After exchanging plane tickets as the "paper" part of our one year anniversary, we spent five days exploring Seattle and eating our way through it's neighborhoods. Below you will find my "do's" and "don'ts" and a few "maybes" in between.
Go to Pike Place Market
We spent five hours wandering up and down and around Pike Place Market. You don't understand just how massive it is until you've been there and tried to locate a tiny storefront yogurt shop. Fresh fish, fruit and flowers are everywhere you look. It took everything in me not to buy a bouquet of peonies. There are countless good food options and free samples galore - but be careful, you can fill up on the samples way too easily! We recommend: Beecher's (they don't call it "world's best mac & cheese" for nothin'), Ellenos Greek Yogurt, Rachel's Ginger Beer, and Honest Biscuit.
Hike Snoqualmie Falls
I visited the falls at the ripe ol' age of 9. I don't remember it in detail, so I was excited to see it again as an adult and be able to appreciate the beauty in nature. It did not disappoint! It amazed me how silent the forest was surrounding the falls. We hiked a half mile down to the river at the base of the falls and then back up again. My calves were screaming....and I consider myself to be in shape! However, it was 100% worth the drive (about 45 minutes) and the hike (1 mile total). One of my favorite parts of the trip!
Eat Fresh Seafood
There's something about eating seafood straight outta the ocean that makes it taste so much better. We dined at multiple seafood restaurants while in town and had our fair share of crab and oysters, but one place in particular deserves a shout out: The Walrus & The Carpenter. The food was absolutely delicious, yes, but the entire dinner was an experience we will never forget. If you find yourself in SEA-town, make this restaurant a priority. We recommend getting there a little before they open (4 p.m.) because there will be a line! Regardless, though, it's totally worth a wait.
Visit the Space Needle
Probably the most "touristy" and cliche thing you can do in Seattle. It is pricy and there will be a little bit of a wait, but the view at the top is unbeatable. And if you've never done it before, it is fun to say you did. Make sure you do it on a clear day if at all possible so you can see Mt. Rainier!
Meet the Fremont Troll
Not an experience in any way, but a fun photo-op....if you're into that sort of thing. There are a butt load of cool shops and restaurants nearby, so you could make a nice little afternoon out of it! We recommend Pie for an afternoon snack - their Peanut Butter Pie is TO-DIE-FOR.
Starbucks Roastery & Tasting Room
Another "touristy" thing. If you have to go Starbucks, go this route. The drinks and pastries they serve are not available at any other Starbucks location and are very unique (think: mint infused carbonated cold brew). It is kind of a cluster and there are a TON of people, but it's cool to watch the bean roasting process.
Take the Ferry to Bainbridge Island
The ferry ride was so fun - if all forms of public transport were that laid back, I'd be all about it. I quite enjoyed embracing my inner Derek Shepherd. Bainbridge Island, though, was a little bit of a let down. There were a few shops and restaurants we enjoyed, but nothing to write home about. We were ready to head back within an hour or two.
Go to the EMP Museum
It is WAY overpriced and didn't have much to look at. I'm not a museum person or a music nerd, but Cole is and he agreed that it was a major waste of money.
Stand in Line at the Original Starbucks
Seriously, the line is stupid and they only serve plain coffee. Take a picture outside and walk .14 miles to the Starbucks around the corner. Or better yet, try a local coffee joint, instead. Seattle is the coffee capitol, after all. It basically guarantees you can't go wrong!
Stuff Your Face With Mediocre Food
I'm saying this more as a reminder to myself for our next trip. Just because calories don't count on vacation doesn't mean you should make yourself sick on food you don't 100% love. Save room!
Last but not least, because ya'll know we love our foodcations, here are the places we loved and would recommend to anyone traveling to Seattle!
- The Walrus & The Carpenter - hands down our favorite!
- Beecher's - world's best mac & cheese is a YES but the dungeness crab grilled cheese is a big NO unless you like the taste of vomit
- Elleno's Greek Yogurt
- Elliott's Oyster House - order the oysters rockefeller!
- Rock Creek - their brunch is top notch delicious
- Bakery Nouveau - get the twice baked almond croissant!
- Pie - peanut butter pie gets an A++
- Best Coffee: C&P (try the mocha w/theo chocolate), Seattle Coffee Works
Don't waste your time on:
- Serious Pie
- Daily Dozen Doughnut @ Pike Place Market
- Cupcake Royale