Best Museums Long Beach Washington

Visit the Top 10 Museums on the Long Beach Washington Coast

This is the ultimate guide to the top museums on the Long Beach Washington Peninsula.  From the Ilwaco, Washington Heritage museum with cultural, artistic, and historical artifacts and exhibits dating back centuries to the curiosity of Jake the Alligator Man at Marsh’s Free Museum, this is a comprehensive list of our favorite historical institutions. 

Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center external view


244 Robert Gray Drive

Ilwaco, WA

360 642 3029



This is a fabulous museum 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 Museum, 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.

Astoria Oregon Maritime Museum outdoors at sunset


 1792 Marine Drive

Astoria, Oregon

503 325-2323


The family-fun and kid-friendly Columbia River Maritime Museum is located in Astoria, Oregon just across the Columbia River and about a 20-minute drive from Long Beach, Washington. This fabulous museums explores the history of the Columbia River, 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 in the world, and this renowned maritime museum is not to be missed.

Marsh's Free Museum photo of building

Marsh's Free Museum

Downtown Long Beach, Washington


Marsh's Free Museum is not your typical museum. It is more of a turn-of-the-century curiosity shop housing the world-famous Jake the half-man, half-alligator.  Marsh's has been delighting visitors for deceased 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 shop travelers on a budget and for families with children


115 Lake St SE

Ilwaco, WA 98624


The Columbia Pacific Heritage Museum highlights the history of the Columbia Pacific region with a collection of over 23,000 artifacts, photos, and historic objects. The museum is open Tuesdays through Saturdays.

Fort Columbia State Park Buildings


 Chinook Point

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 year.  This is a family-fun place to visit, and children especially love exploring the old World War II bunkers.

Kite Museum in Downtown Long Beach Washington


 303 SW Sid Snyder Drive

Long Beach, WA 

360 642-4020


The World Kite Museum in downtown Long Beach Washington is one of the best places to visit for the entire family. The museum has one of the most complete collections of Japanese kites outside of Japan, amongst many other wonderful kites from all over the world. From fighting kites to colorful choreography, the history of kites around the globe will delight everyone. 

Cranberry  Museum sign in Long Beach Washington


 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.  So much to learn about the local customs with so little time. For that perfect gift to take home, be sure to stop by the gift shop.  The museum is just a short walk from Handy Hangout Vacation Rental, also located on Pioneer Road.

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, library, and a large collection of Finnish books. You can also cozy up in their cafe and bookstore with a hot cup of 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 history. The museum in South Bend (a great place to stop on your way to Long Beach, Washington from Seattle) has a number of exhibits and unique artifacts. There is also a bookstore with an emphasis on Washington and local history as well as 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 museum, which wants you to get "carried away," has over  50 historic carriages, buggies, and wagons (and counting!) as well as interesting artifacts on display. They do group tours as well as educational tours. This museum is a must-see!

Knappton Cove Heritage Center photos of building


 521 WA State Rte 401

Closed for now due to Covid 19

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



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