Closer to home: Alternative destinations of Washington

An exploration of places in Washington state.



Sarah Balough


While dreams of whisking away to Paris or exploring the rainforests of the Amazon may be farfetched for many students at Pierce College Puyallup, the experience of such places does not have to be postponed. Truthfully, such experiences on a different level can be experienced in Washington state during the summer.

In the moored countryside of England, Stonehenge has come to exemplify the nation’s past of pagenistic ritual and mystical ancient history. As fog blows into the moor the iconic site has become a gothic vacation destination. As one of the most famous sites in the world, Stonehenge is the remains of a ring of standing stones set within earthworks.

The middle of this site houses the most dense complex of Neolithic and Bronze Age monuments in England, including several hundred burial mounds. Archaeologists believe it was built anywhere from 3000 B.C to 2000 B.C, however, a more recent Stonehenge can be viewed in Washington state.

In Maryhill, Wash., stands another Stonehenge, one with a different and well understood history. The town of Maryhill is named after the wife and daughter of regional icon Sam Hill, who envisioned a community of closely linked families after the turn of the 20th century. The Stonehenge of Maryhill is a monument to the dead of World War I, especially those from Klickitat County.

The monument was intended to express the needless sacrifice of human life in modern warfare. This was based on his views of the ancient Druids sacrifices of human lives as needless and inhumane.

Like the historical landmark of the English Stonehenge other European nods of culture have erected themselves in Washington state.

The town of Leavenworth was founded in 1892 and was build originally for the purpose of lumber movement along the railway tracks. With the decline in the lumber industry in 1962 the struggling town turned to the idea of morphing the town into a mock Bavarian village to revitalize its economy. This Bavarian town is reflective to that of any traditional Austrian or German Bavarian township.

While recognizable as the most traveled winter destination for those in search of skiing, Snoqualmie Pass is reflective of one particular destination of Europe.

Nestled between the borders of France and Spain, the country of Andorra is one of Europe’s most popular tourist destinations for both the summer and winter. Known for its several major ski resort, the country is more recognizable as a skiing destination that a political entity.

During the summer its alpine climate serves best for hiking and other outdoor activities and in the winter it is renounced for its both challenging and gentle slopes provided by the mountainous regions extending from southern France.

This destination is reflective of Mount Rainier and its surrounding areas.

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Closer to home: Alternative destinations of Washington

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