Seattle, Washington State, USA

Our friends met us at Vancouver Airport after the long flight from Auckland and we had time for a good catch-up lunch before our train to Seattle late afternoon.  It’s a fairly leisurely (ie slow) ride giving you more time to get lost in a book or take in the scenery along the way.  However it was fairly late when we checked into our Downtown hotel which was walking distance to everything we wanted to see.

Overlooking the Elliott Bay waterfront on Puget Sound Pike Place Market is one of the oldest continuously operated public farmers’ markets in the United States.  The market is set on several levels, each featuring a variety of unique shops such as antique dealers, comic book and collectible shops, small family-owned restaurants.  The major attractions are the fish market and the first Starbucks founded in 1971 and been in continuous operation ever since.

Seattle’s iconic observation tower, the Space Needle is 184m high and was built for the 1962 World’s Fair.  There are views of the downtown Seattle skyline, the Olympic and Cascade Mountains, Mount Rainier, Mount Baker, Elliott Bay, and various islands in Puget Sound.  However the weather was poor so we decided to forgo the elevator ride to the observation deck.

Seattle has one of the best light rail networks in the US so it was so easy to get around the city. There is also the Seattle Center Monorail which provides a fun, quick, and convenient link between downtown Seattle and Seattle Center, home to the Space NeedlePacific Science CenterMuseum of Pop CultureThe Children’s Museum, and a host of theatrical and cultural experiences.  It was a great way to navigate the city without getting wet in the rain!!

We woke to a much better day and made our way down to the ferry terminal and bought return tickets to Bainbridge Island. It’s just a short 35min trip but simply put, the ferry trip offers the absolute best view of the Seattle skyline. The mix of historic and modern architecture, not to mention the iconic Space Needle, tower over Puget Sound. Majestic Mount Rainier dominates the open sky as the ferry leaves the city.  From the Bainbridge ferry terminal it’s a short walk to the  charming city center with great restaurants, shops and cafes.   There are a great selection of short and long walks throughout the island and Geoffrey was tempted but was weary that he had the New York marathon event the following week so we just did some short nature walks through the woods and along the shoreline.

It was a shame that the weather didn’t play its part for much of this trip.  But being frequent visitors to Vancouver a Seattle side trip was a logical excursion being only.  Perhaps next time we’ll take the ferry …

If you would like more information about this destination please do not hesitate to contact me.

View of downtown Seattle from Bainbridge ferry

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