Recently, I volunteered at the Visit Yakima booth at the Downtown Farmers Market.

We had many locals who stopped by the booth to say hi and see what pamphlets we had.

One person looked me dead in the eye and asked me for suggestions of things for their visiting family and friends to do while they were in town for a week.

I froze like a deer in headlights! Normally, if someone had asked me a question like that, I could rattle off a bunch of stuff, but since I felt on the spot I drew a blank.

I was so embarrassed that I couldn’t think of more to suggest than visiting the Flight Museum at McCallister Airfield!

Fortunately, I was able to recover quickly and gave them a great list, if I say so myself. I want to share some of that list with you that way, the next time you have some friends and family visiting the Yakima Valley from out of town, you’ll have some fun things in mind to tell them.

According to a 2023 annual report given by John Cooper, President and CEO of Yakima Valley Tourism, around 2.4 million people visited Yakima in 2023.

Around 69,000 of those visitors came to town for a convention of some sort, which means there are literally millions of people looking for something to do while they’re here.

I think it’s cool that the Visitors & Convention Center team advertises in Wine Enthusiast, Travel Awaits, and other travel-related media to invite visitors to come to the Yakima Valley.

7 Fun Things for Your Visiting Friends to Do When They Come to Yakima


1 . Museums:

  • Yakama Nation Cultural Museum
  • Flight Museum
  • Yakima Valley Museum
  • Central WA Ag Museum
  • Larson Art Gallery


2 . Restaurant Tourist Traps:

  • Miner’s Drive-In
  • Los Hernandez Tamales


3 . Agricultural Tourism:

  • U-Pick Farms
  • Wineries, Breweries, and Distilleries
  • Downtown Yakima Farmers Market


4 . Outdoor Activities:

  • Arboretum
  • Yakima Sportsman RV Park
  • White Pass Ski Resort
  • YMCA & Rotary Aquatic Center
  • High Steppe Rock Climbing
  • Yakima Family Fun Center (formerly Meadowbrook Family Fun Center) for batting cages, go karts, bumper boats, VR gaming, and arcade ticket games
  • Outdoor Yoga
  • Cowiche Canyon Conservancy
  • Pickleball, Disc-Golf, and Virtual Reality Golf
  • Floating the river
  • White Water Rafting up at Rimrock


5 . Live Entertainment:

  • Legends Casino Hotel
  • Yakima Symphony
  • Capitol Theatre
  • Yakima Sundome & State Fair Park Events Center
  • Warehouse Theatre
  • Boxx Art Gallery


6 . Festivals:

  • Downtown Summer Nights
  • Fresh Hop Ale Festival
  • Central WA State Fair
  • Yakima Taco Fest
  • Chinook Fest
  • Hop Country Music Festival
  • Moxee Hop Festival
  • Naches Sportsmans Days
  • Toppenish Rodeo
  • Tieton Holiday Craft & Antique Bazaar
  • Yakima Quilt Show (coming in 2026)
  • Concerts in the Park at Franklin Park


7 . Shopping

  • Inklings Bookshop
  • Valley Mall
  • Spas
  • WestPark Shopping Plaza
  • Grocery Stores (like Rosauer’s, Fiesta Foods, Wray’s Thriftway, Grocery Outlet, Safeway, Mercado de Yakima, Walmart, Target, and Fred Meyer)



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