Cascade Loop

The Cascade Loop Byway is a 440-mile love letter to Washington praising her natural beauty and charisma. The route contains three of the state’s designated scenic byways—the Stevens Pass Greenway, North Cascades Highway and the Whidbey Scenic Isle Way.

From the waterfront city of Everett, head east over Stevens Pass, where alpine villages welcome and snowy spires beckon. 

Drop from pine forests into fertile orchards and take in the pink haze of apple blossoms in the spring. Pick up luscious seasonal fruit from a roadside stand that operates on the honor system then take a dip in Lake Chelan as the sun bakes high desert hills. Play cowboy in Winthrop.

Climb west over more mountains, and then descend into Skagit Valley with its acres of blooming tulips. At last, cross over dramatic Deception Pass to Whidbey Island, where gentle hills and seaside towns offer a soft place to land. If yours is a passing attraction to Washington State, watch out; this byway may turn it into true love forever.

CLICK TO EXPLORE ON MAP to find more things to do, places to stay and eat along this rout

1. Everett

Spend a delightful half-day strolling one of the west coast's largest marinas where you'll find plenty of waterside food and beverage. Downtown Everett has a lot of locally owned boutique shops and diners and great arts scene. Many an actor has started their journey to Broadway at the city's Village Theatre.

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2. Snohomish

Nestled between the waters of Puget Sound and the Cascade Mountains, Snohomish is the perfect place for family adventures. Once known mainly as the 'Antique Capital of the Northwest' Snohomish has broadened its appeal with a riverwalk, over 40 specialty shops, 30 restaurants and taverns, and a few wineries.

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3. Monroe

Home of the Evergreen State Fairgrounds that features events all year round, Monroe can also boast of one of the largest Vaux Swift migrations in the world. Other local attractions include the Reptile Zoo, Evergreen Speedway and the Equestrian Park.

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4. Skykomish

Located in the Mount Baker-Snoqualmie National Forest, Skykomish was founded as a railroad town. Grab lunch alongside the rushing river and listen as trains rumble through town and you‚’ll be transported to a time before this byway existed. Enjoy recreational access to the surrounding mountains, including skiing at nearby Stevens Pass.

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5. Stevens Pass Ski and Mountain Biking Area

Located on the crest of the Cascade Range, we receive abundant and frequent snowfall. Cool air often drifts from the eastern slope of the range through the Stevens Pass area, keeping our snow relatively dry.

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6. Leavenworth

If you love cute towns you must visit Leavenworth. The architecture is right out of Bavaria but then again, so is the rugged landscape and outdoor recreation. During Maifest in spring, you can see Tyrolean dancers and check out (or enter) the Looking Good in Lederhosen contest. And of course no self-respecting German village would be complete without an Oktoberfest celebration, and Leavenworth's is the largest in the world outside Germany. Whether inside or out, the environment is so authentic you'll feel like you just got dropped into the heart of the Swiss Alps.

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7. Wenatchee

Located at the confluence of two rivers, the Columbia and Wenatchee, seated by the foothills and towering peaks of the Cascades. Come see the “Apple Capital of the World” and it’s many orchards. Other attractions include the Pybus Public Farmers Market, The Apple Capital Loop Trail, Ohme Gardens, Riverfront Park, Mission Ridge Ski and Board Resort, Rocky Reach Dam Park and more!

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8. Douglas County Museum in Waterville

This small but very well curated museum features items used by Native Americans and pioneers of the late 1800s as well as a great meteorite and mineral collection.

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9. Ribbon Cliff Landslide

Located three miles north of the town of Entiat along the shore of the Columbia River, you’ll find remnants of the Ribbon Cliff landslide. The personal recollections collected from local newspaper archives are a record of a night of horror during and after the landslide on the memorable night of December 14, 1872. Geologists have described this as the largest earthquake in the northwest in recorded history and some reports credit it with a near total blockage of the Columbia River. The State Highway Department has created a small pullout and posted a display explaining what transpired here. While you are at the foot of the slide site, the most impressive and panoramic view can be seen from the opposite shore of the Columbia River at Daroga State Park. 

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10. “The Chief” at Beebe Springs Nature Area

Take a minute to pull over at the Beebe Springs Nature Area to view the metal 3D sculpture of "The Chief" on horseback wearing a feathered headdress hoists a Columbia River salmon over his head. The sculpture was created by Virgil "Smoker" Marchand, a member of the Lakes Band of the Colville Confederated Tribes.

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11. Lake Chelan

The Lake Chelan Valley is a great place to visit and an even better place to call home. The Valley offers four seasons of recreation, charming shopping districts, and bountiful agriculture – including an emerging wine industry.

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12. Pateros

Located at the confluence of the Columbia and Methow Rivers, Pateros was originally established as Ive’s Landing around 1896 by Lee Ives when he began farming near the confluence of the Methow and Columbia Rivers and built his landmark hotel on the banks of the Columbia.

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13. Twisp

Located at the convergence of the North Cascades Highway and the Loup Loup Pass crossing to the Okanogan Trails Scenic Byway, Twisp will probably be part of any journey you take to any of our north central and northeast Washington byways. There are plenty of good reasons to pull over. From a world-class coffee roaster to a vibrant arts community—not to mention near unlimited outdoor recreation, Twisp is worth a stop.

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14. Winthrop

Located in the Methow Valley, you'll find the old west town of Winthrop‚ a town that has earned a solid reputation for hospitality and charm. Explore the downtown and head up to savor the magnificent views and enjoy a fine dinner or take a horseback ride at Sun Mountain Lodge.

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15. Washington Pass Overlook

Wheelchair accessible, this trail is paved to a lookout on a ledge overlooking Liberty Bell Mountain. This alone is worth the trip from the west side, because of spectacular views, and the myriad hiking trails in the area including access to the Pacific Crest Trail. It is a must-stop photo-op on your North Cascades Highway road trip.

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16. Skagit Tours

Come be a part of Skagit history! Seattle City Light has been offering the popular Diablo Lake & Lunch Tour for more than 80 years. Cruise past amazing scenery while you learn about the area's natural and cultural history and the Skagit River Hydroelectric Project which provides clean, low-cost, renewable power to Seattle.

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17. Cascadian Farm Roadside Stand

As you're descending the mountain, you'll probably be craving a fresh raspberry milkshake made with real ice cream, right? Just past Marblemount, pull over to the tiny farm stand (open seasonally) and prepare to have your expectations blown... in a good way. Our staff loves this place and cannot convince the car to pass by without stopping.

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18. Sedro-Woolley

Experience Washington State's rich history in Sedro-Woolley, based on the can-do spirit brought by hard working men and women as they forged their way in the great forests of this valley called Skagit. Visiting Sedro-Woolley’s historic downtown is a trip back in time. Brick buildings, fronted with comfortable wood benches beneath old-fashioned light poles are the backdrop for the numerous chainsaw carvings and murals depicting the city’s colorful past.

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19. La Conner

Situated a few miles south of WA-20 on the banks of the Swinomish Channel, this cute town is the stuff of dreams for die-hard browsers‚ but with plenty of options for those who‚ just prefer to sit and contemplate life with a frosty local brew in hand. You can plan to spend an hour here, but trust us, it will end up being four.
 

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20. Deception Pass Bridge & State Park

Crossing onto Whidbey Island over Deception Pass is one of the region's spectacular driving moments. It's a thrill whether it's your first drive or your thousandth time across. Stop and take lots of pictures using #scenicwa

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21. Oak Harbor

Nestled at the water’s edge, Oak Harbor is a vibrant community packed with activity for families of all ages. The unparalleled beauty of Deception Pass boasts expansive views and unforgettable sunsets and serves as a fitting backdrop to the myriad of outdoor adventures that await.

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22. Coupeville

Quiet waterfront farming community located in the heart of Ebey's Landing National Historical Reserve, filled with scenic views, cute shops, and amazing restaurants.

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23. Meerkerk Gardens

Meerkerk Rhododendron Gardens was founded by Ann and Max Meerkerk in the early 1960's. Enchanted by Whidbey Island, they began the Gardens with 13 acres. Together, they visualized creating a Pacific Northwest style woodland garden enveloped by a forest preserve. The Rothschild's Exbury Gardens in England, Max's life in Asia, and Washington's native Rhododendron macrophyllum influenced the Meerkerks.

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24. Langley

Perched on a bluff on Whidbey Island, overlooking the waters of Saratoga Passage and the Cascade Mountains, Langley’s quiet streets are lined with historic buildings, book stores, antique shops, clothing boutiques, cafes and restaurants. Walk the streets of Langley, Whidbey Island’s “Village by the Sea,” and you will know what it’s like to escape from ordinary life.

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25. Mukilteo

Mukilteo is a waterfront community situated on Puget Sound in southern Snohomish County, about 25 miles north of Seattle. It is located in the northwestern region of Washington State. This scenic area has views of the Olympic Mountains to the west and the Northern Cascade Mountains to the north and east.  Annual precipitation for the region is approximately 35 inches and visitors find moderate weather conditions from May through the end of October.

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