Sequim Washington

Sequim Washington. Relax in the rainshadow of the Olympic Peninsula or enjoy the local activities and beauty of the Pacific Northwest.

In a land of steep mountains and narrow valleys, all of it covered in a rain forest blanket, Sequim is unique in that it is located in the wide and flat Sequim-Dungeness Valley in the heart of the Olympic rain shadow.

Just so you know, Sequim is pronounced SKWIM.

I know, weird. But you're SURE to be corrected if you call it SEE-kwim. 

Oh what the heck - try it just for kicks.

The Meaning of Sequim

According to the Washington Parks website, "the word 'Sequim' was believed by many to mean 'quiet waters.'

But: "In 2010, a tribal linguist who is an expert in the study of dying languages determined ... the correct translation of 'Sequim' is a 'place for going to shoot,' a reference to the Sequim-Dungeness Valley's once great elk and waterfowl hunting."

Sequim Washington is 17 miles to the east of Port Angeles, WA. But, if Port Angeles is not your starting point, then:

  • Port Townsend is 31 miles (50.2 km) to the east of Sequim, a drive of 42 minutes.
  • Shelton WA is 82.8 miles (133.25 km) to the south of Sequim, a drive of 1 hour 42 minutes
  • Forks is 73 miles (117.5 km) to the west of Sequim, a drive of 1.5 hours
  • Aberdeen WA is 127 miles (204.4 km) to the south of Sequim, a drive of 2.5 hours
  • Seattle is 122 miles (196.34 km) to the east via the Bainbridge Ferry, a commute of 2 hours 5 minutes in total, if the ferry wait is not too long.

Sequim Washington is Semi-Arid

Check the Sequim Weather Forecast

In Sequim, the fields need to be irrigated.

You can almost (but not quite) count on a visit to Sequim to be a dry one. The area is considered semi-arid thanks to the rain shadow effect, getting on average 16 inches of rain per year. What you can frequently see is a distinct "blue hole" right over the town of Sequim and the surrounding areas, even when dark clouds ring the horizon in all directions. It's pretty cool!

That said, it's not like you'll find prickly pear cactus or gila monsters here. The area is green, but gets only small amounts of precipitation during the late spring, summer and early autumn.

Sequim Lavender Farms

The cool and dry climate is very kind to lavender, which is no doubt why the Sequim-Dungeness Valley and surrounding areas host over 30 lavender farms.

In fact, Sequim bears the title of Lavender Capital of North America.

Sequim Washington Festivals

With so many lavender fields in Sequim, it's no wonder they celebrate with a lavender festival each year.

Sequim Lavender Festival

If your visit brings you to Sequim in July, plan on experiencing the Sequim Lavender Festival which takes place during the third week in July.

Tour many of the lavender farms, satiate your curiosity and appetite for all things lavender, plus peruse the street fair, where local artisans will offer you a plethora of one-of-a-kind handmade goods, from lavender products, to jewelry, to leather, ceramics, photography, fine art, and much much more.

From immune system support, to antiseptic action, to delicious taste and aroma, essential oil of lavender provides some amazing benefits. See Benefits of Lavender Oil to learn more.

Sequim Irrigation Festival

The Sequim Irrigation Festival has been celebrated in the midst of May for the last 120+ years running. It is a recognition of the necessity of irrigation throughout the Sequim Dungeness Valley.

Roosevelt Elk Herd in Sequim

As you drive into Sequim from the east, notice the “elk” signs with their possibly flashing twin yellow lights. They flash whenever the sensors detect movement of the herd, which is frequently. (Pretty sure it could also be black-tail deer moving, of course, or raccoons even…)

Nevertheless, Sequim’s local herd of Roosevelt elk is frequently seen grazing in the fields to the southeast of Sequim. See more elk pictures here.

Sequim Washington Tourism

You'll find unique shopping opportunities – art galleries, gifts, books, clothing, in and around downtown Sequim. Plus, Sequim’s Farmer’s Market is active every Saturday (May through October), where you can find local fresh produce plus hand-crafted artisanal goods.

Sequim attractions include but are not limited to the following. Follow the link for detailed information...

  • Dungeness National Wildlife Refuge Center featuring the Dungeness Spit and New Dungeness Lighthouse
  • Dungeness River Audubon Center and Railroad Bridge Park
  • Olympic Game Farm
  • Sequim lavender farms
  • 7 Cedars Casino and the Native Art Gallery and Gift Shop on the Jamestown S'Klallam Indian Reservation

The Olympic National Park is not far away.

  • Consider dedicating a few vacation days to the Olympic National Park
  • Deer Park is just a few miles to the west; from Hwy 101, turn south on Deer Park Road and follow the signs.
  • Hurricane Ridge is roughly 1.25 hours away. Drive west into Port Angeles on Hwy 101, and then turn south (left) on Race Street. The signage is very clear.
  • Don’t forget the camera....

Other links you may like:

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