PNW road trip itinerary for the solo traveler

Rohan Mathew

Updated on:

Solo travel is all about adventure. Hitting the open road, exploring far-flung locations and discovering new and exciting experiences is what road tripping is all about, and is one of the best ways to travel on your own.

The Pacific NorthWest has adventure in spades, and is absolutely perfect for a solo travel road trip. From the icy north of Vancouver and British Columbia all the way down to the sun-kissed beaches of Big Sur in California, road tripping down the coast is a dream come true. So whether you are road tripping to cruise on your own from Seattle or planning a long weekend in Portland, take a look at this amazing itinerary and consider including a Pacific NorthWest road trip in your holiday plans.


Seattle is a must-visit for any Pacific NorthWest vacation, and a great place to start your road trip. Check out the classics – Pike Place Market, the Space Needle, Chinatown, the Fremont Troll – then head off to discover the beautiful landscapes that surround this excellent city. Puget Sound is perfect for anyone looking for dramatic coastlines and wildlife (the whale watching is incredible!), and Bainbridge Island is well worth spending an afternoon exploring. 

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Olympic National Park

The Pacific NorthWest is full of awesome national parks, but Olympic National Park might be the most epic of them all. Deep, dark forests, jagged snow-covered peaks and gorgeous waterfalls, Olympic National Park showcases some of the best scenery the Pacific NorthWest has to offer. The hiking here is out of this world, and you shouldn’t miss the opportunity to conquer one of the amazing mountains or ridges that define the landscape here. You can see Mount Baker, and right into Canada from the top of Klahhane Ridge!


You could easily spend an entire vacation in Portland, and the only challenge will be trying to fit everything into a short visit! The city is full of fantastic restaurants, bars and coffee shops, and you’ll find it incredibly easy to strike up conversations and make new friends as you take a culinary tour of the town. Don’t miss Stumptown for coffee, Blue Star Donuts, Proud Mary for breakfast, and the aviation-themed delights of The Bomber Restaurant. Once you’ve gorged yourself silly, check out the Japanese Garden, browse the amazing independent bookshops scattered around the city, and finish your day watching the sunset at St John’s Bridge. 

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Crater Lake

Last stop on your Pacific NorthWest adventure is Crater Lake National Park. Hiking around the rim of the lake itself is a glorious experience, offering breathtaking views of the crystal clear water, mountainous crags and lush green forests that make up the landscape of Oregon. You can camp overnight in the National Park, and getting back to nature and away from the stress of day-to-day life here is a magical experience.

When planning a solo road trip, don’t forget to plan ahead, be prepared and always stay in touch with friends and family back home. Exploring the world alone is a wonderful experience, but it always pays to stay safe. Happy travels!