The best-kept secrets are the ones just waiting to be explored, which is particularly true when it comes to traveling. After all, it’s the off-the-wall, stray-from-the-beaten-path places that we live for, long for, where you’re lost and found at the same time. These are the hidden gems that make hometowns unique and special.
The cities within Snohomish County’s communities are no exception with its world of undiscovered beauty. From the streets of downtown to the hillside mountains, a plethora of hidden gems with charm and character can be found all throughout the region.
Antique Shops of Historic Downtown Snohomish
Snohomish’s historic downtown is a treasure trove of small-town charm and rich history in its own right, but the row of charming shops lining First Street may be the area’s best-kept secret. It’s here that you’ll find an antiquarian paradise as the district boasts over 30 antique shops and hundreds of antique dealers, transforming this unique spot of Snohomish into the “Antique Capital of the Northwest.”
Vintage enthusiasts are welcome to explore the dizzying array of farmhouse-chic antique and home décor shops backed up against the city’s still-working waterfront, where it’s not just a hidden gem but a treasure hunt for those rare collectibles and fabulous finds!
Swans Trail Farms
7301 Rivershore Road, Snohomish
Located along the beautiful Snohomish River is a popular destination for outdoor family fun that has become one of the region’s most significant secrets. The second-generation family farm known as Swans Trail Farms has been owned and operated by the Krause family since 1984. Over the years, the farm has become a signature staple of the community, famous for its fresh produce, Fall Festival, and much, much more. The beautiful farm has expanded its operations to include weddings, celebrations, field trips, company picnics, and events.
The cream of the crop, though, pun intended, and star of the show is the Washington State Corn Maze, where guests are invited to explore 12 acres of Washington State history during their fall festival. It is a great way to engage the kiddos the kiddos in geography and history as they navigate a miniature Washington with more than 250 state roads and 400 towns and landmarks, each labeled with historical facts. Altogether, the paths cover 4.5 miles, and since the maze is intended to be an educational adventure, it does not have any dead ends like your typical corn maze.
9906 Airport Way, Snohomish
The sky is the limit with this next hidden gem, but it might not be so hidden with some of its recent rave reviews. Located at Harvey Field, Skydive Snohomish boasts of being “one of the best places in the world to go skydiving,” a title that has since earned it the attention of the Travel Channel and Seattle Magazine.
Hosting about 20,000 tandem skydiving students and experienced skydivers each year, they promise that once first-time jumpers discover that there’s nothing more exhilarating, empowering, and exciting than human flight, they’ll definitely be coming back for more and telling all their friends about this hidden gem within the community.
Snohomish Aquatic Center
516 Maple Avenue, Snohomish
X marks the spot of Snohomish’s aquatic hidden treasure, Snohomish Aquatic Center. The 52,000 square foot state-of-the-art facility owned and operated by the Snohomish School District features a competition pool with a dive area, recreation pool, hot tub, spray-play area, zero-entry area, lazy river, and a 151-foot long “splashtacular” waterslide.
However, the facility’s indoor surf simulation machine, FlowRider, is the main attraction. These water contraptions are typically found on cruise ships and water parks all over the country, but there are only two in Washington, and one is right here in Snohomish! The FlowRider is said to be an experience that is sort of a mix between snowboarding, skateboarding, and wakeboarding, and this one-of-a-kind experience is a must-do in Snohomish.
DoodleBug Sportz Outdoor Paintball Park
9600 115th Avenue SE, Snohomish
They’ll be a target on your back at Snohomish’s next hidden gem but don’t worry, it is all in the name of fun and games! DoodleBug Sportz Outdoor Paintball Park has been trending on your local TikTok, where they’ve been getting peoples’ adrenaline pumping, all while having a blast with others.
In the process, they’ve been creating unforgettable adventures and developing teamwork, communication, and leadership. The family-fun center of 15 acres of outdoor paintball fun specializes in introducing first-time paintball players to paintball through their Open Sessions and Private Paintball Party options.
Snohomish Valley Golf Center
8511 Marsh Road, Snohomish
This next hidden gem isn’t quite where you typically might think it would be. Instead of being seaside or nestled within the hills, the Snohomish Valley Golf Center sits among fields and farms of the Snohomish Flats beside Marsh Road. The family-owned and operated venture has been a favorite of local golfers since its start in 2001.
It has since grown into a full-fledged activity zone complete with a driving range, mini golf, a 10,000-square-foot practice green, a pro shop, a restaurant, and even an ice rink during winter. Even if you don’t play the sport, the magnificent views and quality time with the family still make the golf course worth visiting.
The Reptile Zoo
22715 US Highway 2, Monroe
The Reptile Zoo in Monroe is a particularly egg-cellent hidden gem within the Snohomish community. Home to over 85 species of reptiles, the zoo provides a unique opportunity to get up close and personal with exotic reptiles from across the globe, with one of the most extensive collections of these cryptids on display in the Pacific Northwest.
In addition, the Reptile Man who runs the facility also presents live animal demonstrations all over the area and at the zoo. These shows last anywhere from 30 to 40 minutes. During this time, he talks about 8 to 12 reptiles from all over the world and presents them before a live audience to not only entertain them with a show but also educate them on these remarkable animals.
These are just a few hidden gems within the Snohomish County region, each further enhancing the region’s charm and character. It is a special place to live, work and play, and as such, it’s a treasure to experience.