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Washington travel, tourism and hotel guide. Washington's coast is much more than a beach destination. Native Americans thrived here for thousands of years before Lewis and Clark first sighted the Pacific Ocean from Washington. Now families and lovers come to snuggle and watch the waves do somersaults on the sand. Adventure abounds on both land and sea, be it birding or whale watching, kite flying or winter storm watching, horseback riding or clam digging. Abundant oysters and fish are the freshest anywhere, whether you catch them yourself or just order them in a restaurant. And remember to sample recipes that include the world-famous cranberries grown in local bogs along the cranberry coast.

Washington is served by Seattle/Tacoma International Airport (SEA) in Seattle, Washington. Visit the Airports & Airlines section for more information.

If you enjoy being transported back in time, the Washington Coast will ignite your imagination. At Cape Disappointment (formerly Fort Canby) State Park, you can relive the adventures of Lewis and Clark who completed their quest for the Pacific near this spot almost 200 years ago. Built on a rocky headland, and home to a century-old lighthouse, this interpretive center contains exhaustive journal excerpts, maps and photo-murals of places along the explorers' route.

During the summer months, be sure to take a boat tour to watch gray whales as they pass Washington during their migration to summer feeding grounds. Weighing up to 40 tons and growing up to 40 feet in length, these giant mammals are also gentle and curious by nature. During the height of the season (about mid-March through April) the whales can be easy to find, but their combination of grace and size is impossible to capture in words. Go To Experience Washington, the official state web site for Washington tourism.

Travel & Health Insurance

Travel and medical insurance is strongly recommended for all overseas travel. Medical costs in the United States are extremely high. Visiting a doctor in the United States for even simple complaints could cost several hundred dollars for the doctor's appointment, pathology tests and medication.

Travel and health insurance is strongly recommended for all overseas travel. Travellers should check with their insurer to make sure that their policy meets their needs. In particular, travellers should seek advice from their insurer on what type of circumstances and activities are the subject of exclusions in their policy.

USA Travel Alerts

Crime rates, including gun related crime, are higher in the larger cities, such as Detroit, New Orleans, New York City, Los Angeles and Washington DC. Tourists are often targeted for crimes such as pick-pocketing and theft, particularly on transportation systems in major cities.

Consular Information Sheets and Travel Warnings also are available on the Consular Affairs Internet home page: http://travel.state.gov. Consular Affairs Tips for Travelers publication series, which contain information on obtaining passports and planning a safe trip abroad, are on the Internet and hard copies can be purchased from the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, telephone: 202-512-1800; fax 202-512-2250.

Travelers can check the latest health information with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta, Georgia. A hotline at 877-FYI-TRIP (877-394-8747) and a web site at http://www.cdc.gov/travel/index.htm give the most recent health advisories, immunization recommendations or requirements, and advice on food and drinking water safety for regions and countries.

Foreign visitors with long term travel plans are urged to register their travel plans with your country Embassy or Consulate in Washington DC.

Visit the Transportation Security Administration for global airport safety and terrorism reports. Always be vigilant and report any suspicious person or package to local authorities or airport security. Sign up to receive U.S. Department of Homeland Security/TSA critical travel alerts.