Monday, August 24, 2015

An Afternoon In Seattle

A View Of The Seattle Skyline From The Ferry

Luckily I named this blog Budget Day Trips in the Bay Area and Beyond, because the next few posts will be about my family's vacation in Washington state. This first one will be about the afternoon we spent in Seattle.

You can't see too much of Seattle in one afternoon, But we made the most of it and enjoyed ourselves in a relaxed manner. We were staying at my parents house on the Olympic Peninsula, so to get to Seattle, we drove to Bainbridge Island and left the car at the ferry terminal parking lot, then walked on to the ferry.  I love the ferry rides. They only take about 30 minutes, long enough to get a cup of clam chowder and a sweet, relax and read, or enjoy the view.

Walk-Ons From Bainbridge Island To Seattle Are Free; However, There Is A Fee For The Return Trip.
Two Kids Who Were Excited About The Seattle Ferris Wheel
Although Seattle has an extensive transportation system, we chose to explore places within walking distance.  Our first stop was Pioneer Square; they have an underground tour that I was interested in doing. But when we got there, we had to maneuver through many drug addled people hanging out in the square and then we found out that the tour was expensive and probably pretty cheesy- the tour guides tell jokes the entire time. So we decided to SKIP IT and I suggest you do too.

So we walked to the Pike Place Market, definitely a tourist spot but a favorite place for us. It can be pretty crowded in the summer but Pike's Place has a lot of character and much to look at. Every time my husband and I visit, we eat lunch at the Copacabana Café. They have great ceviche, beers, and a balcony view overlooking the market place street. Although they are popular, we've never had to wait to be seated.

The Copacabana Café 1520 Pike Place, Seattle WA; 206-622-6359
Don't Forget Your Sunglasses! When The Sun Comes Out, It's Bright!
The Public Market has a very cool tourist trap - the Pike Place Fish Company. The deal is, if someone buys a fish, the fishmonger tosses it to the guy working behind the counter, who cleans it, wraps it and tosses it back. Or something like that. They work in reasons to toss the fish back-and-forth because that is what everyone is waiting for. The fish is very good, but beware, prices are high.

There's A Lot More Stores Heading Inside The Market, Most Of Them Not Worth Visiting
Who Knew Tossing A Fish Could Be So Amusing?
After Pike Place we googled Nordstrom's because, I said, if we can find where Nordstrom's is, we can find the more upscale streets. We did. But better than that, we discovered a really cool urban park called Westlake Park. It's in the downtown shopping district near the Westlake Mall.

I just discovered that Westlake Park used to be a gathering place for drug dealers, but in April 2015, the Seattle police and FBI "cleared the 9 1/2-block area around Westlake Park of nearly 100 drug dealers and repeat criminals, arresting them or connecting them to diversion programs." If I had known this used to be a drug dealing park, I never would have gone there! But we didn't see anything, In fact, we thought the park was great! So, I think it's okay for families to visit.

I Love The Little Library And Tables! Too Bad No One's Using Them.

While My Husband And Son Played Foosball, My Daughter And I Went To The Shoe Store Across The Street
There Were Several Chess Games Going On
 I don't have a photo, but I have to give a shout out to Metsker Maps. This is a great store that sells world maps, globes, travel guides, hiking maps, and coolest of all - replicas of ancient maps. I bought a 1562 map of the Americas. BTW their products seemed reasonably priced.

Our last stop was Starbucks - we had to! Starbucks originated in Seattle. Iced frappuccinos gave us fuel for the ferry ride back to Bainbridge Island. It had been a great afternoon.

Leaving Seattle

If you go -  There's so much to do and see in Seattle. For more ideas, check out these websites:
Visit Seattle
Seattle With Kids - A Guide
Seattle City Pass

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