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Enjoying the vibes of Seattle

Making my around the city of Seattle makes me realise how beautiful this place is in USA and Relaxing at the same time.

i.c Golina

I love travelling to America. It has a wonderful blend of ancient history from South to modern cities of hustle and bustle culture to the North and in between the wild, wild west and desert. I just love visiting USA and over the last 15 years I have been a regular visitor to various parts of America. In every places I visited it always been exciting and fun to me. Like many other destinations around the world I have re-visited many places and others that I may or may not visit in the future. Yes, America is a great country with so many destinations to visit that suits your appetite for travelling.

 

My Perception on Seattle

After many weeks of travelling around Europe, it was time to re-visit Seattle. Just within two hours flight from Los Angeles to Seattle, we landed in Seattle just after lunch. As I made my long walk to the terminal exit with my travelling suitcase on one hand and a backpack on the other, I was warmly greeted by my host and friends of 15 years – Dennis and Donna. Like all major international airports, winding through long corridors, stairways and escalators are major part of travelling experience at the airports – Yes, airports are worse places where I get my adrenaline-rush walking exercises. Though, I had a light snack during the flight but I needed to get my digestive system a work-out as we headed towards the car. We drove just a few kilometres drive away from the airport, we ended up at Starbucks for a late lunch – this means that we were going to have a very light dinner that evening as Donna and Dennis are very conscious of their dietary intake. Having light dinner in the evening after travelling for weeks before arriving in United States was just what I needed for a good night sleep.

View of the city

Yes, been very familiar with Seattle’s major tourist attraction sites but on this occasion, I wanted to spend more time with my friends who call Seattle home now after living many years in California – San Diego. My hosts and friends of many years – Donna and Dennis have a very expensive taste on how to entertain their guests after both retiring from their company as directors. Yes, we had fine dining and wining from expensive restaurants to cafes and takeaways in various locations around Seattle. One of my favourite place to go for dinner in Seattle is Seattle’s waterfront. It has an eclectic mixture of uses, from ocean-going freighters and state ferries crossing Puget Sound at one end to posh hotels and great seafood restaurants at the other. In between there are various shops from souvenir shops to book stores, giant Ferris wheel, Seattle aquarium to take-away restaurants. While there, we grabbed some take-away food and headed to the waterfront park to take in the panoramic views while indulging ourselves in fresh seafood dishes. To me, relaxation doesn’t get much better than this and this is what I wanted to do while in Seattle.

Seattle Downtown Waterfront

One of the other most beautiful place we visited was Mt. Rainier National Park. Donna and Dennis wanted me to escape the beauty of city’s most scenic tourist attraction sites and headed to this place. I must say, this was very best part of Seattle. I would highly recommend anyone, not to miss this place, it is truly wonderful. It is a “must see” place in Seattle. This park offers breathtaking views of trees, flowers and animals too. To experience the beauty of this nationally preserved outdoor area was truly an experience of its own.

The following day, while my friends had few businesses to do for couple of days, even though both retired, it gave me a chance to do something on my own. It was time to do a tour of local parks and trails outside the city areas where tourists don’t get to see. I was quite happy to explore more of the city’s parks and gardens on my own using various form of public transportations – buses, rails and ferries. Like all destinations in every cities I have visited, using public transportation have been my only form of travel. It is a great way to get introduced to the area. I tried to relax more and avoid hectic itineraries. My intention was to take a break from visiting major tourist sites and attractions and tried to seek out hidden places that don’t make it into the guidebooks – and Seattle is full of them. My friends offered to use one of their cars but for me, driving any form of vehicle throughout America, is a recipe for crash. I am still not comfortable driving on the left-side of the road and probably never will. 

I first came to Seattle in 2005, again in 2010 and 2011. During those times, I visited most of the “most visited” tourist attraction sites in Seattle. It is no secret that Seattle is undeniably a beautiful city with a wide variety of activities to do that is sure to please everyone, even the most picky of travellers. The city offers plenty of trails for bike riding and a world-class zoo that features animals in their native habitat. Seattle, being home to Boeing aircraft, Starbucks and the most famous landmark is the towering Space Needle, which features an observation deck and revolving restaurant. It has numerous outstanding art galleries and restaurants overlooking the water. I can see why it receives thousands of tourists each year. 

View of Seattle city across the sea

Though Space Needle is the most famous landmark in Seattle but the largest tourist attraction is the Pike Place. It is one of America’s oldest farmer’s markets as well as the site of the city’s famous fish market and the first Starbuck’s Coffee Shop. Pike Place Market got its start in the early 1900s when housewives revolted against rising prices of onions in grocery stores. Today, it’s one of the biggest tourist draws not only in Seattle, but also Washington State. Gorgeous fresh produce looks like it might have been arranged by an artist. Fish fly through the air as fish mongers toss it from icy trays to the wrapping stand. Funky boutiques can be found on lower floors; cheese and bread shops are in an annex across the street. Located in downtown Seattle, the market is open daily. Pike Place Market is also home to the first Starbucks store. Established in 1971 it is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Seattle.

What to see and do

Travellers planning to include Seattle in their travel itinerary for the first time, visiting Pioneer Square and the Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park which offer historical buildings and artefacts as a starting point to learn about the city’s history. Home to the Boeing Factory, taking a tour of the factory and watching how airplanes being built is something that every tourists should see. However, there are number of art galleries and museums in Seattle which exhibits local history, science, art and Nordic heritage as well as rock and roll music. Seattle also features a lively nightlife scene with a variety of pubs, nightclubs, dance clubs, theatres and opera houses. For those who want a bit of adventure, the Urban parks and nature sanctuaries like the Discovery Park and Green Lake offer hiking trails, outdoor adventure and wildlife. With close proximity to the mountains and ocean, all tourists can enjoy hiking, snow skiing, sailing, kayaking and swimming. If any of this activities is too strenuous, then take a lazily stroll to the Woodland Park Zoo and the Seattle Aquarium which are both outstanding places to encounter land and marine animals.

Boeing Factory

One of the things that I always enjoy doing and find it more relaxing for me is reading. Seattle has the most amazing and eye-catching public library structure. Whilst I was there, I spent a lot of time there reading, especially first part of the morning before setting off to see other places of interests without the crowds. Since Dennis and Donna are retired couple, they had enough time in their hand to visit many areas outside the city area where public transport is inaccessible.

Perhaps best of all, I enjoyed the lunch outs and spending the evenings at home by the pool side with glass of gold-rush cocktail.

From personal perspective: For me re-visiting many places is always exciting because I tend to visit other fascinating and interesting areas I haven’t been to due to limited time on my first visit. Re-visiting means I am familiar with the place and it gives me more time to relax and wine and dine without been rushed, panic or confusion.

 

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