The Tri-Cities is within easy reach of more than 200 wineries offering plenty of fun events, tours and other activities.
Be sure to visit the wineries of the state’s smallest appellation, Red Mountain AVA. Primarily known for its fabulous red grape varieties, Red Mountain is typically Washington’s warmest growing region. For a truly memorable day, tour in a unique way: Red Mountain Trails offers horseback rides through the vineyards, horse-drawn wagon ride wine tastings, and dinner trail and wagon rides that end with a fresh Dutch oven-cooked dinner at sunset in the vineyard. Fruit of the Vine Trolley provides an enchanting and comfortable way to visit some of the most celebrated wineries.
With an exceptional climate, it’s no surprise that golf is one of the most popular sports in the Tri-Cities region of Kennewick, Pasco and Richland. Golfers have numerous course options with reasonable green fees and plentiful tee times. There’s a range of trails for cyclists, from Richland’s leisurely riverfront trail to the Sacajawea Heritage Trail, a 37-kilometer paved loop along the Columbia River that connects the three cities. Hikers head for Badger Mountain and four trails of varying difficulty. Kayaking is practically a year-round sport. Check out the Tapteal Greenway water trail on the Lower Yakima River. Boating on the Columbia River is amazing; rent a pontoon boat for a leisurely ride, or ramp it up with a speedboat rental. Paddleboards are available for rent on the Columbia, Yakima and Snake rivers.
Pedestrian suspension bridge over the Yakima River
Tasting and Feasting
The Tri-Cities is rich in agriculture, and locals know how to savor its bounty. Each of the three cities has a farmers market. There’s no better way to see and sample the fruits, vegetables, breads, baked goods, jams and other goodies of the region. Two Country Mercantile stores, one in Pasco and the other just west of Richland near Badger Mountain, provide an indoor farmers market-style experience. Each week at lunchtime, downtown Pasco’s Food Truck Friday brings all kinds of great aromas and flavors together. There are countless events revolving around food throughout the year. Each September, Pasco’s Fiery Foods Festival brings bold flavors and exciting cultures together for a celebration of food, fun and music.
Autumn scene at a vineyard in Benton City in the Tri-Cities region
Connecting with History
The Tri-Cities is home to a vital chapter of U.S. history: The Manhattan Project, the U.S. Department of Energy’s effort to build the first atomic bomb and end World War II. Tours are available of the Pre-Manhattan Project and the Manhattan Project B Reactor. During the war effort of World War II, Richland grew from a population of 500 to 25,000 in just one year. Visit the Gold Coast Historic District to see the “alphabet houses” of the project’s scientists, technicians, and other personnel and their families.