Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Seattle Travel Guide

If you follow us on Instagram, you may have seen that my husband and I recently went on a trip to the Pacific Northwest to celebrate our (almost) 5 year anniversary. We spent a lot of time researching, asking around, and going to places that interested us, and we had an amazing trip in the slightly less than two days we were in Seattle, WA. This is by no means an all-inclusive list, but here are some of our favorite places we experienced, ate, and drank in the city. (Stay tuned in a couple weeks for our Portland Guide!)


The Museum of Pop Culture might have been our favorite thing in Seattle. From the in-depth Jimi Hendrix exhibit, to photos of David Bowie by Mick Rock, and the Guitar Gallery featuring guitars that belonged to everyone from Chuck Berry to Kurt Cobain, it was as educational as it was fun. At the last minute also decided to swing by the Fantasy wing and were greeted with the dress Judy Garland wore as Dorothy in the Wizard of Oz!

Chihuly Garden and Glass

This is a recommended stop by almost everyone and it really was pretty neat! This museum features the work of glassblower Dale Chihuly and the glass comes in every shape and size, color and texture. From fire-like sculptures, to seascapes, chandeliers, and ceiling installations, it made for a pretty broad body of work that was quirky and lovely and breathtaking.

Space Needle

I feel like this is one place you haaaave to go when you're in Seattle. I loved learning about its history and the aesthetics of its design, but in all honesty, we were kind of underwhelmed with the experience. It was pretty crowded (on a Monday morning) and we just spent our time shoving through groups of people on the observation deck. There was a lot of smoke from area wildfires hanging in the air, so maybe if the views had been crystal clear, we could have felt differently. Or maybe if we were from Seattle, it would be really fun to see and point out neighborhoods and buildings we knew. Also, I'm in love with the design of their website and print materials and was really disappointed that no items in the gift shop showcased that awesome design style.

If this has been on your bucket list: absolutely do it, don't let me talk you out of it. If not, I'd save my money for other cool places and just get some pictures of it from the ground. Have you been? Did you feel the same way?

Unicorn/Narwhal Bar

This carnival-themed bar, located in the Capitol Hill neighborhood, is a gritty and super fun place for a late night drink. From the large selection of arcade games and a photo booth, to the wall art and fixtures, every little architectural and design detail—including a gemstone studded ATM—was thought through. We went on Monday night, which is karaoke night, and were thoroughly entertained. I highly recommend the Mule-i-corn cocktail, a fun twist on a Moscow Mule.

Rachel's Ginger Beer

This homemade ginger beer (which is like a spiced up ginger ale, no alcohol) is next-level good. Serving flavors from blood orange to blueberry, they've got a flavor for everyone. There are a few locations around the city, and they also serve cocktails on draft. Great for a mid-afternoon pick-me up!

The Walrus and the Carpenter

This seafood restaurant is equal parts hip classic. From delicious oysters to stunning cheese plates, we could have stayed here all night and ordered small plates.

Pike Place Market

Though it started as a Farmer's Market, Pike Place Market is extensive indoor/outdoor market with tons of restaurants, fish stands, and almost any little crafty thing you could ever buy. Below is also the cool view from the rooftop garden. Definitely worth a walk-through before you start your day.


Stateside was always high up on our list to hit, but after having a bunch of flight delays, we missed our initial dinner here, so we ended up rearranging our schedule a bit to stay through dinner another evening to try it! We were not disappointed. From the palm leaf wallpaper to the mint green serving dishes, everything was well thought out, and that doesn't even include the food. They served a really fun take on Asian dishes that were absolutely delicious, and some we're going to try to recreate at home! Also, a drink in a coconut? Done.

Anchorhead Coffee

This trendy coffee shop was really close to our hotel and was a great find. I opted for the spicy mocha, and we obviously had to try the quaffle: a cinnamon roll croissant made in a waffle maker. Definitely think we'll be trying that at home!

Underground Seattle Tour

This one was item we didn't schedule days ahead of time, but thought it would be fun to check out once we had a gap in our schedule. It ended up being so fun and educational! It was located in the Pioneer Square neighborhood, which was the original Seattle. We learned in its early days, the roads of Seattle kept getting filled with water, and after a fire that devastated most of the town, Seattle was rebuilt at a higher level. So, all of the buildings in that area are actually the second story of buildings. We were able to walk through the underground on old sidewalks under the street as we learned about the Gold Rush, Brothels that contributed to the economic success of the early city, and more.

Victrola Coffee Roasters

This cute roasterie sells all types of coffee including a cold brew they bottle. We stopped in and got some cold brews to go for breakfast the next morning. Yum!

Macrina Bakery

Often revered as one of the best bakeries in the country, Macrina serves up everything from pastries to loaves and all of them look delicious. We picked up a couple of mini loaves here for sandwiches on our hike the next day, and they were wonderful. We may or may not have also bought a loaf to toast for breakfast and slather with Brie cheese and strawberry jam. (We did. Highly recommend). Speaking of that hike...

Image copyright Macrina Bakery

Mt. Rainier

Though the Mt. Rainier National Park isn't exactly innnn Seattle, it's definitely worth the nearly two hour drive to see the magnificent mountain and landscape. We hiked on glaciers, saw gorgeous wildflowers, and trees and streams that were straight out of perfect paintings. It was my first time hiking in high elevation, so I won't promise I wasn't struggling at a couple points, but LOOKATTHISVIEW. We began our Hike at the Paradise Area, and though the parking lot area there is pretty busy, we'd recommend it for shorter and scenic hikes. In all we spent about 4 hours on a moderate and intermediate trails.

One thing to skip in our opinion: Discovery Park. Probably cool if you're local and want to get out of the city. If not, it's probably not worth a visit if you have a short stay. We had to hike a couple of miles to get to the water, and the only thing at the end of the peninsula was boarded up houses (and maybe you're in sandals because you weren't prepared to hike because you thought it was an actual park? Maybe). You live and you learn!

There were so many awesome recommendations and places we wanted to check out, and unfortunately, there are only so many hours in one day. If you're visiting, be sure to check out these other places too (and let me know if they're as great as we'd hoped they are!)

Thai Tom


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