Weekend in Seattle
About two years ago I published a blog about my three months long experience in Seattle. It´s been a while since, I returned back several times, spent the New Year´s Eve here and during one beautiful August day 2021 I moved back for a while. Why does it worth it to come to Seattle for a weekend at least? Let´s take a look at it together…
A Place, Where The Well-Known Movies Were Filmed
I think all of you know the movie Fifty Shades of Grey. Some of you might remember it just like I do – as wasted two hours of my life. Others might have liked it. I watched all of the possible and impossible Fifty Shades just because I wanted to see weather the myth about an ugly rainy weather in this city was real and guess what – in every scene it was either raining or after rain.
Another movie which was filmed here was about a short record. If you watched it, after seven days you´d die. Yes, I am talking about The Ring. The Ring wasn´t filmed only in Seattle but also in Oregon and in LA´s studio. For example, not even an hour away from here you can find Morgan Ranch. Unfortunately I couldn´t look up the location of Samara´s well (I guess it was recorded in LA´s studio) and the lighthouse is located in Newport, Oregon.
Let´s move back in time for a little bit more because the best comes at the end. Movies Sleepless in Seattle and 10 Things I Hate About You disprove the myths about the never ending rain and show you Seattle during beautiful sunny days. Moreover, after watching them you won´t regret your time spent by “doing nothing”… And that´s enough for the movie scene.
First Starbucks And Pike Place Market
Coffee lovers probably know very well that this is a birthplace of Starbucks. The very first Starbucks in the world is located here and once you are in this neighborhood, make sure to come with an empty stomach because this is the location of Pike Place Market.
Pike Place Market is a place where local farmers, craft men and business men meet. Everyone will find here something that interests them – fruit, vegetables, small snacks, restaurants with their specials, souvenirs or a fresh fish. And talking about fish – everyone who comes here, must experience these two things: Space Needle and throwing fish at Pike Place Fish Market.
I will talk about the Space Needle later. Talking about Pike Place Fish Market, every time when somebody buys a fish, before they wrap it for you a following show happens – throwing of this fish. Two staff people throw your fish between each other for several times while yelling something. After this show they wrap you your fish and you are all set. Isn´t it brilliant?
In Pike Place Market I highly recommend to visit Piroshky Piroshky and Beecher´s Handmade Cheese. Piroshky Piroshky is such a popular place that every time I passed by there was a queue of people. Their piroshky are really delicious and waiting in line really worth it. At Beecher´s you can see a big tube inside which a cheese is being done. Because they literally process and create the cheese here. And all I can say is – I have never had a better mac&cheese than this one. Their cheese is just amazing. Almost just like the Swiss cheese!
Talking about food, very popular is here the happy hour. Every day between 4pm and 7pm you can find a place where you can eat or drink (or get drunk) for a very little money. Locals and even tour guides will agree on this. What I experienced was that the meals were more like an appetizers but for the same price as you´d have paid in a restaurant for one meal, I paid for at least three meals. Final price was almost the same and you would leave with a gourmet experience. Or distilled. By the way did you know that if you can´t decide which beer/ ice cream you want to buy, you can ask for a free sample? Or maybe even four free samples? That worth it, right?
Also, in Seattle is very famous fast food Dick´s drive in (yes, you read it correctly). Within the whole US you´ll find just a few of them and most most of them are located actually here.
Space Needle, Columbia Center And Kerry Terrace
These are three places where you should go to have a nice view. I´m pretty sure, you have already heard of Space Needle. On the other side of the city there is the highest skyscraper Columbia Center. The view is similar, but the price not really…
In my eyes Space Needle looks something like more expensive version of Observation Deck UFO in Bratislava, Slovakia. Now, in 1962 the entrance fee was only $1, these days it is $35. But if the weather is nice, you´ll have a nice experience.
To make it fair, I went to Sky View Observatory in Columbia Center as well (actually twice) where I didn´t wait in a line, saved up some money, and enjoyed a wonderful view, too. Also, at Sky View Observatory is Starbucks (it´s actually everywhere), so while you´re admiring the view, you can enjoy your favorite coffee.
And then, very nice place is Kerry Terrace park. This park is located on the hill behind the downtown and what I recommend is to come to this place either early in the morning to watch the sunrise or later afternoon for the sunset. From this place you will see perfectly on Space Needle, Columbia Center and the whole downtown.
A Place Caked With Chewing Gums – The Gum Wall
Correct, I am talking about the wall that is disgusting because it´s covered by chewing gums. However it is the only of it´s kind in the world. What is even worse, they often fall down on the sidewalk and since the very first moment you come to this aisle, you become surrounded by chewing gums. Well, and guess what I did while I was there? I had bought a pack of chewing gums and stuck one of them to the already existing collection. I know, I am gross. Oink.
City Tours: Bill Speidel´s Underground Tour And Seattle Free Walking Tours
What is a better option how to discover the city than with the local tour guides? For example, you might discover, that back in days there was a lot of floods and this situation was partly solved after The Great Fire when after a small accident whole downtown burnt down. The new downtown was made of bricks (if you are ever in a city with the brick architecture like in Portland, Maine it is because the original city was made of wood and completely burnt down). But because of those floods the new town was built about 30 feet higher than the original one and so now we have two parts of the city – the downtown and that part which is under it – the Underground. And it has been preserved until nowadays.
So, if you want to discover the downtown, I highly recommend Seattle Free Walking Tours. The concept of these tours is the same as Free Walking Tours in Europe – it is all for free and at the end you will decide whether and how much you want to tip your guide. More details about those tours you can find in my other blog.
The only option how to see the “original city” is during The Underground Tour. This tour lasts just a little bit over an hour and you will have a lifelong memory. Not to mention that you´ll find out why there are pink-purple tile contractors all over the downtown…
If you want to meet Bill Gates or Macklemore (who was in 2018 my neighbor), you will get the opportunity here. Did you know that famous music bands as Pearl Jam, Foo Fighters, Alice in Chains, Heart, Nirvana or Jimi Hendrix are from Seattle? And talking about Nirvana – did you know that in Seattle is the house where dead Kurt Cobain had been found? In front of that house is a bench where people come to memorialize his death (April 4th) and birthday (February 20th).
Sport Clubs: Seahawks, Huskies, Mariners And Kraken
What love Americans? Sports of course. However sometimes I´d doubt about active sporting but they love to support football, baseball and hockey teams for sure. And one of the things you have to experience is going to the sport bar (I recommend Earl´s on the Ave https://www.earlsontheave.com/ ) while there´s a game and enjoy the atmosphere. Seahawks play in NFL, Huskies are a college football team, Mariners represent in MLB and Kraken is a newly-created hockey team (2021) that plays in NHL.
So, feel free to visit Seattle. When you decide to come, bring your bathing suit and go swimming in Washington Lake. And what is the most important, don´t forget a waterproof jacket because people don´t use umbrellas here.