The new year is still in its infancy, but let’s be honest – it’s already time for a break from the daily 209 grind. Sure, spring break is on the horizon, but few things can beat a spontaneous four-day getaway. And if you’re looking for a quick, painless trip, few destinations can beat the Emerald City.
Don’t let the rainy reputation keep you away from Seattle and all its offerings. Just a hop, skip and two-hour jump from the Sacramento airport, this gem of a city is at the top of my list of places to revisit.
Seattle is a big city with close to two dozen neighborhoods to explore. With that in mind, you’ll need to visit more than once just to scratch the surface. Consider this a guide for your first trip.
Set up homebase in Capitol Hill for its centralized location and take advantage of the city’s light rail system, known as the Link, to complete each leg of your city tour. Don’t forget to explore before you branch out, though. The densest of all Seattle’s neighborhoods, Cap Hill might also be its most diverse, which is reflected in the restaurants, cafes, and shops that dot the streets.
Make sure to walk 15th Avenue to find local shops and tasty snacks, like the macaroons at Bakery Noveau and Duck Poutine at Smith. Other places to keep in mind include Italian sister restaurants Artusi and Spinasse, Oddfellows Café + Bar, and Rachel’s Ginger Beer.
Also in this neighborhood: the Jimi Hendrix statue, Bruce Lee’s gravesite, and Elliot Bay Books.
Trying to see the city through the eyes of a Seattleite is fun, but the more ‘touristy’ adventures are also a must. And when most people think of touring Seattle, the first thing that comes to mind is Pike Place Market. Peruse the various vendors and experience the fish throw at the market before ordering street eats at Mee Sum Pastry to eat along the Puget Sound.
Now that you’re along the Waterfront, it’s time to explore the many piers that are home to attractions like the Seattle Great Wheel, Seattle Aquarium, Lumen Field, and the Washington State Ferries.
The Puget Sound is the inlet of water that separates Seattle from Bainbridge Island.
My first order of business when visiting a new city is to seek out delicious food I can’t find back home. When researching the culinary options of the Pacific Northwest, locals, online communities and YouTube personalities consistently recommended one neighborhood in particular – the ID.
Harbor City Restaurant is my recommendation for authentic Chinese Dim Sum and should keep you more than occupied during brunch. Walk off the delectable dumplings and check out hobby shops along with the Uwajimaya Asian Food & Gift Market where you can find Asian-exclusive snacks, stationary, and more. If you’re still hungry, stop by Chung Chun Rice Hot Dog before you leave to try the infamous Korean corndogs and donuts.
The award-winning Hing Hay Park and its ornate Grand Pavilion is located in this neighborhood.
What trip to Seattle would be complete without the Space Needle, right? To sightsee this historic landmark, you’ll have to visit the Seattle Center in lower Queen Anne where you will also find the Seattle Children’s Museum, International Fountain, and Seattle Center Amory.
The Museum of Pop Culture
Located at the Seattle Center and boasts exhibits that will celebrate the likes of Jimi Hendrix, Nirvana, and Pearl Jam as well as other pop culture niches like indie gaming, horror cinema, and hip hop history.
The Seattle Center was home to the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair.