Natural Attractions

Natural Attractions

Roaring falls in the heart of downtown, miles of trails and vistas at Mount Spokane, towering basalt rock formations in Riverside Park, and the Palouse Falls 198-foot waterfall… needless to say, nature lovers will find plenty of attractions to rave about in the Spokane region.

Spokane Falls

From Native American salmon gatherings to the 1974 World’s Fair, nothing speaks to the spirit of our city like the Spokane River Falls. The rapids roar through the heart of Riverfront Park. For a bird’s eye view of the churning waters below take a ride on the Spokane Falls SkyRide gondolas. Bring your camera! You may catch the Falls’ spray break into a rainbow.

Bowl and Pitcher

Just minutes from downtown visitors will find striking towers of basalt rock along the Spokane River. The geological phenomenon, located in Riverside State Park, comes courtesy of a lava flood that occurred approximately 16 million years ago. Fissures in the earth’s surface allowed lava to seep through the earth’s crust and cover the region. The Spokane River later carved the basalt into the unique formations seen today. Riverside State Park features the Bowl and Pitcher rocks in addition to miles of hiking trails and bike paths as well as camping spots. For an adrenaline fueled tour, book a guided raft trip and brave the wild rapids.

Mt. Spokane

One of eastern Washington’s tallest peaks can be found in Spokane’s backyard. Mount Spokane State Park is a 13,919-acre camping park featuring a hundred miles of hiking, biking and horse trails. Come winter the mountain sees over 300 inches of snow and opens for downhill skiing, cross-country skiing, snowmobiling and snowshoeing. The mountain hosts recreational and intrepid nature goers alike and embodies Spokane’s outdoors spirit.

Lake Coeur d’Alene

With 109 miles of shoreline, Lake Coeur d’Alene has enough room for luxury travel and secluded nature excursions. On the Northside an array of boutique shops and restaurants can found around the city’s beautiful beach and the Coeur d’Alene Resort features fine dining, an awarding golf course and a full spa.

Visitors will be astounded by the peaceful serenity of the lake’s southern shores. Home to Heyburn State Park, this portion of the lake is fed by the St. Joe and Coeur d’Alene Rivers. Visitors can stay in cottages, cabins and campsites and enjoy fishing, paddling and motor boating. Bring your bike! The paved Trail of the Coeur d’Alenes spans 73 miles. Pedal all the way to the historic mining town of Wallace, Idaho or enjoy a short sojourn along the lake to Harrison for eats and ice cream.

Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge

A serene untouched pocket of nature can be found forty minutes south of Spokane in Turnbull National Wildlife Refuge. The preserve features 18,217 acres of basalt rock outcrops, ponderosa pines, wetlands and lakes. The immense marshland provides ideal breeding grounds for endangered waterfowl and makes the refuge a paradise for bird watchers.

Palouse Falls

Drive a couple hours through the famous rolling hills of the Palouse…then prepare to have your mind blown! A 198-foot waterfall known as the Palouse Falls crashes through the heart of the desert. The thundering phenomenon is just a short walk on a paved trail from the parking lot. The site also features hiking trails and camping.

Glacial Lake Missoula and Ice Age Floods

During the Ice Age Floods 500 cubic miles of water, or about half the size of Lake Michigan, came crashing through eastern Washington. Much of the region’s natural wonder—from the rolling hills of the Palouse to the dynamic canyons of the Columbia to the area’s striking basalt outcroppings—can be attributed to these cataclysmic floods.