplace of Starbucks

Starbucks is the most popular restaurant chain in the world, and it was born in none other than Washington. In 1971, Starbucks opened its first store in Pike Place Market, and the rest is history.

It’s hard to believe that such a prominent restaurant had very humble beginnings in Seattle, but that’s exactly how it started. If you’re a Starbucks fan and interested in seeing the history in person, you can visit the store if you ever decide to come to Seattle. 

Much of the original fixtures are still there, and it’s a popular attraction in Washington.

Aerospace industry

Washington is an integral part of the aerospace industry, not just in the United States, but across the globe. While Boeing was created in Washington, there are other important things in the aerospace industry that rely on Washington’s expertise and resources. 

This includes:

  • Building military aircraft.
  • Building products and vehicles for space travel.

Some of the best aerospace professionals in the industry work in Washington, so the research, development, and design of everything are always of the best quality. If you’re ever interested in visiting an aerospace museum in Washington, you could consider the Flying Heritage Museum.

This museum displays many types of aircraft and is located in an old hanger in Everett. 

Boeing

As I briefly mentioned in the last section, Boeing originated in Washington. Over the years, Boeing has helped to shape and redefine the aviation industry and is arguably one of the most innovative companies when it comes to international travel, along with other companies like Airbus and Lockheed Martin. 

The founder of Boeing was William E Boeing, and although he was born in Michigan, he founded the company in Seattle.

Microsoft 

Washington, but more specifically, Seattle, is considered a growing tech hub in the United States. That’s no surprise when you realize that some of the most prominent tech companies are based in and around the state. 

Microsoft is one of the most prominent companies that has its headquarters in Washington. Although that is the case now, it wasn’t always that way. Microsoft was originally founded in New Mexico, but the company changed headquarters in the late 70s.

Amazon.com

While Microsoft is one tech company that has close ties with Washington, Amazon is another. It was founded in 1994 in Bellevue, Washington in Jeff Bezos’ garage. Originally started as a book store, it slowly grew into what it is today, which is the world’s biggest online retailer.

The main headquarters are located in Seattle, Washington, but there are secondary headquarters in Virginia. There are guided tours of the Amazon headquarters, but they only occur on certain days. 

You’ll need to book a tour if you’re interested, and it’s certainly worth it if you’re interested in learning more about Amazon and its history.

Glaciers

Washington is the second most glaciated state in the country after Alaska. The reason there are so many glaciers present is due to the freezing weather in the many mountains surrounding the state. 

Some of the most famous glaciers in Washington include:

  • Emmons glacier
  • Hoh glacier
  • Tahoma glacier

There are trails available for certain glaciers, and it’s definitely a fun way to spend the day.

The Rocky Mountains

The Rocky Mountains are the largest group of mountains in North America, which is why they are so well-known across the world.

Since the mountain range is so long, it spreads across many states, including Idaho, Wyoming, and Colorado. They even pass through parts of Canada. And of course, they spread across Washington, too.

You can see the Rocky Mountains in the Northeast section of the state, so they don’t stretch across the entire region. 

Mount Rainier National Park

Mount Rainier is Washington state’s tallest mountain and the fifth-highest point in the United States. Located in the southern part of Seattle, it has the most dangerous active volcano in the continental U.S. because of its proximity to the Seattle metropolitan area. 

The mountain is covered with the most glacial ice in the United States. 

Mount Rainier National Park offers many activities and entertainment, and it’s an excellent place for hiking and watching sunrises and sunsets. You can visit this fantastic mountain park year-round. There are campsites along the way, and you can see the beautiful waterfalls and forest lands while hiking. 

North Cascades National Park

North Cascade National Park sits among high peaks and beautiful blue lakes by glacial slits. The mountains in this place are also called “the American Alps” as many people believe they’re the most scenic in Washington. 

You can enjoy hiking, camping, and cycling among these mountains. The highway to the park closes during winter. 

Olympic National Park

The Olympic mountains are located in the Northwest corner of Washington State in the Olympic National Park. 

The breathtaking glacial ice makes these mountains worth visiting. Olympic National Park also has dense rainforests and coastal areas, although some parts of the park haven’t yet been explored. 

There are also many hot mineral springs in this park, creating an excellent place for using the spas and taking baths in the mineral pools. You can stay there using a wide range of accommodations, including cabins, resorts, and RV parking lots. 

Northwest Trek

The Northwest Trek is a park you can visit if you want to see wildlife in their natural habitats. It’s an exciting place for anyone to spend the day, as you can walk around or even drive a vehicle to view the different animals roaming around.

The park is situated in Eatonville and is open seven days a week, so there are plenty of opportunities to visit. 

Some of the animals you can expect to see here include:

  • Elk
  • Deer
  • Bison
  • Swans

Snoqualmie Falls

Snoqualmie Falls is a waterfall in the east of Seattle on the Snoqualmie River between Snoqualmie and Fall City. It’s one of Washington state’s most popular attractions as it appeared in the T.V series Twin Peaks. 

You can find a park, an excellent location for hiking and having a picnic, a gift shop, and an observation deck near these falls. 

Mount St Helens

Mount St. Helens volcano erupted and caused major damage to Seattle and the surrounding states in 1980. Because of the lives lost, a national monument sits at the base of Mount St. Helens where you can see the animal life and vegetation recovery in the area. 

It has many campgrounds spread across the entire area, allowing you to stay and enjoy the unique sceneries of each area.

Mount Baker

Mount Baker is a glacial volcano in Washington that is certainly worth a visit if you’re ever in the area. You can drive around and enjoy the scenes, or you can hike the trails to get a closer look. The hiking trail is highly challenging, even for experienced hikers, and can take around nine or ten hours to complete.

Although this is an active volcano, it hasn’t erupted in over 6,000 years. Plus, there is a ski area at Mount Baker if that’s what you’re interested in, and it generally runs from winter until early summer. 

Lake Chelan

Also known as George Washington’s playground, Lake Chelan is in the North-central Washington state in Chelan County. You can swim in its blue water and go fishing, kayaking, and jet skiing. 

There are also events and activities, such as wine tasting, and you can enjoy the nightlife at the restaurants near the lake. 

San Juan Islands

San Juan County is in the Northwest of the United States with a mild climate and 172 islands and reefs. You can travel to some of these islands by ferry or kayak and watch whales near the islands. 

Each island also has its unique features to offer. Lopez Island has pastoral views and bikeable roads. Orcas Island offers you outdoor adventures in Moran State Park, where you can find forest cabins. 

You can also enjoy the water-view resorts and harbors such as Friday Harbor, Roche Harbor, and Snug Harbor. Maya’s Legacy Whale Watching at the Friday Harbor offers tours for marine wildlife and seasonal whale watching.

Jimi Hendrix

Jimi Hendrix, the famous musician, singer, and songwriter, born in 1942, was from Seattle. He played rock, psychedelic rock, and hard rock, and he was also famous for his blues and R&B performances. He received many music awards during his lifetime and is one of the most influential artists among electric guitar players despite his short mainstream career. 

Apple Industry

Approximately 12 billion apples are produced in Washington each year and compose around 80% of the fruit crops in the state. Because of this, the apple industry relies heavily on Washington.

I mentioned earlier that Washington has excellent, nutrient-rich soil and favorable weather, and that’s precisely why apples are grown so much here. And the apples aren’t just used in the States, but they’re exported to many parts of the world.

Lumber Industry

Washington is the second largest producer of Lumber in the United States, after Oregon. Although Washington was at one point the number one place for lumber production, Oregon surpassed it.

Even still, Washington produces an incredible amount annually, so it’s an important part of the lumber industry. Lumber produced in Washington is exported to many global markets, so it makes up an important part of the US economy.

Mining Industry

Washington isn’t the most important state when it comes to minerals, but it’s certainly up there as one of the most important. 

Many things are mined in Washington, including:

  • Clay
  • Gravel
  • Gold
  • Peat

Final Words

Of course, this short list doesn’t do justice to the amazing Washington state. These are just a brief of its icons and attractions and a few of its many famous people and figures. Visiting Washington state, you can always be surprised by its many beauties and charms. 

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