Looking for a great place to hold a family reunion, where RVing and non-RVing family members can camp and enjoy the beauty of the Washington coast alongside one another? Maybe you want to bring friends along on your next RV outing and introduce them to the joys of camping, but your rig isn’t large enough to comfortably bring others.
Then check out Grayland Beach State Park right on the Pacific Ocean, just seven miles south of Westport, Washington, on Highway 105. The park offers large campsites, some with yurts. The unusual thing about this park is the yurt sites are large enough to accommodate the largest of RVs too. Now your friends or family members will have a comfortable place to sleep and store their gear, while all of you enjoy the amenities of a common campsite. Food and fellowship around a crackling campfire, the smell of salt in the air, then ending the day with a dry warm place to retreat in the evening is a surefire method of converting someone to the pleasures of RV camping.
For those not familiar with a yurt, Wikipedia, the online encyclopedia, says it was originally a Turkic word that in modern Turkish means homeland, but in other languages became associated with tent-like dwellings of nomadic people. Traditional yurts consisted of a circular wooden frame with a felt cover made from the wool of sheep, and designed to be moved from site to site by camels or yaks.
Wikipedia adds, “In the United States and Canada, yurts are made using hi-tech materials. They are highly engineered and built for extreme weather conditions. In addition, erecting one can take days and they are not intended to be moved often. These North American yurts are better named yurt derivations, as they are no longer round felt homes that are easy to mount, dismount and transport. North American yurts and yurt derivations were pioneered by William Coperthwaite in the 1960s, after he was inspired to build them by an article about Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas’s visit to Mongolia.”
Since yurts were pioneered by the nomads of Mongolia, they seem like an ideal way to introduce a newbie to the RV lifestyle. After all, many RVers are just modern-day nomads.
At Grayland, yurts are 16 feet in diameter and 10 feet high and can sleep five with bunk beds and a queen-size futon. The yurts are heated, but campers must bring their own linen and blankets. There are restrooms and showers nearby.
The park, which covers 412 acres and has 7,500 feet of beautiful ocean frontage, attracts clam diggers, beachcombers, kite flyers, storm watchers, surf fishermen and those who just like to enjoy a pleasant day at the beach. The park offers an interpretive trail, plus multiple short beach access trails allowing loop hikes to and from the beach. The park was named after Captain Robert Gray, an American sea captain who discovered the numerous harbors now named for him.
The park is open year-round for day use and camping. The park includes 58 full hookup sites, 42 water and electric hookup sites, 16 yurts, four primitive sites, four restrooms and eight showers. Camping loops feature large, paved spaces that will accommodate large RVs. To reserve a campsite, call (888) CAMPOUT. You may stay up to ten consecutive days during summer months and up to 20 days from October through March. It is only an additional $10 per night to add an RV to a yurt rental. Hookups included!
Dave Helgeson and his wife promote RV and manufactured home shows in western Washington. They spend their free time traveling and enjoying the RV lifestyle.
Nikki is a writer and editor for Do It Yourself RV, RV LIFE, and Camper Report. She is based on the Oregon Coast and has traveled all over the Pacific Northwest.