Monday, November 19, 2018

Touristy in Seattle: Part 1

There are some places you go where you have to mark some things off the list. Would you go to London and not see Big Ben or New York and skip the Empire State Building? Naturally, in Seattle, the Space Needle was at the top of our list (especially with my newfound glass floor fetish) followed by Chihuly Gardens mostly because it's right there at the base of the Seattle's most iconic landmark. And you can't NOT go to Pike's Place Market! The other thing we were excited to do was Bill Speidel's Underground Tour.

On this trip, my plan was to cover one thing in four areas. Landmark. Art. History. Tourist Attraction. Although you can see how anywhere you go these categories merge and overlap. Our hotel was the Courtyard by Mariott in the historic Alaska Building, Seattle's first skyscraper.

Once we checked into our hotel we walked a few blocks to a bar with a sign saying that it's the oldest bar in Seattle. Of the other two competitors purporting the same thing one was closed for a time and the other started as a cafe and then turned into a saloon. The Central Saloon has been in continuous operation since 1892.

We toasted our first cross-country train trip and a bit of other good news we received while on the trip.

Next on the agenda was the market.

I follow the Instagram account of Sunny Honey Company and was eager to check out their shop inside. The store was adorable and just inside the main entrance!

We hadn't thought about plans for lunch but the Athenian was right there when we came out of the honey store.

A place that's been in business this long has to be good, right?

We popped inside for our first seafood. We grabbed a couple of stools at the counter where we could watch the meals being prepared. I like a place where you can see what they are doing with your food. My husband ordered the seafood stew and I had the Alaskan cod fish and chips. While we were waiting for our food my husband nudged me and pointed to a little sign at his seat.

I remembered the scene! It's the part where Jay (Rob Reiner) is having the modern dating discussion with Sam (Tom Hanks) I love happy travel accidents! 

After lunch we had fun walking around, shopping, and taking in the sights.

I was on the hunt for bee related products everywhere we went.

Seattle did not disappoint!

We ended the day with dinner at The Pike Brewing Co. The next day we started our day with a visit to the extremely popular Biscuit Bitch, more about it in the next post, just around the corner from our hotel. Then it was a quick Lyft ride to the Space Needle. Our driver bemoaned the cloudy weather and tried to talk us out of wasting our money. When we arrived it looked like he was right. 

Would it be a waste of time and money to buy a ticket? We decided to give it a try. At least we could say we'd been to the Space Needle. We bought the combo Chihuly Garden/Space Needle combo ticket at a kiosk and went to the glass museum first.

This last one looks very similar to a ceramic piece my son made for my garden when he was in college!

While it looked like the clouds were parting as we enjoyed the garden by the time we were in line to go up in the elevator the attendant informed us that the visibility at the top was 0% and that she'd have refunded our ticket except that we bought it at Chihuly Garden instead of the Space Needle.

Whatever. We're here. (Travel tip: "whatever" is a super helpful travel attitude)

One bright spot was that it wasn't crowded and we were in line for about ten minutes. We rode up the elevator and the doors opened to reveal...

she was right. We couldn't see anything.

Still, there was a glass floor and looking down was kind of cool if somewhat foggy.

We milled around. We sat on the glass floor with all the other tourists.

We grabbed some local drinks.

And then as if by magic the clouds not only parted but moved out completely giving us a full and complete view for miles.

We were really happy we didn't ditch our plans for the day.

Because it wasn't crowded we chatted with other tourists and enjoyed our drinks while I did a complete rotation time lapse. Then back on the ground, we roamed the surrounding area.

Though we had taken Lyft from Pioneer Square to the Space Needle we spent the rest of the day meandering back toward our hotel, shopping, drinking coffee, and eating along the way.

It was a fun and relaxing day. Seattle is a great city for combining plenty of interesting things to do and also taking your time to stroll and discover. We also found it to be a very friendly city. The locals love to tell you about the next great restaurant you should try or thing you should do. If you love coffee or craft beers it should be at the top of your list.

Happy Travels, Y'all! 



  1. I live on an island west of Seattle and reading your travel diary made me smile. It was wonderful remembering what I’ve seen and loved through your eyes.

  2. Which Island? We took the ferry to Bainbridge but we just had a couple of drinks and returned since it was the only time during the trip that it rained, except at night.


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