Port Townsend is on Wash. 20, off U.S. 101 in the northeast corner of the Olympic Peninsula. The Hood Canal Bridge, which connects the Kitsap Peninsula with the Olympic Peninsula and is on the route from Seattle to Port Townsend, sometimes closes due to high winds; if you want to be certain that it's open, call tel. 800/419-9085.
Washington State Ferries (tel. 800/843-3779 or 888/808-7977 within Washington, or 206/464-6400; www.wsdot.wa.gov/ferries) operates a ferry between Port Townsend and Keystone (on Whidbey Island). The crossing takes 30 minutes and costs $8.90 to $11 for a vehicle and driver, $2.60 per passenger (discounted fares for seniors and youths). At press time, however, the car-ferry service had been temporarily discontinued for maintenance, and it's uncertain when, or if, the service will be resumed. Check on the availability of the car-ferry service before finalizing any plans involving this ferry route.
From late March to early October, passenger-boat service between Port Townsend and Friday Harbor (in the San Juan Islands) is offered by P.S. Express (tel. 360/385-5288; www.pugetsoundexpress.com), which will also carry bicycles and sea kayaks. One-way fares are $50 to $53 for adults and $35 to $43 for children; round-trip fares are $63 to $73 for adults and $45 to $49 for children.
Contact the Port Townsend Chamber of Commerce Visitor Information Center, 2437 E. Sims Way, Port Townsend, WA 98368 (tel. 888/365-6978 or 360/385-2722; www.ptguide.com).
Because parking spaces in downtown Port Townsend are hard to come by on weekends and anytime in summer, Jefferson Transit (tel. 800/371-0497 or 360/385-4777; www.jeffersontransit.com), the local public bus service, operates a shuttle into downtown Port Townsend from a park-and-ride lot on the south side of town. Jefferson Transit also operates other buses around Port Townsend. The fare is $1.25.
As a tourist town, Port Townsend schedules quite a few festivals throughout the year. In May, the town celebrates its Victorian heritage with the Victorian Festival (tel. 360/379-0668; www.victorianfestival.org). The end of July brings the Centrum's Jazz Port Townsend (tel. 360/385-3102; www.centrum.org). The Wooden Boat Festival (tel. 360/385-3628; www.woodenboat.org), the largest of its kind in the United States, is on the first weekend after Labor Day. To see inside some of the town's many restored homes, schedule a visit during the Homes Tour (tel. 888/365-6978 or 360/385-2722; www.ptguide.com/homestour), on the third weekend in September. During the Kinetic Sculpture Race (www.ptkineticrace.org), held the first weekend in October, outrageous human-powered vehicles race on land, on water, and through a mud bog. The Olympic Music Festival (tel. 206/527-8839; www.olympicmusicfestival.org), held nearby in an old barn near the town of Quilcene, is the area's most important music festival. This series of weekend concerts takes place between mid-June and mid-September. Also in September, there's the Port Townsend Film Festival (tel. 360/379-1333; www.ptfilmfest.com).
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.