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Portland/Seattle need itinerary and hotel suggestions

Portland/Seattle need itinerary and hotel suggestions

Old Feb 21st, 2014, 06:53 AM
  #1  
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Portland/Seattle need itinerary and hotel suggestions

Planning our trip for mid June. 4 days in Portland then drive to Seattle on the 5th day and 4 days in Seattle. Figure we will have a car for the last 2 days in Portland to get around outside the city, focusing more on city sites the first 2 days. Don't think we need to have car in Seattle. Want to do wineries in Portland area, Columbia River gorge and see Oregon coast. Have never been to this area so would love some suggestions for hotels in both cities - good/ central locations, at least 4 star. In Portland our young adult daughter will be with us but not in Seattle. Also need help with itinerary - what to do when, and how to work in the driving.
Thanks in advance!
mdmom is offline  
Old Feb 21st, 2014, 08:06 AM
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Why don't you think you'd need the car in Seattle? Seattle has as many if not more places to visit outside the city where a car is necessary than Portland - Whidbey Island, Snoqualmie Falls - not to mention many of Seattle's marvelous neighborhoods and parks. Plus, frankly, mid-June most years is still the rainy season. (Not cold nor constant rain, but the common saying here is that summer starts July 5th.)

The car gives you the freedom to stay outside the downtown core, where summer hotel prices skyrocket due to cruise passengers (those without cars) bidding up the cost. Yes, you may need to pay $20 for a day's parking downtown (to visit the Pike market, Space Needle, whatever) but you'll easily save that in hotel costs if you stay someplace outside the commercial core. (There are a number of hotels on the fringes of downtown, but with excellent public transport access, with very cheap or free parking; I'm not suggesting staying in the suburbs.) Even paying a hotel $20 a night a couple of times for parking will even out the cost of a cab to the airport when it's time to leave.

The Oregon coast is a very long day trip from Portland, although in mid-June you'll have long daylight hours. With wanting to see the Gorge and some wineries, I don't think you have enough time to include the coast. And you might look instead at wineries farther east up the Columbia Gorge - at Maryhill for example (close to the marvelous Maryhill Museum.) You could even include Maryhill and the Yakima Valley wine area by traveling to Seattle via the Gorge then (beautiful) US 97 to I-90, crossing the Cascades into Seattle rather than traveling the boring and trafficky I-5 route.
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Old Feb 21st, 2014, 01:35 PM
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The Gorge is 1/2 day to see the waterfalls, coast a day and wineries a day. I think the coast/Cannon Beach/Ecola park is worth a day trip, about a 90 min drive each way. If you go to the wineries around Dundee there's a ton of great choices but you probably want to pick 3 as they all charge tasting fees now unless you are member and give some good pours. I like Penner Ash and Solena but there are others closer to Hwy 99.
For Portland, Saturday/Sunday market, Saturday Farmers Mkt, Japaneses garden, NW 23rd shopping, downtown walking around pioneer square/food carts/Pearl area galleries, waterfront, maybe the jet boat tour. Can take many days to do Portland proper so pick your activities and enjoy!
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Old Feb 21st, 2014, 02:34 PM
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For city only you don't even need a car. Ride on the TriMet red line from PDX to downtown Portland. When you are ready to leave Portland take an Amtrak Cascades train to Seattle. Depending on your hotel choices, you might need a taxi even though there are choices within walking distance of the light rail and bus system. The red line east end is right outside the baggage claim at PDX.
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Old Feb 21st, 2014, 02:48 PM
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I loved the Portland Monaco. Great service and location.
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Old Feb 22nd, 2014, 02:55 PM
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Thanks so much - I have heard very good things about the Monaco too, going to check it out. Love Kimpton hotels.
Is it feasible at all to drive to Cannon Beach and then go on to Seattle in one day? Any specific hotel recommendations for Seattle? I know we want to do whale watching/ San Juan islands in Seattle, Pike mkt. One of the reasons we wanted to stay central was to have restaurants/ coffee shops within walking distance.
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Old Feb 23rd, 2014, 10:00 AM
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Seattle hotel suggestions: The Mayflower Park Hotel, Inn at the Market, Hotel Andra, Alexis, Four Seasons, Hotel 1000, Arctic Club.

Cannon Beach to Seattle is doable but a long drive (7-8 hrs??).

San Juan islands would need a car and is more than a day trip from Seattle (takes 3+ hrs each way to get there and back, including drive, ferry, etc.)
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Old Feb 23rd, 2014, 03:16 PM
  #8  
mms
 
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Yes, the Monaco is a great place here. Even though we live here, that is our goo place for when we stay in downtown for special events..

The coast is only 90 minutes from Portland, so a day trip is very easy. If you decide to go from Cannon Beach to Seattle it is only 4 hours.

In Seattle we have had great stays at the Alexis and the Mayflower.
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Old Feb 23rd, 2014, 04:24 PM
  #9  
sum
 
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The Inn at the Market and Hotel 1000 are my favorites downtown. If you all have different sleeping schedules, you might prefer Hotel 1000 as there's a nice sitting area off the lobby with good coffee and snacks for the early riser. I certainly appreciated it.
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Old Feb 24th, 2014, 09:32 AM
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Thanks mms for the corrected time frame. I didn't realize Cannon Beach was only 1 hour from Portland? (making Seattle Cannon Beach only 4 hours total).
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Old Feb 24th, 2014, 10:33 AM
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If going directly from Seattle to Cannon Beach you can cross the bridge at Kelso and go through Astoria to skip Portland.
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Old Feb 24th, 2014, 11:17 AM
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I didn't realize Cannon Beach was only 1 hour from Portland? (making Seattle Cannon Beach only 4 hours total).

It's not, it's 90 min. from Portland. It's less than 4 hours from Seattle (3 1/2 sometimes) because it's north of Portland, so you cut over somewhere (Longview or even Olympia) and follow 101 over the Megler bridge, rather than doubling back from Portland.
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Old Feb 24th, 2014, 04:42 PM
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I can't tell from your description exactly how many nights you have, but it sounds like you have 9 nights at the most. Mid June probably isn't the best time for Mt. Rainier National Park, or I would definitely say it is a must-see between Portland and Seattle. Much of the beauty of Oregon and Washington is outside our cities; why not spend two nights in Cannon Beach, for example, and then head up to Seattle?

With your time-frame, the best way to do the whale watching in the San Juans might be taking the Victoria Clipper whale-watching day trip (see their website) from downtown Seattle to Friday Harbor, which would give you a flavor of the San Juans without having to do a road trip. Victoria Clipper also offers an overnight whale watching trip if you have the time.
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Old Feb 24th, 2014, 05:17 PM
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I am an Alexis [Kimpton] fan; have stayed there twice and treated like royalty. Great location.
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