Seattle is a place I’ve wanted to visit for ages but could never quite justify it, especially with little ones. My urge to go stems from the grunge/subpop days 20years or so ago. And it also sounds a beautiful city, by the sea and mountains. I thought perhaps one day I would make it as part of another holiday, stopping off on a tour of the West Coast USA or Canada.
Anyway, last week Gary got the chance to go with work! He knows how much I want to go but logistics with one at school it would be tricky. *Queue chat with grannies and grandpa and it looked possible 🙂 they don’t see the kids that much as both live 70 miles plus away, so jumped at the chance to have them all to themselves.
So it was agreed! Flights booked! Gary decided to downgrade his seat to economy (from economy plus) to sit with me. It must be love 🙂
We were booked to stay at the Westin Hotel in the Bellevue area hotel for 5 nights. It is around 20 minute taxi ride to downtown Seattle from Bellevue, which is a city in its own right and has lots going on. The hotel was in a new area of town and had plenty of shops, bars and restaurants to chose from.
I have to admit to a few wobbly moments. It is a long way to go and so much “could” go wrong. But we don’t often get the chance to get away and this seemed like an amazing opportunity that doesn’t come around very often. I knew the boys would love being with their grandparents who love them dearly and they will have so much fun they wouldn’t even miss us!
Anyway here are my highlights of Seattle:
- The people – very friendly and helpful!
- The space needle
- Experience Music Project museum – exhibitions on Avatar, Horror films, Nirvana and Jimmy Hendrix, plus jamming rooms to have a go on drums, keyboards, guitars and vocals (that was the best bit!)
- Pike place market
- The underground buses (the only US city to have an underground system for buses!). They also have overground buses too (so something in common with the Wombles!). Taxi’s were really expensive and as Bellevue is around a 20 minute drive from downtown Seattle the buses were fab at a cost of $2.50 and free in the central area of Seattle!
- Watching the Seattle Sounders football team (my first ever football game!)
- Bellevue arts museum – some great works of modern art. Funniest moment being when saw one that I thought was just three blank canvases hung on the wall! It turned out to have screen prints on it taken from Skype also in white that could only be seen from certain angles.
- Starbucks coffee machine in room
- Did I mention shopping?
- Delicious fresh food, particuarly fish. Loved Crab Pot!
- Starbucks for offering free wifi in all outlets – thank you! Other places I found offered free wifi – Nordstr0m and the Public Library!
- Seattle underground tour – wandering through the underground of the Pioneer Square area and learning lots about how the city was built! Lots of jokes thrown in 🙂
- I would like to add the smith tower but it was only open weekends when we visited and closed for a private event on the Saturday I went. It looked beautiful though and the pioneer square area had lots of history.
Anyway Seattle isn’t a particularly big city but it has an amazing energy, fantastic friendly people and is a great place to visit. The things I did are just a fraction of what you can get up to. Here is a list of things I would like to do if I were ever to return!
- Explore old Bellevue and the Lake Washington shores.
- Ferry tour (weather was generally cold and drizzly when I was there do didn’t fancy it on my own).
- Experience more nightlife in downtown Seattle.
- Aquarium and Zoo (if I was with kids)
- Seattle Arts Museum and Olympic Sculpture Park
- Eat out in the International District
We had a fantastic time and when we got back home I had the distinct impression the boys hadn’t even noticed we had gone! Phew 😉