Poulsbo is a quaint scandinavian town near Seattle.
Poulsbo is 1.5 hours from Seattle across Puget Sound. Take the Seattle to Bainbridge Island Ferry (35 minutes) then drive 20 minutes northwest to get to Poulsbo.
Stroll along the boardwalk at the scenic waterfront, explore restaurants and shops along vibrant Front Street, or visit the touchpools full of starfish at the free SEA Discovery Center.
The Poulsbo Viking Fest takes place in May each year with Norwegian costumes, food and craft booths, a viking village, music and parades.
Poulsbo is a town rich in Scandinavian heritage, founded in the late 1880's by Norwegian immigrant Jorgen Ellison. He was soon joined by other family members attracted by the snow-capped mountains and waterways reminiscent of their homeland. This Scandinavian heritage is clearly evident in Poulsbo's architecture and shops.
10 best things to do in Poulsbo
1. Explore shops and restaurants along Front Street.
Explore art galleries, antique shops, scandinavian bakeries, specialty shops and fine restaurants along Front Street at Poulsbo. Sluys Bakery is great for a sweet treat, and has been around since the early 1900s, or enjoy a delicious meal at an Italian restaurant with woodfired pizza at Sogno di Vino. Burrata Bistro is an another great Italian restaurant, and Paella Bar is perfect for tapas.
The Green Light Diner is fantastic for families, with a vintage soda fountain and kids' menu.
Tizley's Europub is next door to Sluys Bakery, and is a fun place to eat, serving European food, beer and cocktails.
Explore dozens of shops in Poulsbo, like Liberty Bay Books.
2. Enjoy waterview dining.
The relaxed Brass Kraken Pub is on the Poulsbo waterfront, overlooking the marina with a large view deck. The Loft is next door, and serves delicious seafood and tacos in a loft-like space.
Slippery Pig Brewery also has views of the water from an outdoor patio.
3. Touch starfish at the SEA Discovery Center.
The FREE SEA Discovery Center has touch-tanks for kids, with brighly colored starfish and sea anemones. Check hours.
4. Stroll along the beautiful Liberty Bay Waterfront Park.
Walk along the boardwalk at Poulsbo past three marinas, and savor gorgeous water and mountain views.
5. Rent a kayak to explore the pristine waters of Puget Sound.
Hire a kayak from the Olympic Outdoor Center at Poulsbo.
6. Visit the Heritage Museum at Poulsbo.
Visit the tiny museum at Poulsbo City Hall (200 Moe Street), to learn about the rich cultural history of this town. Check hours.
7. Stop by the Poulsbo Maritime Museum.
The small Poulsbo Maritime Museum (19010 Front Street) documents the maritime history of Poulsbo, including fishing fleets, tour boats and more. Check hours.
8. Step inside the Martinson House Museum.
Experience the life of an early 1800's Poulsbo family inside the Martinson cabin (Viking Way). Check hours.
9. See a farm full of alpacas.
Visit the 15-acre Sawdust Hill Alpaca Farm, 10 minutes north of Poulsbo, and have your photo taken with llamas and alpacas.
10. Drive to a cool Naval Museum.
The nearby Naval Undersea Museum in Keyport is also a must-see, with fascinating torpedo and missile exhibits.
11. Catch at show at the Jewel Box Theater.
See live music and plays at the community run Jewel Box Theater, in a cosy, intimate space. The theater is also steps away from Poulsbo's best restaurants, making for a great night out.
Other nearby attractions.
- Port Gamble - 10 miles north
- Bainbridge Island - 12 miles south
- Point No Point Lighthouse - 17 miles north
- Bremerton - 19 miles south, with the USS Turner Joy warship to tour, and a naval museum.
- Fort Flagler - 34 miles north
- Port Townsend - 35 miles north
- Fort Worden - 36 miles north
- Dungeness Spit - 52 miles northwest
- Olympic Game Farm - 52 miles northwest
- Hurricane Ridge - 79 miles northwest