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First time Seattle visitors for 2 days end of June 2012

First time Seattle visitors for 2 days end of June 2012

Old Jan 1st, 2012, 01:58 PM
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First time Seattle visitors for 2 days end of June 2012

My wife and I will be flying into Seattle the end of June for a first time, 2 day visit, prior to a cruise. Looking for some suggestions for a downtown hotel and a suggested itinerary. What can we see and do to experience the city? Any good dining recommendations?
Any help will be appreciated.

Thanks in advance for your help.
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Old Jan 1st, 2012, 04:23 PM
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If you're looking for a chain, DW and I like both the Hilton and the Sheraton downtown. The Edgewater is good for pre-cruise because you're closer to the pier.

The usuak first time experiences include Pike Place Market, Pioneer Square, the waterfront and Space Needle. IMO the Space Needle is interesting, but just buy a ticket to the top, the restaurant meal from the top is far from the best Seattle does.
We also enjoyed a visit to the Music Experience museum at Seattle Place and Ballard Locks with it's fish ladder.
A couple of good lunch spots are the Steelhead Diner and Kell's Irsh pub, both near Pike Place Market. They do dinner as well, but haven't tried them for that. Lowell's Restaurant and Bar in the Market is outstanding.
It's out of the way, but Salty's on Alki Beach offers great seafood and a view across the bay that's hard to beat. Also, Wild Ginger for Asian food
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Old Jan 2nd, 2012, 12:28 PM
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What price range for the hotel?

The Mayflower Park and the Warwick are my two favorite go-to recommendations fora mid-priced hotel in downtown Seattle. But if your budget is larger look at Inn at the Market, Hotel Andra, Hotel 1000, Arctic Club, Four Seasons, Sorrento, and Fairmont Olympic.

With only two days - Pike Place Market, Pioneer Square historic district, the Space Needle/Seattle Center, and the Waterfront are the highlights most people choose.

Dining downtown I like: Dahlia Lounge, Steelhead Diner, Il Bistro, Assagio's, Etta's Seafood, Anthony's Pier 66, Cutter's Bayhouse, Andaluca.
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Old Jan 2nd, 2012, 04:16 PM
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Check Fairmont's website often for discounts, we got a fantastic deal a few years ago.
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Old Jan 2nd, 2012, 04:28 PM
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To these suggestions I would add taking a ferry to Bainbridge Island. It is a 30 minute ride each way. You will have great views of the Seattle skyline and, if it is clear, the Olympics to the west and the Cascades to the west--including Mt. Rainier.

HTTY
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Old Jan 2nd, 2012, 08:43 PM
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Jackz,

If budget is a concern, I would utilize Priceline.com for any 4-star (or 3-star, if 4 isn't available) hotel in the "DOWNTOWN-Pike Place" section.

As for itinerary, with just a couple of days, you could land in Seattle and fully occupy yourself with only the main tourist attractions: "Pike Place Market", "Space Needle", Ferry ride for mountain/water/skyline views, "Pioneer Square", etc.

Probably best not to get too 'cute' or fancy in planning a Seattle itinerary for two days. Just follow the crowd, so to speak. Although the end of June may bring a good mix of good weather and beating m-m-m-m-m-mOST of the tourist traffic.

On the downside, the grey and rainy season didn't exactly end until about the end of June in 2011.
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Old Jan 4th, 2012, 07:56 AM
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Thank you all for the suggestions and input.
What's the best way to get from the airport to downtown? How far is it? I've read that public transportation is the way to go for a 2 day visit, is that correct?
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Old Jan 4th, 2012, 07:59 AM
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The light rail from the airport to downtown! Easy, fast, and I think, $2.25 per ride.
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Old Jan 4th, 2012, 11:21 AM
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SeaTac airport is 14 miles south of downtown Seattle.

HTTY
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Old Jan 6th, 2012, 07:19 AM
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Depends on how big your luggage is. The new LightRail is great if you're travelling with just one small roller, but it does require a bit of walking, both from the terminal at SeaTac then on the other end once you're downtown. I've seen people doing it with really large suitcases but honestly, if that were me, I'd use a taxi instead. LightRail takes about 40 mins. to get downtown. A taxi 20-25 mins.
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Old Jan 6th, 2012, 07:39 AM
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We did hotwire and were 3 blocks fromm Pike Place Market.

There is one venue that I absolutely suggest to everyone that goes to Seattle. It's an outstanding experience and not over-priced either.

Do the food tour. The one that takes about 10 people through a 2 or 3 hour Pike Place tasting. It's on our all time enjoy list of the top 10 city venture experiences we have had. SO is still ordering Chukar's every year at least once.
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Old Jan 6th, 2012, 07:40 AM
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And enjoy the FLOWERS!
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Old Jan 9th, 2012, 03:32 PM
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That food tour that was suggested sounds like fun. How do you make arrangements for that? What is the cost and what time of day do you go? There will be 8 in our group, we may be able to fill up an entire time.
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Old Jan 9th, 2012, 05:08 PM
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jackz, I heard about it here from a Seattle native.

It's truly fun. And the one we went on was not the Choc., gourmet, or wine specialty. But the longer combo of all. AND it was midday. And do not eat breafast. It ran about 2-1/2 hours, I believe.

We can't remember the name. I'll do a google and look at my threads and post again.
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Old Jan 9th, 2012, 05:16 PM
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http://www.fodors.com/community/unit...rip-report.cfm

That's my trip report. We go to 2 or 3 American cities every year for baseball and I do a report. I have a bunch of them on here under my JJ5.

Don't miss Bacco's for breakfast- right near the opening into that very market, Pike Place.

This is the tour we used:

http://www.savorseattletours.com/

It started around 10:30 am and ran more than 2 hours.

It was outstanding. Far beyond expectations. Salmon, chowder, you name it- russian pastry to Chukar's- we tasted all.
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Old Jan 10th, 2012, 01:01 PM
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I LOVE the Seattle Underground Tour which is located in Pioneer Square. Done in a very humorous way while still learning all the interesting and crazy history of the city (yes, you will actually go underground). With your group size especially, that would be a great and inexpensive thing for all to enjoy.

I ALWAYS recommend using Priceline - will save you a ton and we have never been unhappy with our hotels (it's hard to find a bad 4 star). You can utilize sites like www.betterbidding.com to take all the guess work out of Priceline. Also, I'd check Groupon and Living Social daily from now until your trip, as the Food Tours someone else mentioned are often featured on these sites (as well as great places to eat, tourist type activities, etc.).

Hope you have a great time in the city as well as your cruise!
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Old Jan 11th, 2012, 06:50 AM
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Having been to Seattle over 12 times, I highly recommend the Space Needle. When the line is too long for the observation deck ($), we take the free elevator to the restaurant and have lunch. Food is pretty good (seared Ahi tuna!) and you get the fabulous view from the revolving restaurant. Best way to see the harbor, Mt Rainier and the Cascades. We also feel that the cost of the elevator and the cost of lunch are comparable, so avoid the line and have lunch (you can see the menu at the bottom of the needle). After you eat, you can walk up the 1 flight of stairs and go to the observation deck anyway. We also like taking the ferry over to Alki Beach and walk to Salty's for a meal. The ferry is fast, inexpensive, runs often and it gets you out on the water. The view of the city skyline from West Seattle can't be beat. I agree with everyone else - see the waterfront, Pike's Market, Pioneer Square area. Fado's Irish Pub near Pioneer Square had Bloody Mary Sunday Brunch. You get to make your Bloody - the choice of fixings was unbelievable! The Arboretum is beautiful - nice for a stroll on a sunny day. The Museum of Flight is really interesting and well worth the visit, but might be too far from downtown on a 2 day trip. The Seattle Art Museum is great too. For dining I'd also add the Brooklyn Steak & Seafood House (near the Art Museum)- we like to sit at the counter and watch the chefs cook while we eat or sit in the oyster bar area. They always have the best selection of oysters and seafood. Food and service has always been perfect. If you are into food - head to Capitol Hill neighborhood - lots of restaurant choices. Have a great trip!
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Old Jan 11th, 2012, 07:10 AM
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We were in Seattle in July 2011, and really liked the Inn at Harbor Steps. It is an easy walk to the farmer's market, or a quick walk downhill or on the hotel elevator to get to the waterfront and ferry terminal.

We have also stayed at the Edgewater. It is a good hotel, and is directly next door to one of the cruise ship terminals. It is a longer walk (uphill)to get to sites. The Edgewater seems to get a lot of bookings for people who want easy transfer to a cruise. Expect long checkout times on cruise days.

On a nice day, it is a lot of fun to watch the boats at Ballard locks.

I would not recommend having a car. If you don't mind hilly walks or taking the bus, (free in the downtown area,) you can get to plenty of sites.
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Old Jan 11th, 2012, 07:16 AM
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The Alexis Hotel is really nice and conveniently located. We stayed there at the start of our honeymoon and we had a good experience.

We also spent the last night [after coming back from Vancouver] at Inn at the Market. It was a great location and a nice hotel, but they had tempurpedic mattresses and we hated sleeping on it. Not sure if they still have them, but that would keep me from staying there again.

We also really liked the Underground Tour. We took the Ferry to Salty's and had a great meal there.
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Old Jan 11th, 2012, 10:21 AM
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For walking tours Savor Seattle is an excellent company. There are also tours offered thru the Pike Place Market itself ("Market Heritage Tours") www.pikeplacemarket.org
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