Within easy reach of Goldendale, you’ll find plenty of unique experiences. The highlight of your stay will be the Maryhill Museum. The Maryhill is a truly would class museum set on 6000 acres overlooking the Columbia Gorge.
The nearby Columbia Hills State Park offers a completely different art experience, pictographs and petroglyphs along the scenic Temani Pesh-wa Trail. For a change of pace, you’ll find four Columbia Gorge wineries are also located on sr 14, near Goldendale. On your drive home, don’t miss the WWI Stonehenge Memorial. Built as a scale model of Stonehenge, it’s is sure to be a family favorite.
There are organ recitals in the conference center nearly every day that are amazing. There are many old pioneer homes to visit such as the Beehive House, Lyon House and one of Brigham Young’s homes. There is the cobble stone street with rail tracks just outside temple square.
For the genealogy person the Joseph Smith Building has an amazing collection of records and the volunteers will help you get started in finding your roots. At evening the lights of the Temple Square are peaceful and one can wander and site on a park bench watching the fountains.
Most parks have modern and primitive campsites. The modern sites include electricity outlets, water faucet, and access to a bath house. If you go for the primitive site, you will have none of these luxuries and Mother Nature will have to fulfill any of your needs.
As for activities, campers can enjoy hiking, bird watching, boating, swimming, and campfire games. I always like to go different campsites each time so I get a different environment and locale. I just look at an atlas or map and pick a state park within a few hundred miles, do a little research on the area, call and make reservations, and then load up and head out for a cheap and rewarding vacation.
By Viva from California - Here's my cheap San Diego vacation idea. My favorite vacation activity is to visit museums. I have found that the best museums to visit that are not too far away are located in San Diego, California. This city actually has the highest number of museums in this half of the U.S. Balboa Park alone boasts many art and photography museums, as well as science and history exhibits.
It could take several days to get through them all. Also, there are museums to be found in and around Old Town and the State Historic Park areas. They feature relics of the city's original frontier days, with Indian missions and early settlers of this region. It is fascinating to spend hours gazing at the old tools, housewares, clothing, and other items of the past, when people had no conveniences or luxuries.
Further, although the dense city center is what tourists often see most of when they visit Seattle, locals will tell you that the less densely populated neighborhoods outside of the city are where the heart and soul of the city are.
These neighborhoods have many sites and dining opportunities that should not be missed by those visiting the city. These neighborhoods certainly do not require the excellent weather of summer to enjoy the opportunities they present, also.
Among the best opportunities are north of downtown such as stately Queen Anne, with its mansions and thriving business district. Magnolia, just north and west of downtown, has the crown jewel of Seattle’s park system, Discovery Park. It also has Palisades (fine northwest dining) and Chinooks (fresh and simply prepared seafood entrees on the largest fishing port on the West Coast) restaurants, both are highly recommended.
Further north, trendy and bohemian Ballard (La Carta de Oaxaca is recommended for authentic simple and fresh Mexican fare) offers the Ballard Locks and Shilshole Bay Marina for sightseeing. Artsy Fremont offers a number of statues of interest, including a statue of Lenin and a giant troll ‘eating’ a VW bug under the Aurora bridge.
Recreation-wonderland Greelake (try Spud’s wonderful Fish and Chips shack located along Green Lake) offers excellent opportunities for people watching and exercise. In between Greenlake and Ballard, the Woodland Park Zoo is one of the country’s best.
Wealthy Madison Park (Cactus offers excellent Mexican fare) and funky Capitol Hill just east of downtown offer opportunities closer to downtown. To the Southwest, West Seattle offers tremendous views of downtown Seattle regardless of the weather (Salty’s on Alki Beach offers an excellent brunch year-round).
Alki Beach in West Seattle offers Seattle’s best example of a sandy beach. Take advantage of cheap getaways in winter in Seattle, get outside of the urban core and see what the neighborhoods of Seattle have to offer.