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Discover the Best of Pierce County

An exciting guide to must-visit destinations for activities, entertainment and education


 

Best of Pierce County Washington

By Elizabeth Ray


Nestled in the heart of Washington state, Pierce County offers a diverse array of attractions perfect for locals and tourists alike. From cultural experiences and outdoor adventures to unique entertainment options, this area is a treasure trove of activities waiting to be explored. Here’s a look at some of the most exciting destinations throughout Pierce County to embark on this summer.


Escape Hour Gig Harbor: Immersive Escape Room Adventures


For those seeking a thrilling and immersive experience, Escape Hour Gig Harbor offers award-winning escape rooms that challenge your mind and teamwork skills. Known as Washington's top-rated escape room destination, Escape Hour provides a variety of themed rooms, each meticulously designed to create an engaging and unforgettable adventure. With multiple awards and thousands of 5-star reviews, it’s clear why this attraction is a favorite among locals and visitors alike. Test your problem-solving abilities and see if you can escape in time!


Harbor History Museum: Exploring Gig Harbor’s Past


The Harbor History Museum in Gig Harbor offers a captivating look into the area’s rich history. With exhibits featuring maritime heritage, local artifacts and interactive displays, the museum provides an educational and engaging experience. Highlights include the restored Shenandoah, a historic fishing vessel, and a pioneer schoolhouse. The museum’s dedication to preserving and sharing Gig Harbor’s history makes it a valuable resource for both residents and visitors.


Harbor WildWatch Marine Life Center: Explore the Wonders of Puget Sound


The Harbor WildWatch Marine Life Center in Gig Harbor is a captivating destination dedicated to fostering a connection between the community and the local marine environment. Located at Skansie Brothers Park, the center offers interactive exhibits and educational programs that highlight the diverse marine life of the Puget Sound. Visitors can engage with touch tanks featuring starfish, sea cucumbers, and other marine creatures, providing a hands-on learning experience for all ages. Harbor WildWatch also hosts guided beach walks, marine biology classes, and special events aimed at promoting marine conservation and environmental stewardship. With its emphasis on education and community involvement, the Marine Life Center is a must-visit for those looking to deepen their understanding of the local ecosystem and contribute to its preservation.


Mount Rainier: The Crown Jewel of the Pacific Northwest


No visit to Pierce County is complete without a trip to Mount Rainier National Park. This iconic mountain, standing at 14,410 feet, offers a breathtaking backdrop for a variety of outdoor activities. Hiking trails cater to all levels, from leisurely walks through wildflower-filled meadows to challenging summit climbs. Wildlife enthusiasts can spot marmots, black bears, and a variety of bird species. Mount Rainier’s majestic beauty and diverse ecosystems make it a must-visit destination for nature lovers and adventure seekers.


Ocean5: Entertainment and Sustainability Combined


Ocean5 in Gig Harbor is a unique entertainment center that combines fun and sustainability. With a variety of activities including bowling, laser tag and arcade games, there’s something for everyone. Ocean5 is committed to environmental responsibility, incorporating sustainable practices in their operations. The center also features a full-service restaurant offering delicious, locally sourced food. Whether you’re looking to host a party or enjoy a night out with friends or family, Ocean5 provides an engaging and eco-friendly experience.


Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium: A Family Friendly Adventure


Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium is a perfect destination for families and animal lovers. This unique facility combines a zoo and an aquarium, providing visitors with a chance to see animals from both land and sea. Highlights include the Asian Forest Sanctuary, home to tigers, leopards and gibbons, and the Pacific Seas Aquarium, where sharks, sea turtles and jellyfish mesmerize visitors. The zoo’s commitment to conservation and education ensures a meaningful experience for all ages. With interactive exhibits and engaging animal encounters, Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium offers an unforgettable day of exploration.


Stadium Golf: A Unique Golfing Experience


Stadium Golf in Tacoma offers a fresh take on the traditional driving range. This venue features state-of-the-art technology that tracks your shots, providing a fun and competitive atmosphere for golfers of all skill levels. The facility includes comfortable seating areas and a food and beverage service, making it an excellent spot for social gatherings or casual practice sessions. Whether you’re a seasoned golfer or a beginner, Stadium Golf provides a modern and enjoyable golfing experience.


Tacoma’s Glassblowing Studio: Create Your Own Glass Art


Tacoma’s Glassblowing Studio offers a unique opportunity to learn the art of glassblowing. Visitors can participate in hands-on classes and create their own glass pieces, from ornaments to paperweights. The studio’s skilled instructors guide participants through the process, ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience. Whether you’re a beginner or have some experience, Tacoma’s Glassblowing Studio provides a fascinating and creative activity.


Tacoma’s Museum District: A Cultural Haven


The Tacoma Museum District is a cultural powerhouse, housing a collection of institutions that celebrate art, history and innovation. At the Museum of Glass, visitors can marvel at stunning glass artworks and watch live glass-blowing demonstrations. Just a short walk away, the Washington State History Museum offers a deep dive into the region’s rich past, with interactive exhibits that bring history to life. The LeMay - America’s Car Museum is a car enthusiast's dream, showcasing an impressive collection of classic and vintage automobiles. These museums collectively provide a comprehensive cultural experience that is both educational and inspiring.


Throwing Mud Gallery: Hands-On Art Experience


Located in Tacoma, Throwing Mud Gallery is a creative haven for pottery enthusiasts. This gallery and studio offer pottery classes for all skill levels, allowing visitors to try their hand at the pottery wheel and create their own masterpieces. The gallery also showcases a beautiful collection of handmade ceramics by local artists. Whether you’re interested in taking a class or purchasing unique pottery pieces, Throwing Mud Gallery provides a hands-on and enriching artistic experience.


The Triple Knock: Tacoma’s Premier Pinball Bar


For a nostalgic yet lively night out, visit The Triple Knock, Tacoma’s beloved pinball bar. This venue features a wide selection of pinball machines, craft beers and a friendly atmosphere. It’s a great spot to unwind with friends, enjoy some friendly competition, and experience the charm of classic pinball games. The Triple Knock’s combination of retro fun and modern amenities makes it a unique and popular destination in Pierce County.


Uncorked Canvas: Sip-and-Paint Fun


Uncorked Canvas in Tacoma combines art and socializing in a fun and relaxed setting. This paint-and-sip studio offers guided painting sessions where participants can create their own artwork while enjoying a glass of wine or other beverages. With step-by-step instructions from experienced artists, even beginners can produce impressive results. Uncorked Canvas is a fantastic option for a night out with friends, a date, or a creative solo activity.

Pierce County’s diverse attractions offer something for everyone, whether you’re seeking cultural enrichment, outdoor adventures, or unique entertainment experiences. These destinations showcase the best of the region, making it a vibrant and exciting place to explore.


Nestled in the heart of Washington state, Pierce County offers a diverse array of attractions perfect for locals and tourists alike. From cultural experiences and outdoor adventures to unique entertainment options, this area is a treasure trove of activities waiting to be explored. Here’s a look at some of the most exciting destinations throughout Pierce County to embark on this summer.


Escape Hour Gig Harbor: Immersive Escape Room Adventures


For those seeking a thrilling and immersive experience, Escape Hour Gig Harbor offers award-winning escape rooms that challenge your mind and teamwork skills. Known as Washington's top-rated escape room destination, Escape Hour provides a variety of themed rooms, each meticulously designed to create an engaging and unforgettable adventure. With multiple awards and thousands of 5-star reviews, it’s clear why this attraction is a favorite among locals and visitors alike. Test your problem-solving abilities and see if you can escape in time!


Harbor History Museum: Exploring Gig Harbor’s Past


The Harbor History Museum in Gig Harbor offers a captivating look into the area’s rich history. With exhibits featuring maritime heritage, local artifacts and interactive displays, the museum provides an educational and engaging experience. Highlights include the restored Shenandoah, a historic fishing vessel, and a pioneer schoolhouse. The museum’s dedication to preserving and sharing Gig Harbor’s history makes it a valuable resource for both residents and visitors.


Harbor WildWatch Marine Life Center: Explore the Wonders of Puget Sound


The Harbor WildWatch Marine Life Center in Gig Harbor is a captivating destination dedicated to fostering a connection between the community and the local marine environment. Located at Skansie Brothers Park, the center offers interactive exhibits and educational programs that highlight the diverse marine life of the Puget Sound. Visitors can engage with touch tanks featuring starfish, sea cucumbers, and other marine creatures, providing a hands-on learning experience for all ages. Harbor WildWatch also hosts guided beach walks, marine biology classes, and special events aimed at promoting marine conservation and environmental stewardship. With its emphasis on education and community involvement, the Marine Life Center is a must-visit for those looking to deepen their understanding of the local ecosystem and contribute to its preservation.


Mount Rainier: The Crown Jewel of the Pacific Northwest


No visit to Pierce County is complete without a trip to Mount Rainier National Park. This iconic mountain, standing at 14,410 feet, offers a breathtaking backdrop for a variety of outdoor activities. Hiking trails cater to all levels, from leisurely walks through wildflower-filled meadows to challenging summit climbs. Wildlife enthusiasts can spot marmots, black bears, and a variety of bird species. Mount Rainier’s majestic beauty and diverse ecosystems make it a must-visit destination for nature lovers and adventure seekers.


Ocean5: Entertainment and Sustainability Combined


Ocean5 in Gig Harbor is a unique entertainment center that combines fun and sustainability. With a variety of activities including bowling, laser tag and arcade games, there’s something for everyone. Ocean5 is committed to environmental responsibility, incorporating sustainable practices in their operations. The center also features a full-service restaurant offering delicious, locally sourced food. Whether you’re looking to host a party or enjoy a night out with friends or family, Ocean5 provides an engaging and eco-friendly experience.


Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium: A Family Friendly Adventure

Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium is a perfect destination for families and animal lovers. This unique facility combines a zoo and an aquarium, providing visitors with a chance to see animals from both land and sea. Highlights include the Asian Forest Sanctuary, home to tigers, leopards and gibbons, and the Pacific Seas Aquarium, where sharks, sea turtles and jellyfish mesmerize visitors. The zoo’s commitment to conservation and education ensures a meaningful experience for all ages. With interactive exhibits and engaging animal encounters, Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium offers an unforgettable day of exploration.


Stadium Golf: A Unique Golfing Experience


Stadium Golf in Tacoma offers a fresh take on the traditional driving range. This venue features state-of-the-art technology that tracks your shots, providing a fun and competitive atmosphere for golfers of all skill levels. The facility includes comfortable seating areas and a food and beverage service, making it an excellent spot for social gatherings or casual practice sessions. Whether you’re a seasoned golfer or a beginner, Stadium Golf provides a modern and enjoyable golfing experience.


Tacoma’s Glassblowing Studio: Create Your Own Glass Art


Tacoma’s Glassblowing Studio offers a unique opportunity to learn the art of glassblowing. Visitors can participate in hands-on classes and create their own glass pieces, from ornaments to paperweights. The studio’s skilled instructors guide participants through the process, ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience. Whether you’re a beginner or have some experience, Tacoma’s Glassblowing Studio provides a fascinating and creative activity.


Tacoma’s Museum District: A Cultural Haven


The Tacoma Museum District is a cultural powerhouse, housing a collection of institutions that celebrate art, history and innovation. At the Museum of Glass, visitors can marvel at stunning glass artworks and watch live glass-blowing demonstrations. Just a short walk away, the Washington State History Museum offers a deep dive into the region’s rich past, with interactive exhibits that bring history to life. The LeMay - America’s Car Museum is a car enthusiast's dream, showcasing an impressive collection of classic and vintage automobiles. These museums collectively provide a comprehensive cultural experience that is both educational and inspiring.


Throwing Mud Gallery: Hands-On Art Experience


Located in Tacoma, Throwing Mud Gallery is a creative haven for pottery enthusiasts. This gallery and studio offer pottery classes for all skill levels, allowing visitors to try their hand at the pottery wheel and create their own masterpieces. The gallery also showcases a beautiful collection of handmade ceramics by local artists. Whether you’re interested in taking a class or purchasing unique pottery pieces, Throwing Mud Gallery provides a hands-on and enriching artistic experience.


The Triple Knock: Tacoma’s Premier Pinball Bar


For a nostalgic yet lively night out, visit The Triple Knock, Tacoma’s beloved pinball bar. This venue features a wide selection of pinball machines, craft beers and a friendly atmosphere. It’s a great spot to unwind with friends, enjoy some friendly competition, and experience the charm of classic pinball games. The Triple Knock’s combination of retro fun and modern amenities makes it a unique and popular destination in Pierce County.


Uncorked Canvas: Sip-and-Paint Fun


Uncorked Canvas in Tacoma combines art and socializing in a fun and relaxed setting. This paint-and-sip studio offers guided painting sessions where participants can create their own artwork while enjoying a glass of wine or other beverages. With step-by-step instructions from experienced artists, even beginners can produce impressive results. Uncorked Canvas is a fantastic option for a night out with friends, a date, or a creative solo activity.

Pierce County’s diverse attractions offer something for everyone, whether you’re seeking cultural enrichment, outdoor adventures, or unique entertainment experiences. These destinations showcase the best of the region, making it a vibrant and exciting place to explore.


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