Tumwater’s Top 11 Museums: A Guide for History Buffs and Art Lovers

Tumwater, Washington is a vibrant city known for its rich history and culture. With a deep connection to its past, Tumwater is home to several museums that showcase the area’s unique and fascinating heritage.

From the first European settlement in the state to its important role in the timber industry, Tumwater’s museums offer visitors a glimpse into the city’s storied past.

Whether you’re interested in learning about the region’s Native American roots, exploring the history of Olympia Beer, or discovering the impact of the logging industry, Tumwater’s museums have something for everyone.

Come explore the history and culture of this charming city through its diverse and informative museum offerings.

1. Olympic Flight Museum


The Olympic Flight Museum in Tumwater, WA, USA offers a unique experience for aviation enthusiasts and history buffs alike.

Located in a hangar at the Olympia Regional Airport, this museum showcases a collection of old-school aircraft that have played a significant role in aviation history.

Visitors to the museum can explore a variety of vintage aircraft, ranging from World War II era planes to more modern jets.

The museum’s collection includes aircraft from various branches of the military, as well as civilian planes that have made their mark on aviation history.

In addition to the impressive display of aircraft, the Olympic Flight Museum also provides visitors with valuable historical information about the planes on exhibit.

Olympic Flight Museum

From the stories of the pilots who flew these aircraft to the technological advancements that have shaped aviation.

Rating: 9.2

Phone: +1 360-705-3925

Address: 7637 Old Hwy 99 SE, Tumwater, WA 98501, United States

Website: olympicflightmuseum.com

2. Tumwater Falls


Tumwater Falls is a picturesque natural attraction located in Tumwater, WA. The falls cascade down rocks, creating a mesmerizing sight and soothing sound. Visitors can enjoy a leisurely stroll along the trails that lead to different viewpoints of the falls.

The lush greenery surrounding the falls adds to the peaceful ambiance of the area. One of the highlights of Tumwater Falls is the historic Tumwater Falls Park.

The park features picnic areas, benches, and interpretive signs that provide information about the history and geology of the falls.


Visitors can learn about the indigenous people who once inhabited the area and the early settlers who were drawn to the natural beauty of the falls.

Rating: 9.8

Address: Tumwater, WA 98501, United States

3. Tumwater Historical Park


Tumwater Historical Park is a picturesque 17-acre park located in Tumwater, WA, USA.

The park offers visitors a variety of attractions and activities to enjoy, making it a great destination for families, history buffs, and outdoor enthusiasts alike.

One of the highlights of Tumwater Historical Park is the play area, which is perfect for children to run, play, and explore.

With swings, slides, and climbing structures, kids can let their imaginations run wild while parents relax and watch from nearby benches. In addition to the play area, the park is also home to several historical structures that offer a glimpse into Tumwater’s past.

Tumwater Historical Park

Visitors can wander through old barns, cabins, and other buildings that have been preserved, too.

Rating: 9.4

Phone: +1 360-754-4160

Address: 802 Deschutes Way SW, Tumwater, WA 98501, United States

Website: ci.tumwater.wa.us

4. Brewery Park at Tumwater Falls


Brewery Park at Tumwater Falls is a picturesque riverside nature park located in Tumwater, Washington, USA.

Covering 15 acres of land, this park offers a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Visitors to Brewery Park can explore a network of trails that wind through the park, providing opportunities to immerse themselves in nature and enjoy the beauty of the surroundings.

The cascades that flow through the park add to its natural charm, creating a soothing atmosphere for visitors to relax and unwind.


In addition to its natural features, Brewery Park also boasts expansive lawns where visitors can have a picnic, play games, or simply bask in the sun.

Rating: 9.4

Phone: +1 360-943-2550

Address: 110 Deschutes Way SW, Tumwater, WA 98501, United States

Website: olytumfoundation.org

5. Henderson House Museum


The Henderson House Museum in Tumwater, WA is a historical landmark that offers visitors a glimpse into the past. This well-preserved house gives insight into the architecture and lifestyle of the early settlers in the area.

With its quaint decor and antique furnishings, the museum truly takes guests back in time. The Henderson House Museum is a popular destination for history enthusiasts and tourists alike.

The museum offers guided tours that provide detailed information about the house and its former inhabitants.

Visitors can learn about the history of the house, the family who lived there, and the community of Tumwater during that time period. In addition to the historical significance of the Henderson House Museum, the property also boasts beautiful gardens and grounds.

Rating: 6

Phone: +1 360-754-4217

Address: 602 Deschutes Way, Tumwater, WA 98501, United States

6. Puget Sound Estuarium


Located in Tumwater, WA, USA, the Puget Sound Estuarium is an educational marine life center that offers visitors the opportunity to explore the wonders of the sea.

The center is home to a variety of saltwater aquariums filled with fascinating marine creatures, providing a unique and interactive learning experience for visitors of all ages.

As visitors wander through the exhibits, they can admire the beauty of colorful fish, intricate coral reefs, and other marine life found in the Puget Sound region.

The aquariums are carefully curated to showcase the diverse ecosystems that exist beneath the surface of the water, giving visitors a glimpse into the interconnected world of marine creatures.


In addition to the saltwater aquariums, the Puget Sound Estuarium also features interactive.

Rating: 9

Phone: +1 360-918-8412

Address: 309 State Ave NE, Olympia, WA 98501, United States

Website: pugetsoundestuarium.org

7. Schmidt House


The Schmidt House in Tumwater, WA was built in 1904 and features Colonial Revival elements. Visitors can explore the statues and gardens surrounding the house. The house offers tours that provide insight into its history and architecture.

Guests can learn about the significance of the Colonial Revival style and the role the house played in the community. In addition to tours, the Schmidt House also hosts events throughout the year. These events may include workshops, lectures, and cultural celebrations.

Visitors can immerse themselves in the rich history of the house and its surroundings. The statues and gardens on the property add to the charm of the Schmidt House.


Guests can wander through the well-maintained gardens and admire the intricate statues that adorn the grounds.

Rating: 9

Phone: +1 360-890-2299

Address: 330 Schmidt Pl SW, Tumwater, WA 98501, United States

Website: olytumfoundation.org

8. Hands On Children’s Museum


The Hands On Children’s Museum in Tumwater, WA, USA is a center that provides interactive and engaging exhibits and programs for children.

From art to science, kids can explore a variety of hands-on activities that are both educational and fun. With a focus on participatory exhibits, children have the opportunity to learn through play and exploration.

Whether it’s creating art projects or conducting hands-on science experiments, kids are encouraged to use their creativity and curiosity to learn more about the world around them. The museum offers a wide range of exhibits that cater to different interests and ages.


From a water play area to a mock grocery store, there is something for every child to enjoy. The programs are designed to be interactive and engaging, allowing children to actively participate.

Rating: 9.6

Phone: +1 360-956-0818

Address: 414 Jefferson St NE, Olympia, WA 98501, United States

Website: hocm.org

9. WET Science Center


The WET Science Center in Tumwater, WA, USA is a unique museum that offers hands-on activities for kids to learn about the water cycle and its vital impact on life on earth.

Visitors to the museum can engage in interactive exhibits that demonstrate the various stages of the water cycle, from evaporation to precipitation.

Kids can learn about the importance of water conservation and how they can help protect our planet’s most precious resource.

One of the highlights of the WET Science Center is the opportunity for children to participate in fun and educational experiments that showcase the properties of water and how it sustains life on earth.


From building miniature watersheds to creating water filtration systems, kids can get a hands-on experience that makes learning about science engaging.

Rating: 9.2

Phone: +1 360-664-2333

Address: 500 Adams St NE, Olympia, WA 98501, United States

Website: wetsciencecenter.org

10. The Evergreen State College Natural History Museum


The Evergreen State College Natural History Museum, located in Tumwater, WA, USA, offers visitors a unique and educational experience.

The museum showcases a diverse collection of natural history exhibits, including displays on local flora and fauna, geology, and environmental conservation efforts.

Visitors to the museum can explore interactive exhibits that highlight the rich biodiversity of the Pacific Northwest region.

From towering old-growth forests to pristine rivers and lakes, the museum offers a glimpse into the natural wonders that make this area so unique.

One of the highlights of the museum is its collection of fossils, which provide a fascinating look into the prehistoric past of the region.

Visitors can marvel at ancient sea creatures, dinosaurs, and other extinct species that once roamed the land.

Rating: 10

Phone: +1 360-867-7031

Address: 2713 McCann Plaza Dr NW, Olympia, WA 98502, United States

Website: sites.evergreen.edu

11. Crosby House Museum


The Crosby House Museum in Tumwater, WA is a historic site that offers visitors a glimpse into the past. This museum is housed in a beautiful Victorian-era home that has been restored to its former glory.

Visitors can explore the various rooms of the house, each filled with period furnishings and decor. One of the main highlights of the Crosby House Museum is its collection of artifacts and memorabilia from the early days of Tumwater.

From photographs and documents to household items and clothing, these items offer a fascinating look at the daily lives of early settlers in the area.


In addition to the permanent exhibits, the Crosby House Museum also hosts special events and programs throughout the year.

Rating: 8.2

Phone: +1 360-943-9884

Address: 702 Deschutes Way SW, Tumwater, WA 98501, United States


Museums in Tumwater, WA offer a unique glimpse into the history, culture, and art of the region. Visitors can explore a variety of exhibits, artifacts, and interactive displays that showcase the rich heritage of Tumwater and its surrounding areas.

Whether you are interested in the history of brewing, the local flora and fauna, or the experiences of early settlers, Tumwater museums provide a fascinating and educational experience for visitors of all ages.

Take the time to explore these museums and discover the stories that have shaped this vibrant community.

Photo of author

Tony Spadafora

Since 1983, I've been making DC and Philadelphia unforgettable for families and business visitors. Whether it's a family reunion or a corporate breakout seeking something unique, I tailor experiences to your personal perspective. From historical landmarks to hidden gems, I ensure your visit is extraordinary. Trust a professional tour guide with decades of expertise to transform your trip into a memorable adventure. LinkedIn

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