Our Community: Poulsbo

Poulsbo is located on Liberty Bay, a sheltered inlet of Puget Sound, in northern Kitsap County.  With a population of 9,200, it ranks as one of the three largest cities in a county that is still largely rural.  The town was first settled by Scandinavian immigrants in the 1880's, largely from Norway.  Today, Poulsbo's historic downtown pays tribute to their Norwegian roots with decorative rosemåling, large murals and Alpine-style woodcarving visible along Front Street.

Between the Cascades and the Olympics

Poulsbo is in the middle of northwest Washington, only a short drive away from two ferry terminals that can take passengers east across Puget Sound: the ferry from Kingston goes to Edmonds, a north Seattle suburb, and the ferry leaving Bainbridge Island lands in downtown Seattle.  A brief trip north from Poulsbo on Highway 3 will take the traveler to the Hood Canal Bridge, the gateway to the Olympic Peninsula, with easy access to outdoor recreation opportunities at its national park, forests, and breathtaking beaches.


"Little Norway on the Fjord"

Poulsbo gained this nickname from the view that treats residents and visitors from many points in town:  Liberty Bay, ending at forested hills, then the spectacular peaks of the Olympics to the west.  

A waterfront park with a boardwalk and pavilion provide opportunities to enjoy the unique setting, or visitors can rent kayaks or boats and experience the Bay first-hand.  There's often a good chance of spotting a seal, heron, or eagle.  

A visit to the town's Marine Science Center is a fun introduction to the area's marine life.


What We Like Best About Poulsbo

Front Street - Poulsbo's historic downtown shopping area has a wonderful mix of restaurants, coffee houses, book stores, antique shops, art galleries, and fantastic bakeries.  Come to Front Street for ice cream or donuts, fine European cuisine or Nepalese food, collectible treasures or trendy clothing and shoes.

Parks and trails - Poulsbo has a network of fourteen parks with trails and interpretative displays.

Safe, close-knit community - There are fun community events throughout the year sponsored by business and civic groups that help bring Poulsbo residents together.  The weekly Farmers' Market is a good place to shop for fresh vegetables, other farm products, and handmade crafts.  Viking Fest in May is a celebration of Norway's Constitution Day, complete with a parade, fun run, and singing and dancing performances at Kvelstad Pavilion in Liberty Bay Park.  Folks in Poulsbo have their patriotic celebration the day before everyone else around, with a 3rd of July fireworks display. Front Street is the location for gallery walksstreet dances, and, on December weekends, performances by area singers, musicians, and dancers on every corner helping to boost the spirit of holiday shoppers.