Although this is not a “food only” post, our visit to Seattle ended up focusing on the edible pleasures, rather than its other attractions. Maybe because we’ve been on the road for more than a week non-stop – and although we never had a bad meal – the food along rural roads tend to be the same. Also we were so overwhelmed by Yellowstone and Glacier, we were tired from the driving, hence we took it easy and enjoyed being back in a big city with all its comforts. Moreover, my fiance and I love every kind of Asian food and knew we’ll be in paradise in the cities of the PNW (Pacific Northwest) thanks to its big Asian communities. Our short time doesn’t pay enough tribute to the city but at least we got a good first impression!
Massive Mount Rainier is an impressive eye-catcher and belongs to THE landmarks of Seattle’s skyline, next to the Space Needle, the Great Wheel and the iconic stadium. Despite its uncharming nickname Rain City, we’ve been very lucky with the weather!
When you’re hungry, Seattle’s first address for market-fresh food is the Pike Place Market near the waterfront. The always-busy market has a huge culinary offer for every taste but seafood is the main drawer. Besides the vendors, there’s plenty of seafood bars that serve you the freshest catch! And even if you’re not hungry, the market doesn’t only have food but all kind of shops. Don’t miss Golden Age, they claim to be the world’s oldest comic shop (!) – and whether this is true or not – they certainly have lots of cool stuff, not only for geeks 😉
Seattle’s salmon is world-famous, so we knew what we were going for…
Chowders are another big thing there – in fact they’re so popular that people line up at Pike Place Chowder before they even open… My fiance insisted to do the same to get the chowder sample (clam, salmon, mixed, lobster). They were certainly tasty but I’m not sure if they were worth to stand in line for. If you really like chowder that might be a different story, personally I quite didn’t get the hype 😛
Once you get out of the market you can’t overlook this rather unappetizing sight: What started with a few chewing gums on the wall went out of control and every effort of the city government to clean the mess have been quite unsuccessful… Today it’s a tourist attraction!
But Seattle isn’t only about seafood and coffee (which I’ll come to later) but also has some charm and history: The oldest neighbourhood of Pioneer Square is a hot spot for visitors and locals thanks to cool bars, coffee shops and art galleries. It certainly is a hip place to grab a drink and take a walk!
There’s also a free and informative museum that’ll tell you more about Seattle’s history: The Klondike Gold Rush Museum displays the city’s past as a starting point for men and women who tried their luck in the gold fields of Yukon. Even if you’re not into museums, this one is well worth a visit!
We happened to be in Seattle during the American Solar Eclipse on August 21st. It was a huge spectacular all over the country, and although Seattle wasn’t in the path of totality, we noticed a remarkable change in the amount of sunlight. As we were totally unprepared for this event, there was no way to see the eclipse other than through a lens reflection on my phone and the crescent-shaped shadows of the trees. Nevertheless a pretty cool sight!
A world-famous coffee shop chain caused a massive coffee hype in the city of its origin. Today the café scene of Seattle has way more to offer than Starbucks, but Starbucks built up quite an empire there. You can either line up at the first location near the market or straight head to the temple for coffee junkies: The Starbucks Reserve is more than your average neighbourhood coffee shop! Coffee shop might be a slight understatement actually – it’s an incredibly well designed tasting room, roaster and coffee theme park!
But I don’t drink coffee (unfortunately), so let’s get back to the food 😉 Did I mention how great the Asian restaurant scene is? For a casual but refined Japanese dinner experience check out Maneki in the historic Japanese district. It’s a very popular place, so reservations are a must!
To me, the most beautiful part was the Waterfront Park. The fresh air, the clearing morning fog and the mountain views where such a nice contrast to the skyscrapers of downtown Seattle. I love cities that are so close to nature and I wish to return one day to see more of it.
- Seattle’s hotels are EXPENSIVE and can easily keep up with NYC prices! It’s better to book early to get deals or consider to stay a further outside the centre.
- Public transportation is inexpensive and works efficiently. The light rail connects SeaTac Airport with all the important places in the city, more information you’ll find here.
- Despite a high living standard, developed and modern infrastructure (it’s also the home of UPS, Amazon, Boeing) there’s a high amount of homeless people on the streets unfortunately. It didn’t feel unsafe but don’t be surprised to see tents and temporary shelters in the middle of the city.
Have you been to Seattle? What shouldn’t be missed next time?