Best Museums Long Beach Washington

Visit the Top 12 Museums on the Long Beach Washington Coast

Exploring the Long Beach Peninsula reveals a treasure trove of historical exhibitions that capture the essence and heritage of the region. Highlights include the Ilwaco Heritage Center, a hub for cultural, artistic, and historical artifacts that span centuries, and the whimsical curiosity of Jake the Alligator Man housed at Marsh’s Free Museum, hese institutions, among others, offer a deep dive into the historical narrative and cultural richness of the area. They stand as a testament to the vibrant history and traditions that are a must-see for visitors. For a journey through time and a glimpse into the unique past of this region, make sure to immerse yourself in these historical sites during your visit to Long Beach, Wa. (Updated: 02/06/24)

Kite Museum in Downtown Long Beach Washington

1. World Kite Museum and Hall of Fame


 303 SW Sid Snyder Drive

Long Beach, WA 

360 642-4020


Downtown Long Beach, Washington, is home to a hidden gem that promises an unforgettable experience for families: a remarkable collection showcasing some of the finest Japanese kites found outside of Japan, along with a diverse array of kites from around the world. This destination offers a fascinating look at the history and artistry of kites, ranging from traditional fighting kites to those designed for vibrant aerial displays. The global story of kites is told through exhibits that captivate visitors of all ages. Don't miss the captivating photos capturing the essence of the kite festivals,a highlight event that paints the sky each year during the third week of August. This spectacle and the museum's collection are a testament to the beauty and diversity of kiting culture, making it a must-visit spot for families seeking a blend of education and entertainment.

Cranberry  Museum sign in Long Beach Washington

2. Cranberry Museum and Demonstration Farm


 2907 Pioneer Road

Long Beach, WA 

360 642-5553


Cranberry harvesting is almost as old as the Long Beach Peninsula itself. Long before pilgrims arrived in 1620, the Native Americans used cranberries with dried deer meat or salmon and melted fat to make a convenience food that could hold for a long time.  There is so much to learn about the local customs and history with so little time. For that perfect gift to take home, be sure to stop by the gift shop.  This institution is just a short walk from Handy Hangout Vacation Rental, also located on Pioneer Road.

Marsh's Free Museum is a family fun favorite place to visit

3. Marsh's Free Museum


409 Pacific Ave,

Long Beach, WA 


Marsh's is more of a turn-of-the-century curiosity shop housing the world-famous Jake the half-man, half-alligator than a historical archive.  Marsh's has delighted visitors for decades with its treasure trove of antiques, curios, vintage photographs, old rifles, swords, drums, and spears, plus much more. The gift shop is one of the best places to buy that one-of-a-kind souvenir.  This is a must-see for travelers on a budget or families with children.  Marsh's is steps from all of our downtown Long Beach WA homes.

Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center external view

4. Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center


244 Robert Gray Drive

Ilwaco, WA

360 642 3029



This is a fabulous center and a must-stop for family fun on the Long Beach Washington Peninsula. Located high above the ocean surf with breathtaking ocean and lighthouse views, there is likely no better view on all of the Washington Coast. If you only have time for one educational stop, this is it. There is a short 1/2 mile hike to the historic Cape Disappointment Lighthouse, past Dead Man's Hollow, and up a short steep hill to the lighthouse. The lighthouses are within two miles our Seaview Vacation Rentals.

Astoria Oregon Maritime Museum outdoors at sunset



 1792 Marine Drive

Astoria, Oregon

503 325-2323


The family-fun and kid-friendly Columbia River Maritime Center is located in Astoria, Oregon, right across the Columbia River and about a 20-minute drive from Long Beach, Washington. This fabulous institution explores the Columbia River's history, from the days of dugout canoes to exemplary exhibits of coast guard rescue missions. The Mouth of the Columbia River is one of the most dangerous passages globally, and this renowned maritime gallery is not to be missed.

Columbia Pacific Heritage Museum has a large collection of old photographs



115 Lake St SE

Ilwaco, WA 98624


The Columbia Pacific Heritage Center highlights the Columbia Pacific region's history with a collection of over 23,000 artifacts, photos, and historical objects. It is open Tuesdays through Saturdays. There is no better place to visit if you are serious about learning more about the local history of the Long Beach Washington Peninsula. Also, see our Historical Sites and Attractions.

Fort Columbia State Park Buildings



Fort Columbia

Chinook, Washington 

360 777-8221


The Fort Columbia Interpretive Center focuses on the fur trade, military community, and exploration of the Columbia. This interpretive center is only open in the summer, but you can visit Fort Columbia Historic State Park any time of the year. This is a family-fun place to visit, and children especially love exploring the old World War II bunkers.

Appelo Archives Center



1056 State Route 4

Naselle, WA 98638

360 484-7103


The archive center is home to displays of the area’s history and heritage. Inside is a genealogy corner, a library, and an extensive collection of Finnish books. You can also cozy up in their cafe and bookstore with a hot coffee.

Pacific County Historical Society Museum photo of the building



1008 W Robert Bush Drive

South Bend WA, 98586

11:00 to 4:00 PM Daily

360 875-5224


The historical society's collection and archives showcase Pacific County's history. In addition, this foundation has several exhibits and unique artifacts in South Bend (a great place to stop on your way to Long Beach, Washington, from Seattle). A bookstore also emphasizes Washington and local history and several local products. 

Photo of a carriage in the museum



 314 Alder Street

Raymond, WA 98577

Open 10:00 am to 4:00 pm

360 942-4150


The Carriage wants you to get "carried away" with over  50 historic carriages, buggies, and wagons (and counting!) and interesting artifacts on display. They do group tours as well as educational tours. This museum makes a great stop from Seattle, WA, to the Long Beach Peninsula.

Knappton Cove Heritage Center photos of building



 521 WA State Rte 401

Naselle WA


Carefully preserved and full of fascinating artifacts from another era, Knappton Cove was once the US Columbia River Quarantine Station, the Columbia River’s “Ellis Island.” Check their season schedule or call to set an appointment.

Willapa Bay Interpretive Center



3311 275th St

Ocean Park, Washington 


Once home to an oyster grower and his family, this interpretive center offers a glimpse into Willapa Bay's oyster industry's history, now almost 150 years old. Artist Nancy Lloyd of Oysterville created the display.