As more places are opening up this summer, it's so nice to be able to travel once again!
My husband and I recently traveled to Seattle to visit his family that we haven't seen since pre-covid and it was so lovely. I've been going to Seattle for nine years now and it never ceases to amaze me. If you're never been before, there's nothing like looking around and seeing mountain ranges and water-front views. It truly is beautiful.
In addition to catching up with friends and family this time around, we explored new areas of Washington and it was so fun to go beyond the touristy spots. I wanted to share some highlights of things we did and ate if Seattle is ever on your radar of places to visit (p.s. if it's not, it should be)!
Downtown Seattle: To Do & Eat
Pike Place Market: I know it's an obvious one, but I absolutely love it! We love to start on one end of the market and take our time going past the local artisan stands, endless amounts of flower tubs, variety of seafood and other fresh foods.
A few more Pike Place Favorites...
-The Original Starbucks: If you're a coffee lover, it's pretty cool to check the first-ever Starbucks shop! There's always a long line so if you don't feel like going inside, you can walk right by and snap a pic.
-Beecher's Cheese: This one's for cheese lovers! Their grilled cheese and mac and cheese are to die for.
-Place Pigalle: Another gem located right in the market. The food is super fresh and you get views of the water and ferris wheel.
-The Pink Door: Super cute and chic place. I would recommend making a reservation ahead of time since they're usually busy.
The Seattle Great Wheel: Located at 1301 Alaskan Way, Seattle, WA 98101 (behind the Market).
Bainbridge Island: If you have a free on your trip, I would highly recommend taking the ferry to Bainbridge Island. It's only 35 minutes and if the weather is nice, you can sit outside and admire the amazing skyline view of the city. Once you get to Bainbridge, you can either walk or shuttle into the cute town where there's a main strip of boutiques and other quirky stores. My favorite place to eat there is Bruciato (a cute and chic farm-to-table restaurant).
San Juan Islands: To Do & Eat
This was my first time visiting the San Juan Islands and I really hope it won't be my last! From the breathtaking ferry ride to exploring the actual San Juan island, it was such a lovely experience. If you take the clipper directly from Seattle to Friday Harbor (which is where we went), it's about a two hour ferry ride. We were there for two days and this is what we did:
Friday Harbor: We stayed at the San Juan Inn Collection bed & breakfast right in town and it was a great location. It's walking distance to the town where there's restaurants, boutiques and other shops.
e-bike Rentals: For the second day we were there, my in-laws, husband and I rented e-bikes for the day (available right in town) and it was one of my favorite parts of the whole trip. If you're not looking to break a sweat (I relied more on the electric than the peddling part I admit 😂), then this is a great and affordable way to really explore the island! There's a map that's attached the the bike so you can see what the best routes are.
Pelindaba Lavender Farm: One of the places we biked to was the lavender farm on the island. The perfect time of the year to go is in July, so we were just a few weeks shy of the bushes being in full bloom. You can walk around the farm for free and check out the cute shop filled with lavender goodies. They also have chocolate lavender ice cream that you can buy that was really good!
Downriggers: Located at 10 Front St, Friday Harbor, WA 98250.
This place is definitely a hot spot in the village. The views, food and cocktails are great!
Roche Harbor: Though we spent most of our time around Friday Harbor, we ventured off to the other side of the island (about a 30 minute drive) for dinner. The drive there is so beautiful as you can see the Canadian border lined with snow capped mountains and water.
As soon as you drive into the little town, you immediately feel like you're in a Disney movie. The houses are perfectly manicured and the cobblestone road takes you to a bistro-light filled street. We had dinner at McMillin's and enjoyed the sunset while drinking cocktails and crab-stuffed scallops (yeah, that's a thing). We ordered a few appetizers and had entrées and everything was so good.