Seattle, Washington is by far one of THE MOST fun cities to visit. If you’re here for a weekend and only have a day or two to explore the city, this is the itinerary for you. Warning: this is full of walking, looking, eating.
Stay at the Vintage Park downtown. You’ll be near Pike’s Market, lots of shopping and tons of restaruants. The hotel is a renovated old building with cozy, charming rooms and excellent service. We’ve stayed here many times before living here and still go there for brunch at their restaurant, Tulio, often. Their two cage-free eggs breakfast with fennel sausage is divine and they serve deliciously strong Cafe Vita coffee.
BTW if you want to dine with the best view of the city across the water, Salty’s does a complimentary limo pick up and drop off from any hotel downtown. You just have to reserve it through your hotel. Incredible view. Fun atmosphere/experience. Incredible service. Good food. Weak drinks!
Start your day by heading down to Pike’s Place Market, located downtown at First and Pike. Begin with a little coffee at the first-ever Starbucks. There will be plenty of other “local” coffee spots to try everywhere. Pick up one of their exclusive Pike’s Market mugs you can only get there.
You will usually find a really cool blue grass or folk band playing outside. Nice entertainment when the line is long!
They serve drinks alone and no food so…head a few steps up to Piroshky Piroshky Russian Bakery: a postage-stamp spot with a line around corner. Watch the chefs making fresh pastries in the window as you drool in line!
Order the Smoked Salmon Pate (pictured) or Marzipan Roll (get two of these).
They’ll warm them up for you if they aren’t straight out of the oven.
Keep in mind they have limited quantities…I haven’t been able to get a Marzipan Roll past 3 p.m. on a given Saturday.
Here are the hours (please double check all times on respective websites)
Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-6 p.m.
Saturday & Sunday 8 a.m.-6:30 p.m.
Meander through the market where you’ll find piles of fresh produce, loads of seafood, buckets of flowers and charming local crafts.
You can order a little “street food” from the seafood vendors too, like a little cup of crab meat with cocktail sauce to eat on the go.
Here is a Korean Burrito I got in the market one afternoon. MMMMMM.
Buy some yummy pepper jelly to put in the checked baggage. I love the hand made cutting boards.
Watch the “fishermen” throw the fish. If you’re lucky, you can throw a fish too! Great for photos! We’ve invited one (fisherman) and his girlfriend (who works at the bakery across the street) to a soccer game with us once. Neat to know someone in the market!
If you are a total Sleepless in Seattle fan like me, check out The Athenian Inn.
Take a picture of your party in front of the famous Public Market Sign and double check for photo bombing locals. Hilarious!
Grab lunch at Matt’s in the Market Best view of the market with a little shi-shi atmosphere. INCREDIBLE FOOD. Get the tuna melt-it’s like no other tuna melt you’ve ever had. Lunch or Dinner only (closed on Sundays).
If you’re really into the history of the market, try out an underground tour.
Tear yourselves away from the market to check out the Space Needle.
You can even go to the top at night! It is open until 9:30 p.m. Monday-Thursday and Sunday and open until 10:30 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays!
It is viewable from many places in the city but you’ve really gotta get up close! It is a bit spendy to go to the top but it is worth it! Great views and you’ll feel like you’re Frasier. It has always been magical to me. You can be uber fancy and have dinner at the Space Needle’s restaurant, SkyCity. Pictures of yourself out in front of it are fun too.
P.S.S. If you’re using a rental car (you really don’t need one), be sure to check out the parking signs b/c Seattle has a lot of rules! There are many streets with no meters but machines hwere you purchase time and put the sticker on the inside of your window!
If you want more…take a ride on the fairly new Seattle Great Wheel back near Pike’s Market. It’s a giant ferris wheel on the water. They even have a VIP gondola you can ride!
Grab a late dinner at Umi Sake House and try to get a seat at the sushi bar in Shawn’s (head sushi chef) or Arcedia’s section. Let the sushi chefs omakase you into mouth watering bliss. I’ve had better sushi here than in Japan (sacrilege). There is a great happy hour menu from 4-6 p.m. every day of the week. Happy hour is also 4 p.m.- 8 p.m. on the front porch or cocktail bar. Late night happy hour is 11 p.m.-1 a.m. Sunday – Thursday.
We love the trying a fatty tuna that’s in season! Also, order the Sounder Roll…a total party in your mouth.
You can make a reservation on their answering machine or if the wait is long, go next door to Local 360 for a cocktail. I get their old fashioned.
What a fun day! If you’re still up for it, there are tons of great spots to catch a cocktail and late night snack. Try one of the gastro-pubs like Black Bottle.
Laying off the sauce? Check out Paul Allen’s one-showing theatre, Cinerama. Please get a bag of the chocolate popcorn…but please do not eat all of it!!!
If you’re staying downtown, stop by the Seattle Public Library. The architecture is very appealing, the homeless people watching is interesting.
(photo by fimoculous, via Flickr)
Here is a picture of Chris in the library. Crazy red Lady-Gaga-esque basement!
Well, have a great weekend and dream of visiting Seattle! See you on Monday!
If you have transportation and the time, get breakfast at The Fat Hen!
**For another version of a Seattle weekend, check out the guest post on Eat Drink Shop Love called, CITY GUIDE: SEATTLE, WASHINGTON.
(top photo of Seattle Skyline by jmorgan, via Flickr)