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Priest Point Park, Olympia

#3 of 17 in Parks in Olympia
State Park · Hidden Gem · Nature / Park
Priest Point Park is a public park located in Olympia, Washington. Established in 1905, it was the city's first waterfront park, providing access to the Budd Inlet of Puget Sound.
In 1848 Catholic missionaries of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate led by Father Pascal Ricard arrived in the South Puget Sound area, claiming the site as St. Joseph's of New Market. Father Ricard and three other French Canadian priests built two or three simple buildings, including a classroom and chapel, along with an orchard and garden. They operated a school for Indian boys from the local Squaxin Island Tribe. The Nisqually, Puyallup and Snoqualmie used the mission as a trading post. The mission closed in 1860, three years after Pascal left.
In 1905 the land became a city park after plans for a housing development fell through. Volunteers labored to clear trails, install landscaping and re-erect the elaborate two-story Swiss-style chalet donated by Leopold Schmidt of the Olympia Brewery. The building first served as the brewery's pavilion at the 1903-04 Lewis and Clark Exposition in Portland, Oregon, and remained at the park until the early 1950s.
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Priest Point Park reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
201 reviews
  • I have never had a bad experience here at this park. The views are gorgeus. The trails are nice and improved.  more »
  • Priest Point has many trails packed into a beautiful area. Lots of steps and bridges. A couple of trails lead to the inlet, which was still and glass-like on the day we visited. Good for walking...  more »
  • Met some really nice folks on walk. Lots of well maintained picnic porches which can be reserved for one's event. The kiddie play areas are safe and many areas have picnic tables. Loads of nature to experience along well worn trails.
  • Such a serene area. A few picnic tables so get there early to claim a spot. Perfect place for a bday party, lunch with friends or just a hang out spot. Big playground close by for kiddos and beautiful pathways through wooded areas to get you to the beach. It’s quiet and peaceful. Great park for an afternoon outing.

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