Exploring The Best Activities In Cle Elum: Your Ultimate Guide

Things To Do In Cle Elum

Finding that perfect getaway spot isn’t always a walk in the park. Trust us, we’ve done our fair share of scouting, from corner to corner, for that special place. Finally, our adventures led us to the doorstep of Cle Elum, a hidden treasure nestled in Washington State.

This quaint town is brimming with everything from peaceful hiking trails and historic tours to luxurious retreats like Suncadia Resort. We’ve carefully curated a guide filled with all the best activities and little-known secrets to make your visit truly memorable.

So, are you ready to dive into the charm of Cle Elum?

Key Takeaways

  • Cle Elum is a hidden gem in Washington State filled with outdoor fun like hiking, biking, and golfing beside stunning scenery.
  • The town offers historical tours of buildings and museums for those interested in its rich past.
  • Adventure seekers can enjoy unique experiences like whitewater rafting combined with winery tours.
  • Art lovers have plenty to explore with local galleries showcasing regional talent.
  • Nearby towns provide extra charm and exploration opportunities, expanding the adventure beyond Cle Elum.

Outdoor Activities in Cle Elum

Things To Do In Cle Elum - A mountain biker navigates rugged trails in Cle Elum.

Explore picturesque hiking and biking trails, enjoy a round of golf in stunning surroundings, or immerse yourself in the natural beauty of Wenatchee National Forest. Cle Elum offers an array of outdoor adventures for nature enthusiasts.

Hiking and Biking Trails

We love the peace and excitement of outdoor adventures. That’s why we’re thrilled to share our favorite hiking and biking trails in Cle Elum.

  • Palouse to Cascades State Park Trail offers us a journey through diverse landscapes, from densely forested areas to unique scablands. It’s a perfect spot for both beginners and experts looking for adventure.
  • The Rat Pack Trail, known for its thrilling downhill paths, is a must-visit for mountain bikers seeking a rush. This trail challenges us with its sharp turns and fast descents.
  • Swauk Forest Discovery Trail provides scenic views that take our breath away. As we hike, the beauty of nature surrounds us, making every step worth it.
  • Exploring the pack trail gives us a different kind of thrill. Riding through the rugged terrain lets us connect with nature in an unforgettable way.
  • For those who love combining fitness with stunning views, the biking trails around Swiftwater Cellars are not to be missed. They offer paths that cater to every skill level, ensuring everyone has a great time.
  • Three Peaks Outfitters adds an extra layer of adventure by offering guided tours on some trails. Riding or hiking alongside knowledgeable guides enhances our experience significantly.

Each trail offers its own unique blend of challenges and scenic beauty, making them perfect destinations for anyone looking to explore quieter towns with rich outdoor activities. Whether we’re seasoned hikers or casual weekend bikers, these trails invite us to immerse ourselves in the natural beauty Cle Elum has to offer.


Golfers love Cle Elum for its stunning courses and views. The Sun Country Golf Resort & RV Park sits among the Cascade Mountains, offering an 18-hole course that challenges players of all levels.

With fairways lined by towering pines and greens that roll true, every shot here brings a new surprise against a breathtaking backdrop.

Prospector Golf Course, designed by Arnold Palmer’s team, adds its unique charm to our town’s golf scene. Its layout weaves through scenic landscapes, demanding precision and strategy.

Rope Rider Golf Course is another gem designed by Jacobsen Hardy. It honors the area’s coal mining history with a name reflecting those who rode the mining cables underground. These courses not only offer great golf but also tell stories of our heritage.

Wenatchee National Forest

Wenatchee National Forest offers endless trails for both beginners and seasoned hikers. This lush, green wonderland is perfect for outdoor lovers looking to explore nature’s beauty.

You’ll find clear streams, tall trees, and picturesque views that make every step worth it. It’s a great place to breathe fresh air and enjoy peace away from the city.

We also love taking our cameras and smartphones along the trails to capture stunning landscapes. For those interested in fishing or camping, you’ll find spots throughout the forest that are ideal for these activities.

Art enthusiasts can take inspiration from nature’s own gallery here – think of it as Pinterest but in real life! So pack your gear, bring your sense of adventure, and let’s make some memories in Wenatchee National Forest together.

Historical and Cultural Attractions

A traditional bakery with vintage signage and historic architecture in a bustling cityscape.

Discover local bakeries and eateries that have been serving up delicious treats for generations. Take a stroll through the historic buildings, each with its own unique story to tell.

Historic Buildings Tour

Looking to explore Cle Elum’s historical buildings? Here are the must-visit spots for an immersive experience:

  • South Cle Elum Rail Yard National Historic District: A preserved rail yard showcasing the town’s rich railroad history.
  • Telephone Museum: Delve into the evolution of communication technology through a diverse collection of telephone memorabilia.
  • Nelson Farm: Step back in time at this beautifully restored dairy farm, offering insights into early 20th-century rural life.
  • Roslyn Theatre: Immerse yourself in the charm of this historic theater, which has been entertaining audiences since its opening in 1889.
  • Glade Spring Spa: Unwind in a serene setting housed within a historic building while enjoying rejuvenating spa treatments.

Local Bakeries and Eateries

Let’s explore the local bakeries and eateries in Cle Elum:

  • Enjoy delectable treats from a 100-year-old bakery, offering a taste of history alongside delicious pastries.
  • Indulge in dining options at Mule & Elk Brewing Co. and The Brick Saloon, known for their charming ambience and delightful cuisine.
  • Visit attic treasures thrift store to savor artisanal creations paired with a cup of freshly brewed coffee.
  • Discover art galleries showcasing local talent while savoring delectable pastries at the quaint cafes dotted throughout Cle Elum.
  • Treat yourself to homemade delights at the local bakeries and eateries, each offering a unique culinary experience that captures the essence of this charming town.
  • Engage with friendly locals who eagerly share their favorite dishes, making your visit to these cozy establishments all the more enjoyable.

Art Galleries

Art Galleries in Cle Elum offer a diverse range of local artworks and historical pieces. Immerse yourself in the town’s cultural scene with these unique galleries and self-guided activities:

  • Pacific Crest Creatives: A boutique gallery featuring local art, jewelry, and handcrafted gifts.
  • Cle Elum Historical Society & Carpenter House Museum: Showcasing historical artifacts, including photographs and artwork that transport you back in time.
  • Gallery One: An artist co-op offering contemporary art exhibitions, workshops, and events for visitors to enjoy.
  • Great Northern & Cascade Railway Museum: This museum houses a collection of railroad-related artworks and artifacts that provide insight into the town’s industrial history.
  • Stewart Lodge Art Gallery: Located inside the Stewart Lodge at Suncadia Resort, this gallery presents a stunning display of regional art.
  • Southam Creative: A studio-gallery where visitors can admire and purchase original paintings inspired by the natural beauty of the Pacific Northwest.

Nearby Tour Options

Embark on memorable tours to Leavenworth and experience the charm of Bavarian architecture, enjoy a Columbia River boat ride, or brave a whitewater rafting and winery adventure. Read more for an unforgettable exploration!

Leavenworth Tours

Leavenworth Tours offer comprehensive and unique experiences, including visits to the popular Leavenworth Reindeer Farm. These tours are tailor-made for those seeking bespoke packages that cater to winter events and seasonal attractions.

There is no shortage of specialty tours, making this a prime destination for an unforgettable exploration amongst the tranquil and serene surroundings.

Columbia River Boat Ride

Discover the scenic beauty of the Columbia River with a boat ride operated by Troutwaters Outfitters. The tranquil waters offer a perfect setting for exploring the stunning landscapes while indulging in water sports.

As part of wine tours, these boat rides provide an added charm, allowing you to soak in the surrounding natural beauty as you savor your favorite wine from local vineyards. Tamarack’s Guide Service offers comprehensive boat tours, ensuring that every aspect of your journey along the river is expertly guided and fully enjoyable.

Whitewater Rafting and Winery Tour

Looking to add some excitement to your trip? Here’s a perfect blend of adventure and indulgence. Experience the rush of whitewater rafting and savor the flavors of local wines with our combination tour.

  • Navigate the thrilling rapids of Cle Elum River, guided by experts.
  • Unwind with a scenic winery tour at Swiftwater Cellars, known for its exquisite vintages.
  • Indulge in wine tasting sessions, learning about the unique characteristics of each vintage.
  • Enjoy a delightful lunch amidst the picturesque vineyards, pairing fine wines with gourmet cuisine.
  • Immerse yourself in the captivating history and artistry behind wine-making on an exclusive cellar tour.

Don’t miss out on this exhilarating expedition that promises unforgettable memories!

Exploring Small Towns Near Cle Elum

Discover quaint small towns near Cle Elum, each with its unique charm and history. Delve into the picturesque landscapes and cozy community vibes that await you just a stone’s throw away from Cle Elum.

Small Towns Near Tacoma, WA

When exploring the quieter and smaller towns near Tacoma, WA, consider the following:

  • Gig Harbor: A picturesque maritime city boasting a stunning harbor, boutique shops, and waterfront dining options.
  • Poulsbo: Known as “Little Norway,” this charming town offers Scandinavian heritage, quaint shops, and delectable bakeries.
  • Sumner: Rich in history and small-town charm, Sumner features vintage storefronts, a scenic downtown area, and a renowned rhubarb festival.
  • Steilacoom: Washington’s oldest incorporated town exudes historic appeal with its cozy cafes, waterfront parks, and Victorian-style architecture.

Remember to explore these delightful nearby towns for a truly enriching experience!

Small Towns Near Seattle

When exploring small towns near Seattle, we recommend the following places:

  • Edmonds: A picturesque coastal town offering quaint boutiques and galleries, perfect for a leisurely stroll by the waterfront.
  • Poulsbo: Known as “Little Norway,” this charming town boasts Scandinavian heritage, with its historic downtown lined with local shops and bakeries.
  • Snohomish: Rich in history, this town features antique shops, cozy cafes, and a walkable downtown area with unique finds.
  • Langley: Situated on Whidbey Island, this artistic community showcases galleries, specialty stores, and scenic views of the Puget Sound.

Explore these towns to uncover hidden gems and experience the tranquility of small-town life near Seattle.

Best Small Towns in Washington

Looking to explore the quieter and smaller towns of Washington? Here’s a list of charming small towns that offer rich history, local attractions, and natural beauty:

  • Leavenworth: This Bavarian-style village is known for its picturesque setting, vibrant festivals, and outdoor recreational opportunities.
  • Walla Walla: Renowned for its wineries, historic downtown, and cultural events, it’s a haven for wine enthusiasts and history buffs alike.
  • Port Townsend: With its Victorian architecture, art galleries, and maritime heritage, this town offers a unique blend of arts and culture.
  • Sequim: Famous for its lavender farms, scenic landscapes, and outdoor activities such as birdwatching and hiking.
  • Langley: A quaint town with waterfront views, artistic flair, and a thriving food scene offering a relaxed coastal getaway.
  • Winthrop: Nestled in the Methow Valley, it’s an Old West-themed town featuring western-style storefronts and access to outdoor recreation in the North Cascades.
  • Friday Harbor: Located on San Juan Island, this idyllic town boasts stunning coastal views along with whale watching opportunities and a laid-back island vibe.
  • Steilacoom: The state’s oldest incorporated town exudes historic charm with its 19th-century architecture, waterfront promenade, and scenic parks.
  • Poulsbo: Embracing its Norwegian heritage through Nordic-inspired shops and eateries while providing access to nearby marine activities on Liberty Bay.
  • Roslyn: Known as the filming location for the TV series Northern Exposure, it offers a glimpse into small-town life with historic buildings and mountain scenery.

These towns offer captivating experiences that cater to diverse interests while showcasing Washington State’s unique charm.

Best Small Towns in the West

Explore the best small towns in the West, offering unique experiences and charm that are worth discovering.

  • Crested Butte, Colorado – Immerse yourself in outdoor adventures while enjoying the town’s vibrant arts scene.
  • Carmel-by-the-Sea, California – Wander through fairytale-like streets and indulge in its artistic heritage.
  • Taos, New Mexico – Delve into rich Native American and Spanish cultures amidst striking desert landscapes.
  • Port Townsend, Washington – Uncover Victorian architecture and maritime history along the scenic Puget Sound.
  • Durango, Colorado – Embrace the Old West ambiance combined with outdoor sports and cultural attractions.

These captivating towns beckon us to explore their distinct appeal and uncover their hidden gems.

Suncadia Resort

Stay at Suncadia Resort for a relaxing retreat in the Cascade Mountains, with upscale accommodations and nearby attractions like Swiftwater Cellars and the Rope Rider Golf Course. Ready to unwind in nature’s embrace? Keep reading for more!


Hotels and resorts in Cle Elum cater to a range of preferences with amenities like pools, pet-friendly rooms, and luxury options. Popular choices for lodging include Suncadia Resort, where travelers have shared their accommodation experiences.

Nearby Attractions

Looking to explore quieter and smaller towns near Cle Elum? Here are some nearby attractions for you:

  • Leavenworth Tours: Experience the charming Bavarian-style village, surrounded by stunning mountain landscapes. Enjoy unique shopping, dining, and cultural experiences.
  • Columbia River Boat Ride: Embark on a scenic boat ride along the Columbia River, taking in picturesque views of the surrounding natural beauty and wildlife.
  • Whitewater Rafting and Winery Tour: Dive into an exhilarating whitewater rafting adventure, followed by a relaxing tour of local wineries nestled in serene countryside settings.
  • Small Towns Near Tacoma, WA: Discover the rich history and vibrant culture of Tacoma’s charming small towns, offering a blend of art, nature, and community spirit.
  • Small Towns Near Seattle: Escape the bustling city scene with a visit to the cozy small towns surrounding Seattle. Uncover hidden gems and immerse yourself in local traditions.
  • Best Small Towns in Washington: Explore lesser-known yet enchanting small towns across Washington State, each offering its own distinct character and allure.
  • Best Small Towns in the West: Venture beyond Washington to discover captivating small towns scattered throughout the Western United States, each brimming with unique experiences and hospitality.

Things To Do In Cle Elum Conclusion

In wrapping up, we’ve covered a plethora of activities and attractions in Cle Elum to make your visit an unforgettable experience. From exploring the great outdoors on hiking and biking trails, indulging in local culture with historic building tours and art galleries, to embarking on nearby adventures such as Leavenworth tours and whitewater rafting, there’s something for everyone.

Whether you’re interested in unwinding at Suncadia Resort or discovering the charm of small towns nearby, this guide has got you covered. So go ahead – plan your trip now and get ready to create lasting memories!

Things To Do In Cle Elum FAQs

1. What’s the best way to find out about cool activities in Cle Elum?

We always start by checking social media platforms and websites that talk about local attractions. They have loads of information, including YouTube videos that show what these places look like in real life.

2. How can we tell if an activity in Cle Elum is worth our time?

Look for advertisements or posts on the web with a lot of positive comments or high unique visitor numbers. A low bounce rate on their website means people found what they were looking for, which is a good sign.

3. Are there any tools to help us plan our visit to Cle Elum more effectively?

Yes! We use things like the Facebook Pixel when browsing activities online. It helps track which ads lead us to interesting YouTube videos or websites about Cle Elum, making planning easier.

4. Can watching YouTube videos really help us decide on activities?

Absolutely! Watching a YouTube video can give you a much clearer idea of what to expect than just reading about it… Seeing someone else enjoy rafting down the river or hiking through forests makes it easy for us to see ourselves doing those things too.

Similar Posts