The Snoqualmie Valley, about 30 minutes or so from Seattle, Washington, between Seattle and the Cascade Mountains, encompasses the affluent small communities of Duvall, Carnation, Fall City, Snoqualmie, and North Bend.
The valley is chock full of things to do, including shopping, dining, golf, entertainment, recreation, and even gambling at the local casino. The community is particularly known for its outdoor activities and sites, including waterfalls, shimmering lakes, and mountain trails and peaks for a variety of activities like rock climbing, hiking, biking, fishing, kayaking, and more.
Here are just a few of the things you can do in the Snoqualmie Valley.
The Snoqualmie Valley Museum
Perhaps the best place to begin your adventure of exploring Snoqualmie Valley is the Snoqualmie Valley Museum.
What is now a thriving museum was once a modest schoolteacher’s attempt to preserve a bit of local history for her students. The museum’s first location was a classroom in the school where she taught back in 1939.
With donated items from locals, she continued to grow, catalog, and showcase her cherished collection of artifacts.
When the museum outgrew its classroom, and the school grew to the point that it needed the space, the residents came together to help move the museum to a more appropriate location.
Snoqualmie Falls is unequivocally the gem of the Snoqualmie Valley and has been since it was inhabited by Native Americans hundreds of years ago.
More than 1.5 million people make their way to Snoqualmie Falls each year, one of Washington’s most enjoyed scenic attractions. They go there to explore the 270-foot waterfall, which was a sacred place to the Snoqualmie tribe and spawned many legends.
The site features an observation deck situated in a two-acre park, a gift shop, and the Salish Lodge.
There’s an interpretive trail, just over a half-mile long, that leads from viewpoints at the upper falls to those in the lower falls.
The waterfall is lit at night, so if it takes you all day to explore the park and hike the trails, you can still experience the falls in full glory in the evening.
Snoqualmie Falls is pet-friendly, with leashes required.
Another staple in the Snoqualmie Valley is Mount Si, on the western portion of the Cascade Range, a prominent feature in North Bend, an area made famous by its appearance as a setting in the television show Twin Peaks.
The mountain, named for a man named “Uncle Si” Merritt, offers a four-mile-long trail (eight-mile round trip) for hiking. Hiking those eight miles is said to take an estimated four to seven hours.
Start at the parking lot of the Mount Si Natural Resources Conservation Area. Explore the interpretive display and boardwalk trail to learn as you hike.
In the winter months, Mount Si is appreciated for the opportunity it provides for skiing.
The Northwest Railway Museum
Much of the growth in Washington state, early on, is attributed to railroads. Railroads have laid their tracks in the history of the area, including the Snoqualmie Valley, where you’ll find the Northwest Railway Museum, where you can explore exhibits, ride a train, or visit the gift shop.
The historic Snoqualmie depot was constructed in 1890 and has since been restored to its turn-of-the-century glory.
The Train Shed Exhibit Hall features freight cars, locomotives, and passenger cars in addition to maintenance equipment.
There are several programs and learning opportunities for railway enthusiasts.
For those who want to take a gamble, grab a bite to eat, and experience entertainment, the Snoqualmie Casino fits the bill with slots, table games, dining, and a live show.
Restaurants include Vista for prime steaks and seafood, 12 Moons Asian cuisine, the Falls Buffet, Snoqualmie Cafe and Deli featuring a late-night menu, and Drip coffee shop.
There’s a diverse array of entertainment at the casino, including appearances by names like Tyler Henry the Hollywood Medium, Queensrÿche, and Criss Angel, in addition to outdoor summer concerts.
Rattlesnake Ridge is an outdoor playground that features Rattlesnake Ledge, Rattlesnake Mountain, Rattlesnake Lake, Cedar River Watershed, and the Raging River Mountain Bike Trail System.
Enjoy hiking, biking, swimming, fishing, kayaking, picnicking, and photography with awe-inspiring views.
Tree House Point
Pete Nelson is a designer and builder of incredible custom treehouses that emanate rustic elegance and modern luxury with natural elements amidst the treetops.
His wife, Judy, has a passion for cooking and hosting. They combined their passions and purchased four acres of land to build a treehouse.
In all, there are now seven treehouses on the property. Schedule to take a one-hour tour or book a stay and enjoy one-of-a-kind lodging.
Area Farms and Farmer's Markets
The Snoqualmie River Valley area is known for its fruitful agriculture, so it’s commonplace to make a day of picking your own fruits and vegetables, taking a farm tour, petting animals, or visiting quaint gift shops with locally sourced goods.
A few of the local farms worth visiting include Bybee Farms, Jubilee Farm, Meadowbrook Farm Preserve, and Oxbow Farm and Conservation Center.
There are several farmers’ markets throughout the valley and surrounding areas, including those in Carnation, Issaquah, North Bend, Redmond, and Sammamish.
North Bend Premium Outlets
There’s plenty of shopping in the Snoqualmie Valley. One of the more popular shopping destinations is the North Bend Premium Outlets, featuring name-brand stores, such as Carter’s, Coach, Eddie Bauer, Gap, Hot Topic, Kate Spade New York, Michael Kors, Rue 21, and more.
While you’re there, make sure to stop in at the Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory for treats like caramel and candy apples, chocolate-dipped fruit, and more.
The Snoqualmie Valley is a great place to visit, but it’s an even better place to live. No matter your age, interest, or lifestyle, there’s always something to do.
The area is rich in history, art, and culture and has much to offer in the way of shopping, dining, recreation, and entertainment.
Ask your real estate agent for more information about living in the Snoqualmie Valley.