Where to Stay in Olympic National Park → 4 Best Areas

Sweeping view of a winding road through the meadows of Olympic National Park with evergreen trees and distant mountain ranges under a blue sky with scattered clouds

With a rich history and mind-blowing natural wonders, Olympic National Park is one of the most beautiful places in the country! Located in Washington State on the Olympic Peninsula, this location attracts many visitors eager to explore the Pacific Northwest! 

The park itself is very big – with dozens of entrances and over 1500 mi2, it will take you 6 hours just to do a loop around the park with no stops! To help you with your decision on where to stay, I’ve compared all the areas around Olympic National Park and lodging options inside and outside the park. 

I will get into details below in the post, but the most popular place to stay near the park is Port Angeles – it’s the largest town in the area and a great starting point for exploring Hurricane Ridge, one of the park’s most popular attractions. 

In addition to recommending the top areas for your stay, I also compiled a list of the best hotels and lodges in this area – I went through all the available options and carefully picked the best ones. My recommendations include accommodations for all types of travelers and different budgets, so I’m sure you’ll find something to your liking. 

Just keep in mind that all the accommodations sell out super fast, so I highly recommend booking your place in advance to get the best deals and avoid staying in a town that’s too far away!

Let’s go, the Olympic National Forest is calling us!

Understanding the area

Serene morning scene with yellow chairs on a wooden dock overlooking a fog-covered lake surrounded by forested hills in Olympic National Park.

Before we get into entrances and areas in and around the park, I think it is important to tell you more about the 5 main areas inside the park and why you would want to visit it. 

This will help you decide where you will base yourself (as I said, the park is pretty big and you will want to base yourself around there to avoid driving too much every day). 

  • Hurricane Ridge: this is a large mountainous area within the park. It’s very easily accessible and offers opportunities for hiking, skiing, and snowboarding, which makes it one of the most popular destinations in the park. 
  • Lake Crescent/Sol Duc Valley: Lake Crescent is a deep lake with clear blue waters, while the Sol Duc Valley is the area that follows the Sol Duc River. The main points of interest in the valley are the hiking trails and the hot springs. 
  • Pacific Coast: this is the West Coast of the US, also known as the Pacific Seaboard, where the coast meets the North Pacific Ocean. The stretch of coast that goes along ONP is home to beautiful beaches and stunning scenery. 
  • Hoh Rainforest/ Quinault Rainforest: both are temperate rainforests, with Hoh Rainforest being the largest one and the wettest rainforest in the US. The Quinalt Rainforest is called the ‘Valley of the Rain Forest Giants’ due to the many large trees. 
  • The Staircase: a wilderness area in the Southeast corner of the Olympic Peninsula and one of the park’s hidden gems. The area got its name after a staircase built in 1890 over an impassable portion of the Skokomish River. 

Now, here is a quick answer to where to stay around each of those attractions – with links to book and driving time for each of them (you will find a more detailed explanation below in the post):

AttractionCity/Lodge nameDrive time
Hurricane Ridge Port Angeles – Olympic Lodge30 min
Lake Sutherland – Lake Sutherland Retreat50 min 
Lake CrescentLake Crescent Lodge or Log Cabin Resort 0 min
Port Angeles45 min 
Sol Duc ValleySol Duc Hot Springs Resort 0 min
Port Angeles1h 15 min
Pacific CoastForks3h
Kalaloch Lodge3.5h
Hoh RainforestForks50 min
Lake Quinault Lodge1h 40 min
Quinalt RainforestForks1h 25 min
Lake Quinault Lodge10 min
The StaircaseStaircase Campground0 min
Hoodsport30 min

Most people who visit Olympic National Park divide their stay between Port Angeles / Lake Crescent and Forks. If you have more than a couple of days to explore the park, I recommend you do the same. 

Spend at least 2 nights in Port Angeles or Lake Crescent to have enough time to explore Hurricane Ridge and Lake Crescent. Then, book a 2-night stay in Forks so you can visit the Hoh Rainforest and see some of the Pacific Beaches. 

And if you have even more time, I suggest spending an extra night in Port Angeles so you can drive out to the Sol Duc Hot Spring, as well as an extra night in Forks for a day trip to the Quinault Rainforest. 

Watch my video, it will give you a visual explanation of all the areas:

Here’s a map of the Olympic National Park areas I will be talking about in this post:

1. Port Angeles – where to stay near Hurricane Ridge

A tranquil harbor scene featuring a watchtower, calm blue waters, and a dock with moored boats, framed by green trees under a clear sky at Olympic National Park

Welcome to the gateway to the Olympic National Park! Port Angeles is situated on the North Peninsula and next to the Strait of Juan de Fuca, a quiet and laid-back town and the perfect place to start your Olympic National Park adventure!

Port Angeles is the most populated city in the area with around 20,000 people living here, and it’s located 2 miles (3 km) North of the Olympic National Park Visitor Center at the park’s North entrance. 

The entrance leads to Hurricane Ridge, the most easily accessed mountain area within the park, with hiking trails plus areas for skiing and snowboarding in the winter. Best of all – Hurricane Ridge is just a 40-minute drive away from Port Angeles, while the stunning Lake Crescent is even closer – just half an hour’s drive!

You’ll find many cool hiking trails around Lake Crescent; the Marymere Falls Trail (map) will take you up to the stunning waterfalls, while the Mount Storm King trail (map) is significantly more challenging with its steep incline and snowy peaks but offers unbeatable views – all the way to Canada! 

You can stay around Lake Crescent or Lake Sutherland (more on that in the next section) and be even closer to the Ridge, but accommodation options are more limited, and no places for dining out. Staying in the city means you’ll still be close to the Ridge, but you’ll be able to choose from a wider range of accommodations and get access to great restaurants. 

Another perk of staying in Port Angeles is the lovely waterfront promenade in the city center; the promenade offers stunning views and access to its pretty little pocket beaches. So, even if you don’t feel like hiking for a day, you can enjoy some outdoor time in Port Angeles. 

Below, you’ll find my selection of the best places to stay in Port Angeles, but if you don’t find something that catches your eye or there’s no availability for your dates, you can also look into accommodations at Sequin and Port Townsend, 2 smaller towns on the North Peninsula and near Port Angeles.

Luxury hotel
A collage of three photos showcasing accommodations near Olympic National Park: an aerial view of a lush golf course adjacent to an outdoor pool, a luxurious bedroom with a large bed and leather bench, and a grand living room with leather sofas and a full-height window offering scenic views of the greenery outside

Enjoy the Olympic Mountains views at this upscale lodge-style hotel that features an outdoor pool, a hot tub, a fitness room, and a lobby with a cozy fireplace and floor-to-ceiling windows to admire your surroundings. Each of the rooms at the Olympic Lodge Port Angeles has wooden furnishings and modern amenities such as flat-screen TVs and coffee makers.

Other accommodation options in Port Angeles

Modern lobby area with a comfortable brown sofa, armchairs, a wooden coffee table, and a view of the neighborhood through the window

A pet-friendly hotel situated near a golf course, offering free self-parking, laundry facilities, and a business center

A cozy, modest bedroom with a double bed, red bedspread, and wooden furnishings, illuminated by natural light

A nice motel, perfect for budget travelers, featuring family rooms equipped with a flat-screen TV and free Wi-Fi

Charming cottage with a spacious wooden deck surrounded by lush landscaping and towering evergreens

A cozy, fully furnished house with a large yard, an electric fireplace, and a charcoal barbecue

2. Around Lake Sutherland – near Hurricane Ridge (but outside the city)

Idyllic mountain landscape at Hurricane Ridge with a field of wildflowers in the foreground and snow-capped peaks under a clear blue sky, within Olympic National Park

If you’re looking to stay near Hurricane Ridge but don’t want to be in an urban environment, there’s no better place for it than Lake Sutherland. This lovely lake is situated 33 miles (53 km) Northwest of Hurricane Ridge. The area around Lake Sutherland has a very serene atmosphere and is the ideal spot for a relaxing stay. 

By choosing to stay here, you’ll be ideally located for exploring both Port Angeles (a 20-minute drive away) and Hurricane Ridge (a 50 min drive away). You can also follow the Elwha River and hike one of the trails in the Elwha Valley, and even spot Roosevelt elk and marmots. 

Since the area is more remote, you won’t find any restaurants or event venues, so you can spend your entire trip connecting to nature. Go out kayaking on the lake, spend the day fishing, or just chill on the patio of your accommodation and admire the views. Or, if you’re visiting in winter, this is the perfect base for your skiing trip. 

The accommodation around Lake Sutherland consists of lovely lake houses, cottages, and vacation rentals – you won’t find any chain hotels or luxury resorts, which is perfect if you want a quieter retreat. One thing to remember when booking your stay is that you should look for places with a kitchen so you can cook – there are no places to eat around here!

PRO TIP: if you need to stock up on groceries, I recommend stopping by Safeway (map) in Port Angeles and filling up your cart. This is a large supermarket that also features a deli and a bakery, so you’ll find everything you need in terms of food.

Luxury hotel
A collage of three photos featuring a stay near Olympic National Park: a charming cabin exterior surrounded by lush flowering shrubs and a hot tub, a cozy bedroom with a blue and red bedding, and a spacious living room with a vaulted ceiling and comfortable leather furniture.

A comfortable lakehouse in a central location for exploring the Little River Trail and Fairholme Olympic Discovery Trailhead. The house has 2 bedrooms with queen-sized beds, a large living area, a dining area, and a full kitchen. Outdoors, you can relax on the private patio overlooking the lake and grill your dinner on the barbecue.

Other accommodation options in Sequim

"Elegant A-frame house with a white facade, stone accents, and a second-story balcony set against a backdrop of lush green hills

A cottage with three bedrooms and two bathrooms, a kitchen, an outdoor patio, and easy beach access

Cozy bedroom with a queen-size bed, striped bedding, and wooden furniture, bathed in sunlight from the window

This 4-bedroom cottage can accommodate up to 8 people and has a lovely outdoor deck with a grill

Rustic living room with a wooden rocking chair, brick fireplace, and nautical decorations

A 3-bedroom cabin with a full kitchen and a large living room overlooking the lake, offering free kayaks

3. Forks – where to stay for rainforests & the Pacific Coast

Welcome sign for 'The City of Forks' featuring rustic lettering and emblem with mountain and river illustration, set against a backdrop of trees and a clear sky near Olympic National Park

If you’ve watched Twilight, you probably know that most of the story took place in Forks. Even though the movies weren’t filmed there, fans can explore key spots like La Push Beach, the Swan Residence, Bella’s truck, and Forks High School—bringing the pages to life!

Forks is located on the West side of the Peninsula, just 30 miles (50 km) South of the Hoh Rainforest Visitor Center in Olympic National Park, just over an hour’s drive from Port Angeles, and a great place to start your outdoor adventures before you head to the park!

This small town is not only famous because of the Twilight books – it boasts immense natural beauty and it’s very close to the Hoh Rainforest, one of the largest temperate rainforests in the continental US. Some of the best hikes here include the Hall of Mosses Trail (map)

FUN FACT: The Hoh Rainforest is home to the ‘Quietest Square Inch in the States’, also known as ‘One Square Inch of Silence’ – the quietest spot in the US!

Just a few minutes away from Forks, you’ll find 200 miles of wild rivers, so if you’re into fishing, kayaking, or rafting, this area is for you! This is also a good place to start exploring the rocky beaches on the Pacific coasts, such as the La Push beaches, another spot from the Twilight movies, or conquer the Hole-in-the-Wall from Rialto Beach hiking trail (map). 

PRO TIP: I can highly recommend visiting Quinault Rainforest -it is a bit further away from Forks (a 1.5-hour drive), but it’s much less crowded than the Hoh Rainforest, and it’s a spot that definitely deserves your attention!

There is a wide range of attractions in the Forks area, depending on whether you’re more into outdoor adventures or you like to visit museums and learn more about the town’s culture. I recommend paying a visit to the Forks Timber Museum and John’s Beachcombing Museum

The hotels in Forks are quite simple and have that 1990s vibe to them, but that doesn’t mean that you can’t have a pleasant stay – check out my top recommendations below!

Luxury hotel
A collage of three photos for a stay in Olympic National Park: a vibrant red-roofed lodge with an inviting deck surrounded by potted plants, a panoramic view of the landscape with outdoor seating under red umbrellas, and an elegant bedroom with a plush bed, navy accents, and a window-side seating area.

I just love how these inns always succeed in making you feel like you’re at home. They’re so cozy and offer all the amenities and comfort you might need! Enjoy your coffee on the accommodation terrace that offers some nice views of the mountains and of the garden. The inn also offers a daily breakfast.

Other accommodation options in Forks

A spacious and inviting lodge interior with plush leather sofas, a large fireplace, and rustic wooden decor

A lovely inn that offers air-conditioned log cabins with private patios, fireplaces, private bathrooms, and full kitchens

Simple and neat white cottage with a front porch, located in a residential area

Guests at the Pacific Inn Motel will benefit from free parking, laundry facilities, and an on-site restaurant

A rustic wooden bed frame with clean white bedding in a room with natural light

Enjoy some tranquility in this cozy guesthouse that has a backyard, a spacious room, and a TV

4. Inside the park – for the least amount of driving

Twilight view of a large lodge with glowing windows, reflecting off the calm waters of a lake surrounded by dense forest in Olympic National Park

As I already mentioned, there are a total of 12 entrances to the national park, but the most popular ones are in the North (Hurricane Ridge area and Lake Crescent area), Northwest (Ozette, Neah Bay, Shi Shi Beach), Central (Hoh Rain Forest Entrance), South (Lake Quinault), and Southwest (Kalaloch).

I recommend staying inside the park in the last section because in all honesty the accommodation there still has a lot of room for improvement and are overpriced for what they are. Most of the lodges are in need of renovations and are not as comfortable as the accommodations in the nearby towns. However, if your priority is being close to the top attractions and you don’t care much about hotel amenities, staying inside the park is a good idea!

TIP: Regardless of where you enter the park, you need to have a way to get to your accommodation and to all the popular attractions – you definitely need a car! The park is very vast, and you can’t explore on foot, so if you’re not visiting with your personal vehicle, the first thing to do is rent a car – you’ll thank me later! 

Once you’ve picked an entry point to the park, you need to choose where to stay, i.e., decide whether you want to camp or rent lodging. The following sections feature all the Olympic National Park lodges and the best campsites you can stay at within the park’s borders. 

You may wonder why staying in the park is last on my list of recommendations. Well, I have a good reason for this – the accommodations in the park don’t provide good value for money! Even though staying within the park’s borders is convenient in terms of driving times, the lodges are quite expensive and don’t offer a lot. 

4.1 Olympic National Park lodges

Visitor center or lodge on a hill with panoramic views of the Olympic mountain range, under an overcast sky, serving as a starting point for exploration within Olympic National Park

The list below features all the lodges within the park’s borders, and even though they can be pricey during peak season, they tend to sell out faster than lighting. So, if you want to stay in any of these lodges, I highly recommend booking at least 6 months to a year in advance. 

  • Lake Crescent Lodge – this accommodation is one of the most beautiful historic lodges in the park – built back in 1915, it offers rooms and cabins with a rustic vibe. Lake Crescent Lodge is the best of the park lodges – it’s centrally located inside the park, so it’s easy to reach the main attractions, and it’s open during peak season. It also has a (slightly overpriced) restaurant so you don’t have to drive all the way to Port Angeles for dinner if you don’t want to. 
  • Kalaloch Lodge – located on Washington’s West coast, near the Southwest entrance of the park, this is the only coastal lodge in Olympic National Park and offers both cabin rentals and rooms in the main Kalaloch Lodge. The lodge is open year-round and provides quick access to Kalaloch Beach and the Second Beach trailhead. The only thing I don’t like about it is that it is not really close to anything. 
  • Lake Quinault Lodge – situated in the Southwest corner of the park, Lake Quinault Lodge was built in 1926. It offers comfortable, family-friendly accommodation year-round. Guests will enjoy an indoor pool, a sauna, an on-site restaurant, a gift shop, and spacious rooms – all year round!
  • Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort – what better way to end a day than with a bath in the hot spring pools at Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort? Located deep inside the park, a short hike away from Sol Duc Falls, this seasonal resort is 60 miles (100 km) away from the Hurricane Ridge visitor center along the Sol Duc River. 
  • Log Cabin Resort – offering a wide range of accommodation options from lakeside chalets, lodge rooms, rustic cabins, and more, Log Cabin Resort is located within walking distance from the river, on the North side of the park, 40 miles (60 km) away from the Hurricane Ridge Visitor Center, and operates seasonally. A nice perk is that it also provides kitchen access!

4.2 Olympic National Park campsites & RV parks

Camping site set amidst the towering, moss-covered trees of Olympic National Park with a tent and a trailer, highlighting the park's lush, dense forest environment

Sleeping under the starry sky is one of the best ways to experience a national park, so camping is a popular activity among the many visitors to the park. Within the park’s borders, there are as many as 14 campgrounds, but I handpicked the 6 best and presented them in a list below. 

Most of the campgrounds on the list accept reservations, and you should book your spot at least 6 months in advance – it’s even better if you do it one year prior to your visit. You can make reservations through the recreation.gov website and if you’re planning a backpacking trip, this is also where you can obtain a permit for wilderness camping. 

  1. Heart O’ the Hills Campground – located near the Lake Angels trailhead, this campground is open year-round and works on a first-come-first-served basis. There are 105 camping sites here, and you can also bring your RV. Some of the facilities at the Heart O’ the Hills Campground include potable water and flush toilets.
  2. Staircase Campground – another great campground that’s situated near Lake Cushman, this spot has 49 sites, including RV plots. The campground operates seasonally and is equipped with accessible restrooms and potable water.
  3. Kalaloch Campground – the campground has 170 sites and it’s open all year round! You can make online reservations during peak season from the end of May until mid-September, but off-season, it operates on a first-come-first-serve principle. 
  4. Mora Campground – tucked away in a coastal forest near the Quillayute River, this campground is open throughout the year and offers 94 sites, but there’s room for RVs as well. Reservations are available online 6 months in advance. 
  5. Log Cabin Resort RV & Campground – this is one of the most-developed campsites in the park, with 38 sites, an on-site restaurant, a deli shop, a general store, boat rentals, and more. It’s open seasonally and can accommodate both large RVs and tent campers, but reservations can only be made through the phone. 
  6. Sol Duc Hot Springs RV & Campground – situated near the Sol Duc Resort, this campground operates during peak season only and offers 82 tent sites and 17 RV campsites, as well as access to the resort facilities at an additional cost. 

NOTE: the nightly price for camping at one of these campgrounds is US$24, except at the Sol Duc campground, which offers more facilities and provides lodging at prices starting from US$33 to US$58.

👑 Luxury price:US$250
💵 Mid-range:US$150
🛏️ Budget:US$80
📍 Best area:Port Angeles
🛎️ Best luxury hotel:Olympic Lodge by Ayres
💵 Best mid-range hotel:Super 8 by Wyndham
👛 Best budget hotel:Angeles Motel

Practical information for visiting Olympic National Park

Sign for the Olympic National Forest along a road, signaling the transition into the dense, green woodland area, a part of the broader Olympic National Park region

Before I wrap up this article, I wanted to give you a few tips that will help you plan a worry-free trip:

  • Park pass: all visitors to Olympic National Park must have a valid park pass. This costs US$15 per person or US$30 per vehicle – you can purchase the pass here. You can also get an annual pass for US$55 or get an America the Beautiful pass that will cover all the national park entrances. 
  • Get the NPS App: download the app to plan your ONP activities, the distance between popular attractions, drive times, and check for road closures. 
  • Rent a car: if you don’t drive to the park, you need to rent a car; it takes about 6 hours to do a full loop around the park without any stops, and Highway 101 can take you around the entire park. 
  • Prepare for bad weather: the weather in the park can be very unpredictable – it can even snow in July, and you can also expect rain. It’s essential to check the weather forecast and pack warm clothes and waterproof shoes. 
  • Have an offline map: cell service within the park can be spotty, so you should either download an offline map or buy a paper map of the park. 
  • Find lodging with a kitchen: if you’re staying within the park and not one of the nearby towns, dining options are almost non-existent. So it’s important to book accommodation with a kitchen where you can cook your own meals. 
  • Install a hiking app: I recommend getting the AllTrails app to help you find and navigate the best trails within the park. 
  • Beware of bears: if you’re backpacking through the park, it’s possible that you’ll see bears. Read the park’s safety guidelines here.

FAQs about where to stay in Olympic National Park

The grand entrance sign of Olympic National Park, carved from wood and stone with a forest background, welcoming visitors to the natural splendor

⛰️ Where should I stay when visiting Olympic National Park?

Port Angeles is the best area to stay in Olympic National Park, as it’s super close to the Visitor Center and has some amazing hotels like Olympic Lodge by Ayres and Super 8 by Wyndham, plus other cool attractions to visit before heading to the park. 

📅 How many days do you need in Olympic National Park?

You’ll want to spend 3 or 4 days in Olympic National Park so you can explore all the big attractions like the Quinault Rain Forest, Lake Quinault, and the nearby areas like Ruby Beach and Rialto Beach. 

🌤️ What is the best time of the year to visit Olympic National Park?

The best time to visit the Olympic National Forest and Park is July through August or early September at the latest. That’s when the weather is perfect for sightseeing, and most roads and facilities are open.

🏙️ What city is near Olympic National Park?

The largest city near Olympic National Park is Port Angeles and this is the best place to stay on your ONP visit. Other nearby towns include Forks, Sequin, Port Townsend, and Hoodsport.

💯 What are the best cities to stay in Olympic National Park?

Port Angeles and Forks are the best cities to stay in while visiting ONP, and both have some great accommodation options, like the Olympic Lodge by Ayres in Port Angeles and the Misty Valley Inn in Forks, and other facilities like restaurants and grocery shops.

🥘 Where to eat in and around Olympic National Park?

Some of the best places to eat around the national park are Granny’s Cafe in the heart of the park, Frugals in Port Angeles, and Sully’s Drive-In in Forks. 

🗺️ Where to stay on the Olympic Peninsula?

The top spots for staying on the Olympic Peninsula are the towns of Port Angeles and Port Townsend, as well as the Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort in the Sol Duc Valley. 

🤔 Is it better to stay in Forks or Port Angeles?

If the top spots you want to visit are Hurricane Ridge, Sol Duc Valley, and Lake Crescent, then it’s a better idea to stay in Port Angeles. However, if you want to explore the Hoh Rainforest and the Northern Pacific Coast, it’s better to stay in Forks

🏨 What hotels in Olympic National Park have nice views?

The Kalaloch Lodge offers stunning ocean views, the Lake Crescent Lodge overlooks the lake, and the Sol Duc Hot Springs Resort provides the best views of the snow-capped mountains. 

🏙️ What town is closest to Olympic National Park?

The closest town to ONP is Port Angeles, just 1.8 miles (2.8 km away), while Sequim is 17 miles (27 km) away, and Forks is 25 miles (40 km) away.


Majestic sea stacks crowned with greenery jut from the ocean against a dramatic sunrise sky with radiant clouds at Olympic National Park's coastal area

Are you as amazed as I am by the beauty of this place? I hope this post helped you decide where to stay in Olympic National Park and which accommodation to pick.

There are so many options in the post, so for some extra help, here are my 2 favorite places to stay in Port Angeles:

Just keep in mind that all the good hotels will sell out in a second! That’s why I always recommend booking in advance, especially in places like Olympic National Park – it will save you lots of time and money!

Don’t forget to leave me a comment below if you have any questions or suggestions about the Pacific Northwest area!

Safe travels,


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