20 Best Things to Do in Roslyn, WA

Roslyn, WA
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The city of Roslyn, located in Kittitas County, Washington, United States, began as a coal mining company city in 1886.

This old coal mining city is renowned as the filming location for the legendary 1990s television program Northern Exposure, which you can learn more about by visiting the Rosalyn Historical Museum.

With false-front wooden buildings and one of the world's oldest saloons, Roslyn's main street appears like an Old West city, and since most of the original structures are still standing, it gives you the impression of stepping into the set of an old western film.

Take a look at the best things to do in Roslyn City, whether it’s visiting shops and restaurants, basking in the beauty of nature, or enjoying the city’s rich historic sites, all of which are easy to explore on foot.

Pay a Visit to Roslyn Cemetery

Gravestones at Roslyn Cemetery
Joe Mabel, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Roslyn Cemetery is home to an astonishing piece of history: the gravestones of all 45 people killed in the 1892 mine explosion.

In Washington's Cascade Mountains, The Roslyn Cemetery has a real patchwork of multicultural burials inside its wide, wooded grounds.

A large funeral procession marched through Roslyn's main street, but the lives of the women and children left behind changed forever.

Daytime view of Roslyn Cemetery
Joe Mabel, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

If you go to the Roslyn Cemetery, you'll see that it's split into 27 ethnic groups since the workers were immigrants from different countries.

The broad group of pioneers who came to the Cascade mines in search of precious metals created the groundwork for the multicultural community that sprang up in their wake.

Many descendants of these immigrant miners still live in Roslyn today.

A gravestone made of brick at Roslyn Cemetery
Joe Mabel, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Explore the Roslyn Historical Museum

Museums are fantastic places to meet new people, learn about our ancestors' lives, and broaden your horizons.

Roslyn City was founded when surveyors from the Northern Pacific Railroad discovered coals seams in 1886, but mining operations ceased because of the greater demand for fuel oil and electricity.

Presently, the city of Roslyn has made use of its coal mining roots, thus, featuring the Rosalyn Historical Museum as one of its famous tourist attractions.

The Roslyn Museum is jam-packed with historical artifacts and exhibitions, and there's even a treasure hunt list of things to seek for.

Located on Pennsylvania Avenue, the museum does an excellent job of bringing history to life, explaining the city's past through its fantastic collection of items from Roslyn's heyday as a coal-mining city and Northern Exposure memorabilia.

Visit the Roslyn Historical Museum if you want to discover more about heritage while also enjoying art and culture.

Walk along the Rosalyn Coal Mines Trail

In 1886, the Northern Pacific Railway built a branch transporting coal and local inhabitants.

Despite the absence of the rails, the path has been conserved as a historical path with plaques indicating major places along the way.

The Coal Mine Trail is easily accessible from a number of points.

Following the original Northern Pacific Railway Line path, the Coal Mines Trail stretches to about 7.6 kilometers traveling through Roslyn before concluding in Ronald.

You may gaze upon the ruins of Roslyn's mines and train terminal by taking a walk along the trail.

Watch a Movie at the Roslyn Theatre

Exterior view of Roslyn Theatre
DanTD, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

The Roslyn Theatre, located at 101 West Dakota Avenue, has a rustic appeal and can accommodate up to 100 people.

It is among a handful of industrial, historic buildings that have been turned into magnificent art locations.

This is a terrific venue to go to a movie since it reminds you of the movie theatres you used to frequent when you were a youngster.

For a modest charge, you can book chairs in the Loge (Balcony), which has a basket with warm blankets and pillows for guests.

An intriguing fact about this place of entertainment is that the Roslyn Theatre was formerly a morgue!

It's a little downtown theater with a lot of charm that's ideal for family or group bonding.

Grab a Bite at Roslyn Café

Exterior of Roslyn Café with its mural
gillfoto, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Built-in 1896, Roslyn Café was initially a commerce store and a liquor shop but is now a lovely café.

The camel mural on the sidewall of the café is famous as the painting by artist Dan O’Conner is the opening part of the hit television series Northern Exposure.

Northern Exposure filmmakers inserted a temporary apostrophe to the city name "Roslyn" to make it match in with the fake city of Cicely, Alaska.

Front view of Roslyn Café
Gillfoto, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Their menu has a wide range of options, including Frittatas, Omelets, Soups, and Salads for breakfast, as well as milkshakes and ice cream for dessert.

This is the restaurant to visit if you want to eat a good meal while photographing a café featured in a popular film.

Listen to the Live Music at the Brick Saloon

Exterior view of the Brick Saloon
Shakespeare at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

This historic bar has been serving beers, pub cuisine, and live music in pleasant surroundings since 1889.

At 100 W Pennsylvania Avenue, John Buffo and Peter Giovanni founded a bar, and in 1898, the pub was reconstructed with 45,000 bricks and given the name "The Brick."

Step inside to admire the Brick's stunning hundred-year-old bar, which features an original 7-meter flowing water brazier for removing waste.

The iconic Brick Saloon, Washington's oldest continually operating tavern, specializes in great pub fare and has outstanding live music every Friday and Saturday night, with family dining available until 9 p.m.

The Brick will undoubtedly become one of your favorite roadside stops!

Satisfy Your Sweet Tooth at Roslyn Candy Company

If you’re looking for special homemade goodies, then Roslyn Candy Company is the perfect place for you.

The candy store has an array of special chocolates, candies, and ice cream, with salted caramel chocolates and ice cream, served in handmade waffle cones as the favored sweets among the reviews.

Customers may also pick from a selection of artisan chocolates in a variety of fascinating flavors.

The shop location is adjacent to Red Bird Cafe and across the street from The Brick Saloon, in the historic bank building at 100 E Pennsylvania Ave in Roslyn, WA.

Everyone will definitely find something to enjoy and purchase among the variety of chocolates, sweets, and ice cream.

Support Local Products at the Rosalyn Farmers Market

The Roslyn Farmers Market is a marketplace on Pennsylvania Ave, Roslyn, Washington, for farmers, specialty food producers, food preparers, artisan/crafters, and entertainers.

The Roslyn Farmers Market is a charitable organization that follows the rules, regulations, and laws of the Washington State Farmer's Market Association, as well as local, regional, and state agencies.

There is discrimination made on the basis of ethnicity, gender, religion, sexual orientation, elderly, or nationality.

It is an excellent venue for newcomers to Kittitas County to meet the wonderful local sellers.

You've come to the right place if you're looking for the best place to shop for handcrafted items created by local craftsmen.

Create Own Art at Fused

Fused is a glass gallery located at 101 E Pennsylvania Ave, Roslyn, WA, and offers a workshop to students aged five years old and above.

The gallery has over 300 pieces of unique handcrafted glass.

As a student, you are guided with step-by-step instruction in making your very own masterpiece and what’s even better is that you get to keep the art you created!

If you opt to purchase artwork instead, you may choose a design and either choose your colors or leave it up to the artist to create a work of art you'll like.

At Fused, each item is one-of-a-kind and custom-made solely for you!

Read a Book at Basecamp Books & Bites

Exterior of Basecamp Books & Bites from across the street
Burley Packwood, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

If you want to read your favorite book while you enjoy something to eat and discover the striking trails around Roslyn, then you should visit Basecamp Books & Bites.

Basecamp Books and Bites is a café, bookshop, and bar with amazing cuisine, fantastic cocktails, and a pleasant ambiance.

This known tourist attraction is located at 110 W Pennsylvania Ave, Roslyn, WA, in the heart of Roslyn.

Aside from kid’s meals, breakfast, lunch, and dessert, the place offers relaxing drinks such as their signature cocktails, bourbon, wine, beer, rum, and brandy.

Basecamp Books and Bites lives up to its name since it provides an outdoor space for bibliophiles who love food and culture.

Taste Authentic Pre Hispanic Food at Roslyn Mexican Grill

While most Mexican cuisine is a combination of native Mesoamerican and European cookery brought by the Spanish around the 16th century, Pre Hispanic food has been the staple diet of people in various parts of Mexico and Central America for the last 6000 years and has been eaten to this day.

Before the Spanish invasion, beans, squash, and chilis, as well as a variety of spices, chocolate, and tomatoes, made up the bulk of the cuisine (which were thought poisonous by Europeans).

All of these varied foods combine to create fantastic flavors that are one of a kind to each location where they are cooked.

There has recently been a growing desire to return to our culinary roots, and Roslyn Mexican Grill situated at 103 W Pennsylvania Ave, Roslyn, WA, has seized the opportunity to do so by serving a variety of classic Mexican meals from several different states.

Roslyn Mexican Grill, which showcases authentic pre-hispanic cuisine, also has tequila brand tasting, with three tiers: Blanco, Anejo, and Reposed.

Pick a Bike at Ride Roslyn Bicycle

Ride Roslyn Bicycle is a community-supported grassroots bike shop located at 109 W Pennsylvania Ave, Roslyn, WA.

The purpose of Ride Roslyn Bicycle is to secure the things you need before your journey.

The shop is fully supplied with everything you'll need for a successful excursion to the hills.

The bike store has a superbly equipped mechanics’ shop and well-trained technicians who have decades of experience and can repair your ride at a reasonable price.

You can also rent bikes for your recreational activities, such as leisure cycling and mountain biking.

Not only does Ride Roslyn Bicycle provides a bike, but it also gives expert but friendly advice.

Enjoy Main Course Meals at the Coal Chute Cafe and Pub

Breakfast, lunch, supper, and dessert are served, along with a full bar including local draft microbrews and domestic favorites.

Aside from the main course meals, there are also appetizers, soups, salad, skillets, and chutes favorites.

Each meal at this place has a taste of home and is made with utmost care and sincerity.

You will surely delight in the luscious food set by Coal Chute Café and Pub, where simple flavors shine more brightly.

The Coal Chute greets their customers to the table like a family, and they hope your visit will be one to remember.

Grab Your Breakfast and Lunch at the Red Bird Cafe

The Red Bird Café provides superb quality food and people who often visit to eat breakfast or lunch.

Because of the scrumptious food, people from different places still travel to the cafe at 102 E Pennsylvania Ave, Roslyn, WA.

For vegetarians or those on a strict diet, the place also serves tasty gluten-free and vegan options for breakfast and lunch.

The handmade baked goods, coffee, fresh homemade pastries, traditional & adventurous breakfast options, soups, and salads are also to die for.

The trip to Red Bird Café will certainly be worth it once you try their specialties - Chili Relleno Breakfast and Quesadilla Bagna Breakfast.

Enjoy Liquor Tasting at Heritage Distilling Co.

Every day of the week, Heritage Distilling Co. Roslyn offers retail shopping and exquisite event spaces for every occasion.

The distillery found at 101 E Pennsylvania Ave J, Roslyn, WA has a bar and lounge, as well as sales and sampling of their liquors.

The lounge may be reserved for meetings, parties, and other events.

Both chocolate and whiskey are worthy of serious consideration as one of their featured products is a chocolate flavored whiskey with a modern approach.

With flavors of cocoa, dark chocolate, semi-sweet chocolate, and a hint of marshmallow, the result is a rich and delicious chocolate-flavored whiskey.

Heritage Distilling Co. proudly serves a wide range of straight spirits flights, specialized cocktails, and light appetizers.

Cocktail gifts, variety packs, mixers, and nibbles are among the items and present available.

Go on a Northern Exposure Tour around the City

Though Roslyn's best asset is its historical charm, did you know that this city was also a huge Hollywood backdrop for a television series set in Alaska?

Back in the 90s, the hit series Northern Exposure made headlines, and with it Roslyn.

To feel like you're part of that momentous experience, go on a self-guided Northern Exposure Tour.

This tour takes you to the highlighted sections of the city that made an appearance in the show.

Feel like you're driving by Joel's office along Pennsylvania Avenue.

Along Washington Avenue is Maggie's first home.

Ruth Anne's store and KBHR Radio are all along Pennsylvania Avenue on the way to Coal Mine Trail.

Keep a list of the Northern Exposure Tour map to keep you guided on Roslyn's famous shooting sites.

Host an Extravagant Party at StoneHouse101

Wish to celebrate relevant occasions and events while in Roslyn?

Then, don't forget StoneHouse101 on your list of possible venues.

This indoor and outdoor events venue, built in the 1880s, had the name Piedmonte Saloon.

Its rustic-style architecture and layout blend in perfectly with the center's modern amenities and facilities.

Depicting an Italianate pergola, this center features a lush grass yard and a seasonal fire pit.

Whether you have an anniversary coming up or a birthday that coincides with your vacation week, try out StoneHouse101's breathtaking venue.

This event venue is on North Second Street.

Enjoy Craft Beer while Relaxing in the Garden at Roslyn Brewing Company

For a more drinks-based adventure in Roslyn, Roslyn Brewing Company is your best bet!

Serving the community since 1990, this brewery takes pride in its old-world traditional flavored beers and German-inspired lagers.

Its beer garden is the best spot to take in the Roslyn air and skyline.

Opt for local classics, like Roslyn Beer and Brookside Beer, to accompany your picnicking with friends.

Or acquaint your taste buds with uncommon malt flavors, including Roslyn Belgian Ale.

Roslyn Brewing Company is on West Pennsylvania Avenue, ready to serve you and your drinking preferences.

Join Movie Nights with Your Loved One at The Roslyn Yard

Are you a fan of outdoor movie experiences?

Roslyn has its own definition of them at Movie Nights at The Roslyn Yard.

Hosted by Basecamp Book and Bites, this free summer night event starts at sunset and continues to the night.

Watch old classics like Northern Exposure, which is a vital part of Roslyn's heritage, and family-friendly movies.

Admission is free, but donations are highly appreciated.

Spend time with the whole family under the spell of the Roslyn night air.

Movie Nights at The Roslyn Yard is an otherworldly cinematic experience on West Pennsylvania Avenue you don't want to miss.

Listen to Live Music at Roslyn Music Jam

At Roslyn Music Jam, you have the chance to celebrate acoustic music.

This yearly event takes place from March to October on the fourth Monday of the month.

Listen to local and national artists and bands play some of their original stuff.

And you're encouraged to bring your own instruments at Roslyn Music Jam, too!

Be part of the festivities when you head over to Roslyn Creative Center on East Pennsylvania Avenue.

Final Thoughts

Despite the small area of Roslyn City, it is full of historic places and was even added to the National Register of Historic Places in 1978.

The significant events which occurred in the City are still felt and shared with people from all over the globe.

Roslyn City will give you a mixed experience of antique but with a hint of modern vibe throughout your stay.

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