Among other metrics, Olympia has been named one of 29 Best Small Cities in the U.S., based (partially) on its coffee.
According to National Geographic Traveler, the most widely read travel magazine, Olympia ranks among 29 top cities nationwide based on 10 categories that matter to both visitors and locals. The editors give a special nod to Olympia in the categories of Most Caffeinated (coffee shops per capita) and Greenest (for number of parks).
So, you want to spend a perfect weekend in this fair city? Here are some of our top picks to experience this caffeinated, green destination.
Friday, 10 a.m.
Arrive early and start your long weekend with a free coffee cupping at the Olympia Coffee Roasters flagship café located downtown. This craft coffee hotspot, as featured on the South Sound Coffee Trail, welcomes newbies and caffeinated connoisseurs alike for an educational tasting opportunity.
Mid-Morning, Lunch on the Go
Check out the handcrafted culture and organically grown produce while sipping locally made kombucha at the Olympia Farmers Market. Open every Saturday through March, and then Thursday through Sunday from April–October, this flavorful enclave provides access to the best seafood, produce, cheeses, and locally made foods–all under one roof.
Explore Tumwater Falls, an easy half mile, pet-friendly trail around the Deschutes River. This waterfall is easily accessible and the short trail makes this the perfect winter leg stretcher, no matter the weather.
Known as “The Best Little Italian Restaurant in Town,” enjoy delicious pasta, pizza and more authentic Italian fare at Pellegrino’s Italian Kitchen.
Spend the day tasting along the Bountiful Byway.
Designate a driver, bring a picnic and explore the scenic views and tasting opportunities along the Bountiful Byway. Stops include Medicine Creek Winery, Salish Seas Organic Liqueurs, Stottle Winery or Madsen Family Cellars. Find the shops and stops that spark your interest at bountifulbyway.com.
Enjoy fresh air, meet local wildlife or enjoy the sunset on a clear day with a nature walk at the Billy Frank Jr Nisqually National Wildlife Refuge.
Drinks & Dinner
End the day with a local craft brew and fare from the visiting food truck at Top Rung Brewing Co., a unique brewery run by local firefighters.
Enjoy a decidedly different brunch experience at Budd Bay Café where you’ll dine with waterfront views and a menu that’s been voted “Best Brunch in the South Sound” for over 20 consecutive years.
Head to Priest Point Park for 314 acres of easy trails, views of Puget Sound, downtown Olympia and the Capitol Building.
Stay in a variety of hotels, inns and bed and breakfasts detailed at experienceolympia.com.
Save the Date
Oly Old Time Festival 10th Anniversary, Feb. 15-18
Enjoy musical performances or even pick up a fiddle and learn some old time music for yourself! Celebrating it's 10 year anniversary, this unique festival will be complete with food trucks, beer, wine, gelato and of course old time fiddle music.View the complete schedule of performers and more here.
Paper Airplane Flight School, Feb. 17
It's time to get schooled. In the art of paper airplanes that is. Head to the Olympic Flight Museum to learn the art of folding, preparing and flying the best paper airplane around. Participant fee is $7 and spectator fee is $5. Come one, come all for a day of flight! Find more info here.
Pie Fest 10, The Finale, Feb. 24
Indulge your sweet tooth with delicious and creative pies. Pie lovers unite at Olympia Pie Fest. Whether you’re of the baking or eating variety, Olympia Pie Fest offers something for all. Come to compete in the bake-off or sample homemade pies from bakers around the region. Click here for more information.