seattle help

May 19th, 2004, 02:19 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 41
seattle help

I will be in Seattle for a 3 day visit. I leave in two days and haven't had the chance to plan an itinerary for a group of 8 adults. This will be the first trip for all of us to Seattle. What are the sights that we should not miss. Also would a day trip to Buchart be worth it considering the price of traveling there and time constraints? Also would like to see tulip fields. How far would that be from seatac? Please help...
dakine is offline  
May 19th, 2004, 02:28 PM
Join Date: Nov 2003
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Lucky you! Seattle is beautiful. Don't miss The Space Needle, Pike Place Market, a ferry ride to Bainbridge Island. Where are you staying? ***kim***
kimamom is offline  
May 19th, 2004, 02:29 PM
Join Date: Jul 2003
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The Skagit tulip fields are about a two-hour drive from downtown Seattle, but I think they are well past their prime.

Buchart Gardens are lovely, but to try to do them in a day would not be my idea of a good time.

Sensible day trips from SeaTac include Mt. Rainier; or Port Townsend and Hurricane Ridge on the Olypic Peninsula; or a drive across Snoqualmie Pass and Blewett Pass to Leavenworth for lunch, returning on Route 2 via Stevens Pass.

Highlights in Seattle include the Pike Place Market, Pioneer Square, the Waterfront, and Seattle Center (where the Space Needle is).

Nice things to do include the Argosy cruise through the locks, lunch at Salty's in Alki, and the Woodlawn Park Zoo which has beautiful grounds.
jimshep is offline  
May 19th, 2004, 02:36 PM
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thanks for the speedy replies.

Kim, I will be staying at a hotel by the seatac airport. You mentioned a ferry ride to Bainbridge. What are the attractions to see there?

Also is going to the aquarium a "must see"? Is there another gardens besides Buchart that you would recommend visiting?
dakine is offline  
May 19th, 2004, 03:03 PM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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Am I assuming 2 or more cars? One big minivan? No car?

Okay, ideas. Too late for tulips, sorry. All you'd see now are tulip stumps.

Butchart Gardens on Vancouver Island is a very long and rather expensive day trip - you can take the Victoria Clipper foot ferry then a bus to the gardens, or you can fly on a floatplane from Lake Union in Seattle - a fraction of the time, lots of fun, but rather costly.

But if you're set on seeing gardens, then you can combine a (mandatory) outing on a ferryboat with a great garden tour. Take the ferry from downtown Seattle to Bainbridge Island, then travel to the Bloedel Reserve, a marvelous private garden that in its way is equally - maybe more - interesting than the rather commercial Butchart Gardens. Reservations are needed - go to for info.

With only 3 days I'd suggest limiting your out-of-town jaunts, depending on your group's (presumably varied with 8) tastes. It's still rather early for Mt. Rainier; the Olympic Peninsula is doable but logistics for 8 become complicated, but a day outing to Whidbey Island and Port Townsend could be fun, especially to the village of Langley on Whidbey, cute shops and cafes on the waterfront.

In town, the Pike Market is in full bloom and can easily take up half or a whole day. The new central library, proclaimed by the architecture critic for the NY Times to be the most significant new building he's reviewed in over 30 years, opens this weekend; there are various arts and performing arts activities going on (go to for a guide.)

There are excellent museums and galleries, including a couple in Tacoma such as the Museum of Glass, that are very interesting, or the Museum of Flight at Boeing Field in Seattle, now second only to the Smithsonian in terms of collection (and way less daunting.)

Tons of restaurants with views if you want, the Mariners are playing something that looks like baseball at Safeco Field this weekend (guess it's rebuilding time - who knew?) or you can explore Seattle's wonderful heritage of parks, some designed by the Olmstead Bros.

Shopping, of course - Nordie's HQ, REI's HQ, plenty of places to enhance the local economy, thanks.

The Seattle International Film Festival, now one of the biggest in the world, is in full swing - might be good if the weather turns poopy, a risk at any time but especially in the spring - see

You can go down to the central waterfront and wave to the folks on the cruise ships as they pull away. No confetti allowed, sadly - better to recycle it, remember this is ecotopia.

You might have a kickoff rendezvous on Saturday morning at Salty's on Alki - lavish brunch buffet and best view in town (just recently added Saturday AM buffets to Sunday's) as a planning session -

Do save some time to tour the neighborhoods a little - all the rhododendrons are now in bloom and the city is gorgeous.

Let us know if you have any particular interests. Happy planning.
Gardyloo is online now  
May 19th, 2004, 03:58 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 41
Thanks Gardyloo for all your wonderful suggestions, although I'm disappointed about the tulip stumps. I was looking forward to seeing some especially since we don't have those here in Hawaii.

We will be renting two vehicles. Regarding parking, is it going to be a problem at these "tourist" places? Or should we opt to use public transportation while we are in the downtown area?

Also we will be in Seattle departing & arriving from a cruise. Any suggestions of reasonable shuttle services from a hotel in the airport area to the pier? Or is taking a taxi a better idea?
dakine is offline  

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