Apple Picking and UPick Farms in and around Seattle, Washington

The late summer and early fall is apple picking time at the Washington apple orchards and u-pick farms and pumpkin patches surrounding the city of Seattle. Did you know that Washington State is the country’s Apple Capital? It’s true, and an estimated 56% of all apples consumed in the U.S. are grown in Washington. The state is also well known for its cherries.

Handful of apples
Washington state is the country’s largest apple producer. Photo c. Natalie Collins, Unsplash

The best apple picking around the Seattle metropolitan area is in King, Kitsap, and Snohomish counties. So whether you are looking to pick fruit, go on a hayride, or buy fresh baked goods, Family Travel Forum has you covered.

Before you shell out $20 for an empty bushel bag or up to $5 per pound, keep in mind that different varieties are better suited for different purposes. Honeycrisp, Idared, Red Delicious, Fuji, Macintosh, Empire, and the Jonathon are great for eating. For sauces or pies, use the Cortland, Mutsu, Golden Delicious, or Russet instead. If lavender appeals more, this new crop is also plentiful at many of these farms.

For a complete guide to apple-picking orchards and farms across the country, check out the FTF Guide to Top U-Pick Farms in the US.

Apple-Picking in the Seattle Metro Area

There are several PYO Washington apple farms, fruit orchards, and pumpkin patches located in Seattle’s surrounding counties. Skipley Farm, just a half-hour’s drive north in Snohomish, is one of the more interesting ones because it offers guided farm tours led by naturalists as well as horticultural classes. A working farm and plant nursery (especially edible plants), feature organic produce and apples.

Among their 2,000 dwarf apple trees, there are 320 varieties. Because there’s fruit ripening all the way from July through October, Skipley is also a fun U-Pick destination with smaller children. Depending on the season, there are also many other fruits and berries to harvest; in fact, they’ve begun growing trees and bushes of Serviceberry, Aronia, Autumn Olive, Thimbleberry, Elderberry and Cranberry. September is the best month for apple varietal choice, but some species are available to pick in August and into mid-October.

Need an inexpensive rental car for apple picking?

The Farm at Swan’s Trail is a much livelier option in Snohomish, with tons to do. Check out the 55-acre pumpkin patch open from late September to Halloween, which is free. PYO apples have been picked by July, but there’s access to the early bird breakfast or hot food. Activities that require a paid wristband include a Washington State corn maze, petting farm, hay pyramid, jumping pillow, wagon rides, pig races, and more, open daily in the fall.

Fun Apple Picking Farms around Washington

Will you drive two hours to Whatcom County, just outside Bellingham? If so, then Bellewood Farm & Distillery is the farm of choice, with over 25,000 trees of 15 varieties under cultivation. Their focus is on the farm store, distillery (fruit brandy, vodka, and gin), gift shop, and cafe, selling locally grown wines, hard ciders, gourmet cheese, and seasonal fruit. This is the largest apple and pear orchard in Western Washington.

Peruse which part of the extensive UpPick orchards you want to pick first. Look for Honeycrisp and Tsugaru apples in mid-September, plus several other varieties at the farm store. There’s a corn maze, a small train, and other free activities. Check their online calendar for live music performances on summer weekends. They become a UPick tree farm with Christmas displays on December weekends.

Affordable Apple Picking in Washington State

Before you plan your apple-picking adventure, let’s dive deeper into the affordable options available in Washington State:

  • Budget-Friendly Orchards: While apple picking is a delightful activity, it doesn’t have to break the bank. Look for orchards and farms that offer affordable u-pick options. 
  • Family-Friendly Fruit Picking: Apple picking is a fantastic family outing. Explore orchards that cater to families with kid-friendly activities. 
  • Varieties of Apples: Washington has a diverse range of apple varieties. Discover the unique flavors of different apple types and find the ones that suit your taste. 
  • Organic Options: If you prefer organic produce, consider organic apple orchards that offer pesticide-free options. 
  • Seasonal Fruit: Beyond apples, Washington orchards offer various seasonal fruits. Plan your visit to enjoy raspberries, blueberries, and more.

Yakima’s Harvest – Queen of Washington State PYO

With 163 certified (or awaiting certification) organic farms among its 3,100 farms, Yakima Valley is one of the largest producers in the Pacific Northwest. Crops include grapes for their famous wines, hops for their award-winning beer, cherries, and, of course, apples, apples, and apples. Although Yakima is not very close to Seattle (allow 2 1/2 hours for the 150-mile drive), it’s well worth a day trip.

West Valley U-Pick is one of many small, family-owned farms in the county. Beginning in June, buy or pick your own blueberries, raspberries, apples, pears, pluots, and other fruits and vegetables. Gala, Fuji, Honeycrisp, and Blondee apples are available for u-pick mid-August to October, then it’s pumpkins. Bring a jug or buy one at the farmstand and press your apple cider. Kids will love the hand-cranked, old-fashioned press. Experiment by adding other fruits to enhance the flavor.

We want to shout out to Johnson Orchards, where the fruit is in season almost all year. While it was USA Today‘s pick as a ‘top 10 apple picking spot,’ this place is about quality fruit, not the raucous fall U-Pick festival that some orchards have become. They feature cherries, cherries, and more cherries from mid-June to late July, so expect Bing, Rainier, Van, Lapin, Skeena, and Sweetheart varieties.

Come back in August for apricots, peaches, or nectarines, as well as pluots, plums, and pears. As for apples, they’ve raised apple orchards there since 1904, and the best harvest is from September to December. In addition to the many varietals, you can enjoy Johnson’s beautiful rolling hills, changing leaves, extensive bakery items baked each weekend, and classic ca. 1916 apple warehouse.

Don’t Forget Washington State Pumpkins!

Orange pumpkins and white gourds are ready for your selection in late September.
Pumpkin picking and hayrides are a great fall treat.

As you get closer to Seattle, many of the farms go purely pumpkin and only sell apples through their farm store. Carleton Farm, about a half hour from Seattle, is one of them. It’s owned by third-generation Carleton’s and offers much more than PYO on its 60 acres. Look for pumpkins by the thousands each October, in addition to other vegetables.

Go have fun with the pumpkin cannon, exactly what it sounds like. Along with the zip line, hay rides, farm animals, soccer bowling, bucket train, and corn maze, it has a fee. The annual Fall Festival includes Family Fun Nights with games and after-dark carnival activities (think Flashlight Maze.) Brave kids can hang out for the Halloween-themed Haunted Swamp and Zombie Hunt.

Find the best deals on Washington hotels for your apple-picking adventures. guarantees the best prices for any type of property and no booking fees!

Remlinger Farms is home to a very commercial Family Fun Park with over 25 kid-friendly rides and attractions. Admission to the Fun Park (open weekends in early summer, then Wednesday to Sunday through late October) includes pony rides, a 4H Animal Barnyard, authentic half-sized steam train rides, pony rides, antique cars, a zipline, and more.

Inquire about the self-guided tours that take you around to learning stations to hear about pioneer life, farm animals, corn milling, and more from guides at each station. Their U-Pick offering jumps from raspberry and strawberry weekends in spring to pumpkins from late September to late October. A cafe, craft brewery, and ice cream stand are open. This is when Remlinger shines.

Visit this place for its variety of pumpkins. In addition to pumpkin patches, the Carpinito Brothers Farm, which grows tomatoes and other vegetables, sells bark and nursery supplies. Their market also features produce from farms around the state. Get lost in their fun corn maze, open through the end of October.

Budget-Friendly Apple Picking Tips

To make the most of your apple-picking adventure without overspending, consider these budget-friendly tips:

  • Share the Experience: Split the costs with friends or family to make it even more affordable. Keywords: ‘shared apple picking,’ ‘group fruit picking.’
  • BYOB (Bring Your Own Bag): Instead of buying bags on-site, bring your own reusable containers to save on expenses. Keywords: ‘BYOB apple picking,’ ‘reusable fruit containers.’
  • Early Bird Discounts: Some orchards offer discounts for early morning visitors. Take advantage of these deals. Keywords: ‘early bird apple picking,’ ‘morning discounts at orchards.’
  • Promotions and Coupons: Keep an eye out for promotions, coupons, and special offers from orchards. Keywords: ‘apple picking discounts,’ ‘orchard coupons.’
  • Homemade Apple Treats: After picking apples, try making homemade apple pies, crisps, or cider to enjoy the fruits of your labor. Keywords: ‘homemade apple recipes,’ ‘DIY apple desserts.’


Enjoy your day out, and share your favorite apple recipes!

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