Washington - Abbey Travel, Ireland


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Welcome to Washington


Washington State, in the north-western extremity of the United States bordered by Canada and the Pacific Ocean, offers a unique opportunity for visitors to blend the fun of a vibrant city vacation with an exciting wilderness experience, all within a relatively short distance of each other.

In the scenically set young city of Seattle, hugging the shores of the Puget Sound, high-tech attractions both educate and entertain at the foot of the city's famous landmark, the soaring Space Needle. It is just a step from the waterfront of this dynamic metropolis onto a ferry, which transports you to the wild windswept Pacific beaches, or the emerald green islands of the Sound.

Travel inland to explore national parks, three within easy reach of Seattle, most set around the peaks of the volcanic Cascades Mountains and sporting forests, rivers, lakes and glaciers. In summer the green western wilderness areas draw thousands of hikers, climbers and cyclists, while in winter the skiers head for the slopes.

The north-eastern part of the state, across the barrier of the Cascades Mountains, is desert-like with warm, dry air and a landscape befitting the gateway to the Rocky Mountains. The southeast is carpeted with wheat fields and dotted with historic towns while the central Columbia River Plateau is a rugged area, sculpted by glaciers and ice age flooding, characterised now by wheat fields, lakes and orchards.

Washington is a diverse and beautiful state that can truly claim to offer 'something for everyone'.

Information & Facts


The climate in Washington varies across the state from east to west, and the state is divided both geographically and climatically by the Cascade Mountain range. The western part of Washington tends to be mild and humid, and is one of the world's rainiest areas, while the eastern region is cooler and drier with a more continental type of climate, experiencing hot summers and cold winters. Western Washington often experiences heavy cloud cover, fog and drizzle, and although summers tend to be sunny, they are milder than in the east. In the western area, average temperatures in summer can range from 44°F (7°C) on the slope of the Western Cascade Mountains (which experience some of the heaviest snowfall in the US) to 80°F (27°C) in the foothills, while winter temperatures range from 20°F (-7°C) on the western slopes of the Cascades to 48°F (9°C) along the Pacific coast. The average temperatures in Eastern Washington are more extreme, with summer temperatures ranging from a cool 48°F (9°C) on slope of the Eastern Cascades to 92°F (33°C) in the south-central part of the state and winter temperatures range from 8°F (-13°C) in the northeastern Cascades to 40°F (4°C) on the southeastern plateau. Rainfall in Seattle is usually heaviest from October to March.

English is the most common language but Spanish is often spoken in south-western states.

The US Dollar (USD) is the unit of currency and is divided into 100 cents. Only major banks exchange foreign currency. ATMs are widespread and credit cards and travellers cheques are widely accepted. Travellers cheques should be taken in US Dollars to avoid hassles. Banking hours are Monday to Friday 9am to 3pm.

GMT ?8 (GMT ?7 from March to November).
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