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15 Fun & Best Things to Do in Walla Walla, Washington

15 Fun & Best Things to Do in Walla Walla, Washington

Saying “Walla Walla, Washington” makes for a great conversation starter. But this charming little city is far more than just a fun phrase — it happens to be packed with everything a foodie and wine lover’s heart could desire. Wine tasting is merely one of many things to do in Walla Walla, but it’s a big thing — the city has been named the top wine destination in the country for the last three years in a row by USA Today. 

But even if you go for the wine, you’ll want to stay for the fascinating places steeped in history, stunning nearby nature, top-tier restaurants, and one of the best farmers’ markets on the planet (thanks to the abundance of crops grown nearby).

Depending on the time of year, you may even be tempted to stick around for a hot air balloon ride or play a few rounds of golf while surrounded by rolling hills. One thing is for sure, Walla Walla is small, but it is never dull.

Walla Walla gave us actor Adam West, those telltale sweet onions, and friendly locals…in fact, it’s known as “the town so nice, they named it twice.” In reality, its unique name comes from the Nez Perce tribe, and it means means “running waters” or “valley of waters.”

It’s a perfect name for an area where several rivers flow across the valley into the Walla Walla River, eventually joining the Columbia River. The indigenous people told Lewis and Clark that the place was called “Wallah Wallah.” 

The area soon turned into a French Canadian fur trading post, earning it the name “Frenchtown.” You’ll see odes to the area’s indigenous history, fur trading past (especially in the Frenchtown red wine blend at L’Ecole No 41. winery), and sinister stories all over town and in its multiple museums.

But while it always pays homage to its history, Walla Walla is redefining itself as a premier food and wine destination of choice for anyone in the Pacific Northwest and beyond. If you’re planning a romantic escape, a girlfriend’s getaway, or a family vacation, you’ll have all kinds of options for your itinerary.


  • Most significant landmark – Whitman Mission National Historic Site
  • Best park – Pioneer Park 
  • Best free activity – Downtown Farmers Market 
  • Best activity for kids – Children’s Museum of Walla Walla 
  • Best activity for adults – The 120 wineries to choose from  
  • Best food – Hattaway’s on Alder 
  • Best nightlife – Green Lantern Tavern
  • Best…

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