Where to go near Seattle?

Old Apr 9th, 2012, 02:25 PM
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Speaking of Bainbridge Island, would that be worth a day trip? How about the wineries in Woodinville?
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Old Apr 9th, 2012, 02:56 PM
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Bravo for your instinct to make it clear where you're from, so as to help us consider possible contrasts. Ditto your telling of having been to Vancouver and Victoria.

Research shows that the highest point in New York State is a modest 5344 feet, so I still feel strongly that some of the sights in the mountain areas of Washington State would hold considerable appeal for you.

Mount Rainier is the most obvious, of course... and for that a tourist tends to make a long day-trip, most typically circling around the western side to reach Paradise, and then continuing around the mountain to the east upon return toward the Seattle area. (the main road east of Mount Rainier reaches 5430 feet of elevation on the highway)

Paradise, Mount Rainier is known as "the snowiest place on earth" (where regular, official snowpack measurements are taken).

My idea of Winthrop, WA is 200 miles and 3 hours, 40 minutes of driving time from Seattle.

It is quite interesting to my mind to contemplate a lengthy trip TO this area by someone who has already done Vancouver and Victoria. Your wish for a brief-ish getaway from Seattle makes me think in directions different from Vancouver, for a change.

In New York, you've certainly got "coast", so that holds no exceptional appeal out here. If you had a bunch of teenage girls you'd probably go to "Forks", (and at least it would be decided FOR you that way).

If, somehow, you could finesse Whidbey Island AND the North Cascades Highway together, you'd maybe ferry TO Clinton, WA (Whidbey Island) from Everett, and then drive northward, and find yourself in JUST the optimum spot to continue on through wonderful "Sedro-Woolley" and through Concrete, WA ("The Center of the Known Universe").

Oh, hey, while I'm here... do some web research on Winthrop, WA itself... because it is the cutest little town. While perhaps NOT a direct 'destination' were it not merely out the other end of the North Cascades Highway, it certainly adds plenty to the appeal of a trip in that direction.

It is a minor convenience and a major accomplishment for the likes of me, that I actually circled Mount Rainier, and went to Paradise... AND went round-trip on the North Cascades Highway last summer, so both are fresh in my mind.

There were so many times along my path through the North Cascades that I just stopped in awe of the scenery... that I still think that Winthrop is a very suitable destination for you. (I even had breakfast in a cutesy little eatery in Winthrop, that was doing a lively & touristy business on a Sunday morning).
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Old Apr 9th, 2012, 03:12 PM
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IMHO, Bainbridge Island's only attraction is the ferry ride going and coming. The town itself does not attract me, and BI is just a bedroom community for Seattle.
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Old Apr 10th, 2012, 04:11 AM
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Hey thanks again. The reason for our trip is to spend time with our son who is a student at the University. Unfortunately, being new to the area, he doesn't really know what we can do while we're out there. I am looking for some possibilities either day trips or a 2 night getaway so that we don't have a solid week just in downtown Seattle. However, I expect that there are more things to do right in Seattle for the day that I don't even know about. I am also researching food tours, brewery tours, etc. If we plan a few things right in the city and then maybe have a day trip to one of the areas mentioned above, it should keep us busy for a week.
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Old Apr 10th, 2012, 07:52 AM
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Your University student son should know about the Lake Washington park: http://depts.washington.edu/uwbg/gardens/wpa.shtml
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Old Apr 10th, 2012, 03:17 PM
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Thanks for the additional data... and I suspect that, looking back from 10 months or 10 YEARS later, your son might not otherwise have been drawn to explore the North Cascades Highway, even though it is relatively nearby.

It couldn't hurt him to be made aware first-hand of the impressive scenery nearby. The North Cascades Highway itself really does sport lots of mountain and water scenery. Go to YouTube and type in "Tiffany Mountain" to gain a sense for areas nearby to Winthrop, WA.

Winthrop sits at 1768 feet above sea level. You can drive in nearby forest to the 6520-foot level, and then take an easy, yet steep-in-places hike to the 8200-foot peak of Tiffany Mountain, where again you're at the highest spot for nearly 18 miles around. (That makes for something to DO on the full day if opting for two nights in Winthrop)

So again, maybe a night toward the north end of Whidbey Island (after some of a day spent exploring/touring there)... and then over the N. Cascades after an early start. Two nights in Winthrop upon arrival there. Then back via the same or a different route, depending upon your whim.

Perhaps Mount Rainier is a day trip your son will take at some other point during his time in Washington State?
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Old Apr 10th, 2012, 03:28 PM
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Thanks, I will check it out. Any ideas for what to do the days we stay in Seattle? We have already done the typical tourist stuff on our last visit.
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Old Apr 10th, 2012, 08:41 PM
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We always enjoy Seattle.

Nearby: Snoqualmie Falls was lovely and there is a restaurant that looks over the top of the falls. We didn't eat there but have heard it's good. A Seattle poster can tell you better, but my recollection is that it's 30-40 minutes from downtown in reasonable traffic. It is not an all day event though.

We loved the zoo--we had never seen a Komodo Dragon and we signed up to feed the giraffes. Quite memorable.

Took the small boat to the island for a Native American Salmonbake and storytelling. We all loved it. My kids thought there should be more stories though.

I wanted to see the locks for the boats being raised and lowered but didn't have the time.
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