Certainly, booking an RV rental in Tacoma is the most convenient and rewarding way to explore Washington State’s second-largest city as well as Pierce County. Once known as an industrial hub, Tacoma has transformed itself into a vacation magnet that welcomes visitors from far and wide.
Expect an edgy art scene, museums with intricate exhibits, gorgeous parks, vintage architecture, a robust dining scene, and boutiques with a plethora of treasures. Of course, Tacoma has an astonishing variety of outdoor offerings, ranging from mountain to waterfront pursuits.
In this guide, we will walk you through the best attractions in Tacoma and Pierce County. We will also highlight why our Tacoma RV rentals are outstanding and share some campgrounds to park your accommodation on wheels.
A Few Words on Tacoma
Nicknamed Grit City and The City of Destiny, Tacoma is a vibrant city on the shoreline of Puget Sound. It’s located in Pierce County, Wa, a 30-mile drive south of Seattle, 31 miles north of Olympia, and 93 miles south of Port Townsend. Over 200,000 people call it home.
Top Things to Do in an RV Rental in Tacoma, WA
After you book your Tacoma RV rental, pilot the rig to any of these Grit City attractions.
Point Defiance Park
Steer your camper rental Tacoma to the northernmost tip of the city, and you'll find Point Defiance Park. It’s the second-largest urban park in North America, and it boasts a wealth of outdoor offerings. You’ll find a zoo and aquarium with over 350 animal species from around the world.
Exhibits include cute sea otters, intelligent beluga whales, majestic Sumatran tigers, and imposing Asian elephants. More attractions include a rose garden, numerous walking, and biking trails, a living History museum, a marina, and a dog park.
Museum of Glass
Maneuver your motorhome or trailer rental Tacoma to the downtown area, and you’ll be awe-struck by this museum’s stunning glass artwork. Here, you’ll not only get insights into the art of glassblowing, but also learn about Tacoma’s most famous native son—Dale Chihuly. He was a world-renown glass artist who donated a massive amount of his work to the city.
This contemporary museum also features the works of other creators, and you can watch in-house artists at work in an open amphitheater. Beyond the live demonstrations, make sure you explore the Chihuly Bridge of Glass, which has three massive glass sculptures adorning the walkway. It's also a beautiful spot to catch the sunset.
LeMay - America's Car Museum
Another attraction worth visiting in your Tacoma RV is the American Car Museum. It has a fine collection of classic and modern automobiles on a 165,000 square feet facility. Beyond the exhibits, there’s plenty to keep you occupied, including a ride in a racing simulator, a state farm theater, and a photo car.
Plan your trip around one of their events, and you’ll even have a more exciting time. For instance, on Steam Day Events, you get a chance to design, assemble, and test out your own pinewood derby car and race against other visitors on a full-length Pinewood Derby track.
Tacoma Art Museum
This Tacoma Art Museum is another central part of Downtown Tacoma Museum District. Beyond its eye-catching exterior, it houses over 5,000 pieces that highlight the history of the Pacific Northwest. As you meander through the galleries, you’ll soak in indigenous paintings, sculptures, jewelry, and pottery.
In addition to collections from the region, you’ll find Japanese woodwork, European classics, special temporary exhibits, along with a bigger collection of Chihuly glass art. The museum also hosts several celebrated events that you can participate in.
Those searching for an escape from the fast-paced city environment will be delighted to find Owen Beach. Nestled in Point Defiance Park, this retreat has plenty of things to keep your family entertained. You can swim or kayak, play in the sand and rocks, bask under the sun or take a leisurely stroll on the mile-long beach.
The beach has undergone some upgrades, and it now features a pavilion, whale sculpture play area, easier water access, and safer entry and exits. Moreover, there are new restrooms, an improved boat launch, and ADA-friendly facilities. There’s also ample parking, so don’t hesitate to visit in your RV rental Tacoma.
For an even more relaxed vibe, park your Tacoma camper rental at Wright Park, near the City's Theater District. It’s a 27-acre arboretum with a brilliant collection of native and exotic trees. Enjoy perusing the interpretive information about the 600 different trees.
Other interesting features of the park include a playground, water spray ground, water fountains, swings, basketball courts, picnic tables, a bridge, a charming duck pond, and a restroom. W. W. Seymour Botanical Conservatory is also within the park. It has a distinctive 12-sided central dome. Wander here and marvel at the flower displays.
Foss Waterway Seaport
The best place to learn about the history and culture of the Puget Sound area is at Foss Waterway Seaport. Here, you'll find a 100-year restored building that's built on a dock. This hidden gem will sweep you away with its maritime collections.
Exhibits include historic wooden boats, skeletons of humpback whales, photographs, historical records, and items that showcase the extraordinary connection between the Puyallup tribes and the waterways. Plus, you’ll get a nice view of the bay.
Shopping and Dining
If you’re hunting for a unique souvenir to take back home, Tacoma’s downtown area is where you want to be. There are trendy boutiques, thrift shops, and antique stores. Specifically, Antique Row on Broadway is filled with stores selling forgotten treasures ranging from antique furniture, vintage clothes, and old books to photographs.
Foodies, too, won’t be disappointed. Whether you want to engage your taste buds with Korean fare, seafood, or barbecue, there is an abundance of restaurants serving dishes that will linger on your tongue. Try Asado—an Argentinian-themed steakhouse in the popular 6th Avenue district. Other famous eateries are Lobster Shop, Dirty Oscar’s Annex, and El Gaucho Tacoma.
Nearby Places to Visit in your RV Rental Tacoma
If you’re craving fast-paced outdoor pursuits, rent an RV in Tacoma and take it beyond the city limits. Here, you’ll find beautiful natural settings with plenty of things to do and see that will get your heart racing. Here are some top places to explore after you rent an RV in Tacoma area.
Less than 45 minutes outside Tacoma, you’ll find a 723-acre wildlife park. It’s home to over 100 native animals, including a cast of tooth-and-claw wildlife. Some of the animals that awe visitors are bears, wolves, cougars, bison, elk, bighorn sheep, moose, caribou, and deer. There is a nature-themed play area where kids can play in a miniature log cabin, climb on giant nets, and build forts.
Pioneer Farm Museum & Ohop Indian Village
If you want to escape to another century, navigate your RV rental Tacoma, WA to Pioneer Farm Museum & Ohop Indian Village. At the farm, you'll experience homesteading as it happened in the 1880s. At the Native American village, you'll learn native activities such as target shooting with a bow and arrow, braiding leather, making an arrowhead, or chipping out a canoe.
Mount Rainier National Park
Mt. Rainier National Park, at 14,410 feet, is the most glaciated peak in the contiguous U.S.A, and is about 40 miles southeast from Grit City. The park offers loads of day hikes ranging from gentle 20-minute walks to five-hour treks. There are 5 major rivers, wildflower meadows, incredible wildlife, and ancient forests waiting to be discovered.
Olympic National Park
An hour and a half outside Tacoma lies Olympic National Park. It has everything an outdoor lover relishes, from jaw-dropping scenery, peaks to climb, untamed rivers to raft, moss-covered forests to weave through to gorgeous beaches with tidal pools. You can hike, bike, fish, star gaze, kayak, chase waterfalls, or go whitewater rafting.
Why Book Our RV Rentals in Tacoma?
Renting a camper with Outdoors RV Rentals has plenty of benefits. Here are just a few perks of renting from our family-owned and operated company:
● We Have Different Types of RVs - Whether you want an RV you can drive or a towable, we have different selections for you and we own them all. Our lineup of RVs for rent in Tacoma includes 3 different motorhomes, 2 different trailers, 4 different campervans, and a sky-rise tent camper car.
● Our RVs are Off-Grid Capable - Impressively, all our camper rentals Tacoma come with boondocking equipment. Expect to find systems such as solar panels, lithium batteries, portable solar lithium generators, and onboard generators. These features will power you when you are unable to plug-in.
● All Our Tacoma RVs are Meticulously Maintained - Our fleet of Tacoma RV rentals is professionally serviced, and each camper is always in immaculate shape. This ensures they deliver a smooth drive and memorable camping experience. Each one also comes with supplies you’ll need to make the trip more comfortable, plus you can rent extras like chairs, beddings, and kitchen kits.
● Proximity to Attractions - Instead of renting an RV at your hometown and having to drive it all the way to Grit City, book our Tacoma RV online, fly into Seattle-Tacoma International Airport, and pick up your camper. From Tacoma, almost all the major attractions are within a 1 ½-hour driving range.
● Great Customer Support - Expect fantastic customer support throughout the entire rental journey. We are always open and ready to answer any questions or concerns before, during, and after your rental. Check out our FAQs section to get answers to the most common questions we get.
Best Places to Camp in Your RV Rental Tacoma
Wondering where to stay when exploring Tacoma and its surroundings? Here are a few great options.
● Rainbow RV Resort - Situated in Eatonville, WA, in Tanwax Lake, just 29 miles outside Tacoma. It has 30 campsites.
● Majestic RV Park - Sits 7 miles outside Tacoma in Puyallup, WA, and has 115 sites.
● Mounthaven Resort - If you’re looking to explore Mt Rainier, Park your rental RV Tacoma here. It’s 58 miles outside Grit City and just 1/2 mile from the NP. There are 16 RV sites in a wooded setting.
Rent an RV Rental in Tacoma Today!
With a wheeled home, it’s easy to explore The City of Destiny and beyond. But units often book out months in advance, so don’t wait until the last minute to book your camper rental in Tacoma. Reach out to us today and discover our fantastic Tacoma RV rental deals.
Stephen is an outdoor and RV writer who enjoys creating content that inspires more people to get outside. When he’s not typing, you can find him hiking, biking, reading, and trying to stay in shape.