Soap Lake

It’s no secret that the Pacific Northwest is a treasure trove of amazing natural sites and interesting cities. However, when most people think of this region, they often picture the rugged coastlines of Oregon or the rain-drenched forests of Western Washington. Eastern Washington, with its unique landscapes and diverse attractions, remains a less explored area in the PNW – but it’s about to become your favorite destination.

With a home-on-wheels, you can dive headfirst into this adventure. We’re giving you the best tips and places to visit on your road trip across Eastern Washington. So buckle up, let’s hit the road!

Plan Before You Go

Before you venture out, you’ll want to make sure your RV is in top-notch condition before hitting the road. Check for any maintenance issues and don’t forget the necessary supplies and backups – water, fuel, propane, spare tire, and food.

As long as you booked one of our units, this isn’t something you have to worry about.

No matter how you’re making your trip, you’ll want to make reservations in advance – especially during peak season. Many RV-friendly campsites in Eastern Washington get filled up fast, so ensure you have a spot secured. And remember, weather in the Pacific Northwest changes fast so you’ll want to keep an eye on the weather, and have a backup plan in case it rains.


From Soap Lake To Grand Coulee Dam

Our journey kicks off where Eastern Washington begins, at a unique mineral nestled in the heart of the state called Soap Lake. Soap Lake owes its fame to the rich mineral content of its water, believed to possess healing properties. The lake’s lunar-like landscape and the quiet tranquility it offers make it a perfect starting point for our journey.

The other reason for starting at Soap Lake, is that it offers an amazing drive full of interesting places along the way to Grand Coulee Dam…

Dry Falls

But first, you’ll want to drive northwest from Soap Lake to see the remains of what used to be the world’s largest waterfall dwarfing even Niagara Falls… Dry Falls is an ancient waterfall that stretches an incredible 3.5 miles wide, though it no longer looks like it did during the Ice Age. Now, it stands as a monument to time, an arid canyon where water once roared. The Dry Falls Visitor Center offers an in-depth perspective on the cataclysmic events that shaped this unique landscape.

Steamboat Rock

From Dry Falls, you’ll want to continue towards the towering monument of Steamboat Rock. An enormous basalt butte surrounded by the waters of Banks Lake, Steamboat Rock challenges hikers with its steep ascent but rewards them with spectacular vistas of the surrounding scenery. Its 600-acre plateau is a haven for wildlife, and visitors can often spot marmots, eagles, deer and even the occasional bobcat!

Northrup Canyon

Our last stop on the drive before the dam is Northrup Canyon, a place where the wild heart of Washington thrives. As the only naturally occurring forest in Grant County, Northrup Canyon is home to a wide variety of wildlife and plant species. The three-mile trail through the canyon takes you past an old homestead and cemetery for the pioneers who once tried to make this challenging landscape their home.

Grand Coulee

As the sun sets, you’ll reach Grand Coulee, home to the colossal Grand Coulee Dam, standing as an emblem of human ingenuity, is a marvel to behold. This colossal concrete structure, located on the Columbia River in Eastern Washington, is one of the world’s largest and most powerful hydroelectric projects. The dam is over a mile wide and reaches 550 feet in height, an impressive sight that dwarfs even the great pyramids of Egypt. The dam’s visitor center offers a wealth of information about the construction, operation, and environmental impact of this massive structure. But the real spectacle comes at nightfall, when the dam becomes the backdrop for a brilliant laser light show during the summer nights with colorful lasers that dance across the rushing water.

limestone gardner cave

Scenic Route To Spokane

Fort Spokane

After a night of rest at one for Grand Coulee’s RV parks, you can head east over to Fort Spokane. Located at the juncture of the Columbia and Spokane Rivers in Washington State, Fort Spokane is a historic site established in 1880, it served diverse roles as a military outpost during the frontier era, an Indian Boarding School, and a tuberculosis hospital, each leaving its unique mark on the area. Make a quick stop at the on-site visitor center to get an immersive look into these eras through detailed exhibits of the soldiers, local tribes, and boarding school students.

Beyond its rich history, Fort Spokane offers an enchanting display of natural beauty, nestled within the Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area. This is a great place to stop for some early morning outdoor activities such as camping, boating, fishing, swimming, and hiking, or simple bird watching.

Kettle Falls

Nestled along the banks of the Columbia River in NE Washington, Kettle Falls is a quaint town steeped in history and surrounded by natural beauty. Originally, the location was home to one of the most productive salmon fishing sites in the region for local tribes, but the waterfall known as Kettle Falls was submerged after the construction of the Grand Coulee Dam. Now, the town serves as a gateway to the Lake Roosevelt National Recreation Area, a paradise for outdoor enthusiasts.

Visitors can enjoy a plethora of activities such as boating, swimming, fishing, and camping along the 130-mile stretch of the lake. For hiking and wildlife viewing, the nearby Colville National Forest and Sherman Pass Scenic Byway offer lush landscapes and diverse fauna.

History buffs can learn about the region’s rich past at the Kettle Falls Historical Center, which features exhibits on Native American history, early settlers, and the influence of the Grand Coulee Dam. The town is also in proximity to the Fort Colville site and St. Paul’s Mission, both significant historical sites providing a glimpse into the frontier era.

Gardner Cave

Located just a quarter mile from the Canadian border, but within the boundaries of Crawford State Park, is Gardner Cave. This magnificent natural wonder, known as the third longest limestone cave in the state, offers visitors a unique underground adventure that you won’t find in very many places. Formed over millions of years, the cave boasts an array of spectacular geological features, including stalactites, stalagmites, flowstones, and rimstone pools.

Upon entering Gardner Cave, visitors are enveloped in a subterranean world, where temperatures remain cool throughout the year and a calming silence pervades. Guided tours illuminate the cave’s intriguing features and shed light on its formation, ecology, and history but walking around by yourself is plenty fun on its own. Be on the lookout as you walk around though, because you should be prepared to encounter the cave’s resident bat population, which is harmless but can give you a surprise if you’re not ready.

spokane falls wa

A Trip Into the City of Spokane

Once you’re out of the cave you’ll want to head directly south down U.S. Route 2 to enter the second biggest city in all of Washington. After the calm and peacefulness of the last few days, Spokane’s bustling city vibes provide a refreshing contrast.

As long as there’s no big event going on, you’ll be able to park your RV in Spokane Arena’s overflow parking just 3 blocks from the heart of the city.

Riverfront Park, a legacy of the 1974 World’s Fair is one of the best parks you’ll ever visit. Inside the park you’ll find majestic Spokane Falls, the iconic Great Northern Clocktower, the Loof Carousel, and a trash eating goat that children go absolutely wild for. Plus, you can take a ride on the SkyRide for a panoramic view of the river.

After soaking in the park’s natural beauty, dive into Spokane’s vibrant cultural scene. There’s something for everyone and too much to list here, you’ll really need to look up things specific to your interests… but some of the most common stops include the Northwest Museum of Arts and Culture, with its exhibits showcasing regional history, art, and Native American culture. The Bing Crosby Theater or the Martin Woldson Theater at The Fox for those with a love for performances.

For lunch, explore one of Spokane’s historic districts, like Browne’s Addition or the Davenport District, where beautifully restored buildings house a variety of eateries, trendy boutiques, and local businesses. Spokane is also making its name as a wine destination due to all the local wineries nearby in Walla Walla, so consider visiting one or two of the more than 20 local wineries or tasting rooms for a late afternoon treat.

washington wine walla walla

Wine Country: Walla Walla and Tri-Cities

Before you head back to Seattle to return the RV, travel south to indulge in some world-class wines and dinner. Walla Walla and the Tri-Cities (Richland, Kennewick, and Pasco) region offer some of the best vineyards and wineries in the state. Take a wine tour, enjoy tastings, and learn about the unique wine-making process in this region.

Walla Walla

Start your day in Walla Walla, a city well known for its vibrant wine scene. Begin your morning with a visit to Leonetti Cellar, famed for its rich red wines, particularly Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot. Following this, head to L’Ecole No. 41, a family-owned winery situated in a historic schoolhouse. Here you can taste a wide range of premium wines. You’ll want to get some food in so the wine doesn’t go to your head, so around lunchtime head to the Walla Walla Bread Company for a delicious meal. Post-lunch, continue your wine journey with a visit to Woodward Canyon. Renowned for its Chardonnay and reds, it’s a must-visit for wine lovers.


In the mid-afternoon, embark on the hour-long drive to the Tri-Cities area. Your first stop here should be the Bookwalter Winery in Richland. Enjoy their wine tasting experience in a relaxing atmosphere surrounded by beautiful vineyards. As the day winds down, consider visiting the Terra Blanca Winery on Red Mountain, just a short drive away. End the day by savoring the spectacular views of the Yakima Valley and tasting their excellent range of wines.
Dinner can, and should, be enjoyed at one of the many fantastic restaurants in the Tri-Cities area. And remember to make reservations in advance as many wineries require them for tastings and some restaurants get booked out. Always ensure responsible consumption of alcohol and consider arranging for a designated driver or a local wine tour company to ensure safe travel between wineries.

How Long Should You Plan For An Eastern Washington Roadtrip?

How long this trip will take you depends on how quick you want to move through each destination. We recommend 5 days, but some folks have managed to squeeze it into just 3!

It’s always better to plan for an extra day, just in case you end up falling in love with one of the stops. And with the places you’ll visit in Eastern Washington with this itinerary, there’s a pretty high chance you’ll be glad you planned for an extra day!

Once you’re ready to plan your trip, check out our fleet of professionally maintained RVs so you don’t have to worry about breaking down or not being able to explore all Washington has to offer.