Ultimate Travel Guide to Soap Lake [2020 Version]
The healing powers of Soap Lake in Grant County, Washington, have drawn travelers to its shores for decades. The Native American tribes that once populated the area regarded it as a sacred body of water, thanks to its purported medicinal abilities.
Although the lake remains a significant attraction for tourists, the quaint town also boasts a long list of popular activities! To see what we mean, check out this ultimate guide to Soap Lake. You’ll learn about the best place to stay, where to eat, as well as all the fun things to do in Soap Lake, WA, during your next visit!
Where to Stay in Soap Lake, WA – A Fun Alternative to Camping
Soap Lake Natural Spa and Resort
A trip through Washington wouldn’t be complete without a cozy, rustic cabin experience. If you find yourself in Soap Lake, put it on your bucket list to stay at Soap Lake Naural Spa and Resort!
This luxury accommodation on the water’s edge with stunning vistas is the perfect getaway to unplug and re-energize your body and mind. Plus, the hotel is right next to the lake and offers easy access to the mineral-rich, health-restoring waters.
On top of its unbeatable access to the magical body of water, the historic wellness destination boasts magnificent facilities. This includes a private Jetted Tub in each of the rooms! For guests looking for holistic restoration, there are activities such as naturally mineralized mud baths, hiking, swimming, and kayaking.
If you want to feel re-invigorated, Soap Lake Resort should be your number one stop.
Places to Eat in Soap Lake, WA
In its former guise as Don’s Restaurant, this local gem became a Soap Lake staple, known for local homegrown comfort foods. The spirit of the original restaurant lives on, but thanks to rebranding and a complete renovation, Lakeside Bistro is now a modern and exciting place to eat.
The innovative kitchen has created a Mediterranean/American-influenced menu, which boasts delicious fresh seafood and fresh ground beef burgers. Plus, the menu changes seasonally to bring you the best of Eastern Washington’s delectable delights.
Enjoy a Night Out at Del-Red Pub
For a lively and fun night out, head to the Del-Red Pub. Those who fancy themselves the next singing sensation can hit the karaoke sessions, which take place on Thursdays, Fridays, and most Saturdays.
Hungry travelers can also take advantage of their food menu, which serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
Things to do in Soap Lake, WA – Fun Activities for All!
Enjoy the Lake
Soap Lake gets its name from the effect from the high mineral content of the water, appearing as if soapy bubbles came ashore.
If you are into mud baths and water soaking, this is an excellent place to try unique spa treatments. To keep the alkalinity and minerals for long enough on the skin, some people apply mud from the lake bottom. It is believed that the mud absorbs toxins, moisture, and oils from the skin.
Whether you would like some kayaks for the family or a stand-up paddleboard for yourself! The calm lake is exceptionally clear and relatively shallow, making it great for kids. When you need a break from the water, take a nap in the resort’s shaded hammocks or relax in lounge chairs on the beach and enjoy the view.
See a Show at Masquers Theater
Known to be one of the oldest rural community theaters in the state of Washington, when you are watching the show, you will be transported back to the days when stage acting was popular.
Masquers Theater, the oldest community theater in Grant County, is a wonderful place to stop for high-quality production. The venue puts on five shows a year, ranging from comedies to drama and everything in between. Take a look at their calendar for upcoming shows!
Drive around a Scenic Byway
Take a fantastic 150-mile ride along the Coulee Corridor Scenic Byway to watch one of the most unique natural landscapes in the United States.
During a 3.5 hour drive, the byway unfolds before you the dramatic effects of ancient disastrous Ice Age floods that caused the formation of coulees and deep gouges.
You will also see the origin of Soap Lake and learn about its unique physical and chemical properties.
Do Some Bird Watching
Soap Lake is surrounded by Washington’s best bird watching sites, home to a diverse bird population due to the abundance of water and habitat. In fact, you may see rare birds of prey, including golden eagles, ferruginous hawks, and turkey vultures.
With smartphone apps to record and share bird sightings, more and more people are joining the re-emergence of birdwatching or birding as a hobby.
Hiking is one of the best things to do in Soap Lake, WA.
Hiking near the peaceful oasis of Soap Lake gives you a perfect glimpse into the sweeping, arid plains of Central Washington. After spending your morning relaxing in the healing, naturally mineralized water of Soap Lake, it’s time to plan an afternoon hike!
Luckily, there are more than enough opportunities to go hiking around Soap Lake, Washington. Whether you’re hiking as a family or going on a solo adventure, keep reading to see our favorite hikes in the breathtaking area surrounding the world-renowned healing destination, Soap Lake!
Here are some of the best hiking spots in Soap Lake:
A visit to the famous Dry Falls will open the imagination of your whole family. Though there is no water anymore, you can easily visualize the once thundering waterfall created by glacial floodwaters. According to geologists, this had been one of the mightiest waterfalls – even larger than the Niagara Falls.
Lenore Lakes Caves
Lenore Lakes Caves is a 1.5-mile hike with over 12,000 years of history, just 8 miles north of Soap Lake. Even though it is a relatively short hike, there are more than enough caves to spend the better part of your day exploring! These caves, created years ago during the Great Missoula Flood, were later used as a shelter for Native Americans. Now, they create the most spectacular views.
During this hike, you will come to a split in the trail. Take the path to the right if you want the safe route. To the left, you’ll notice an equally beautiful path, albeit slightly more dangerous and a little overgrown. Additionally, after this hike, make sure you take an hour or so to check out Dry Falls, practically up the road!
The history of the area is almost as palpable as it is fascinating, and you will find yourself lost in the beauty and in time.
Sun Lakes State Park
Sun Lakes State Park is another beautiful option for a relaxing hike. With 15 miles of walking trails, glistening lakes for boating, and a 400-foot cliff where a large waterfall used to be, there is plenty to see and do here.
In fact, you may need to plan for a full weekend in Sun Lakes State Park to check all of the sights and hikes off of your list! For those who love camping, there are even campsites available for your convenience. However, if you would prefer to stay in a lodge with modern comforts, Soap Lake Resort is the perfect option. These beautifully handcrafted cabins with lakefront access to naturally healing Soap Lake are only a short 20-minute drive away!
Potholes Wildlife Refuge
Potholes Wildlife Refuge offers endless areas for walking and hiking among the dunes and reservoirs. Depending on the weather and season you visit, the reservoirs may look entirely different from the last time that you were there! Some visitors claim that it feels like they’re in a completely new park every time they go.
With dozens of trails all leading to varying landscapes within the park, it’s possible to go on several adventures without ever leaving the area. During this hike, be sure to keep an eye out for the varied wildlife and wildflowers in the area! You may also see lava and sandstone left over from the Ice Age floods.
Ancient, Dusty, and Quincy Lake Trail
Ancient, Dusty, and Quincy Lake trails weave around beautiful lakes and basalt cliffs, creating an unexpected oasis. These trails offer beautiful arid terrain, paired with stunning lakes, small waterfalls, and fields of wildflowers. Each of the three paths is connected at some point or another.
Ancient Lakes trail is 12 miles and starts at the head of Potholes Coulee. It’s flatter and more manageable than some others in the area. This can also be enjoyed by people unable to navigate the more treacherous walks. Dusty Lake trail is 7.6 miles and is narrow, rocky, and covered in brush, but well worth the hike! Quincy lake is 6 miles and leads to a quaint lake surrounded by grassy slopes. There are several spots to pitch a tent and stay the night on any of these trails!
Plan Your Getaway Today!
Now that you know where to stay, where to eat, and the best things to do in Soap Lake, WA, it’s time to plan your getaway!
Start by booking your stay at the luxury Soap Lake Resort today! Doing so will give you access to the delicious Lakeside Bistro and all the fun activities in the nearby area.