After a long, dark bus ride involving a super fun stop off at the US border (my fourth of this trip), we made it to Seattle safe and sound where we jumped in a cab for the short journey to our hotel. We stayed at the Motif Seattle, which now has to be one of my favourite hotels since our room was gracefully upgraded from an average double room, to a whole freaking SUITE upon arrival.
Getting there late at night meant that we didn’t get to make as much of it as we could of, but it didn’t stop our excitement as we opened the door to the room and saw just how much space we had. A living room on one end, two huge double beds in the other end, a million TV’s… Plus, the general niceties you get with a good room – tea/coffee machine, dressing gowns (which were put on as soon as we entered the room) etc.
Don’t get me wrong, we hadn’t stayed in terrible hotels thus far, but it was nice to have some luxury when it wasn’t necessarily expected. When looking for hotels in Seattle we realised very quickly how expensive they are, and in all honesty went with one that had a good deal. Well, an extraordinary deal, as it turns out.
Amazingly, this wasn’t even the highlight of our trip to Seattle, because well, we hadn’t even seen any of Seattle yet.
THE SPACE NEEDLE
For once we made it up bright and early, knowing that we only had one day there and really had to make the most of it. We got breakfast in the hotel (also fancy as hell), and then headed out.
Our hotel was located less than a five minute walk from the monorail, which I was pretty excited about, so we jumped on that down to the center station where the space needle is – it only takes about 10 minutes, and costs next to nothing, so definitely worth a trip.
We arrived so early that the needle wasn’t even open yet, and we had to wait in line. I swear there was also someone in that queue that was heading up before going to work, which I enjoyed the idea of. It’s easy to forget things in your own city when you’re busying yourself with day to day things. I’m sure there are a million things I haven’t done in London yet!
Once in the needle, you’re provided with information (in a fun way) about how the needle was built, and how progressive it was for it’s time when built in 1962 for the world fair. Then, inevitably, the time comes to get in the lift and go to the top of the needle. If you’re afraid of heights, this may not be the best thing for you. If not, you’ll have a blast.
At the top, you can see videos of the view from the space needle from every day of the year, a map of where all the visitors have come from, get food at the revolving restaurant, get coffee from Starbucks and of course, walk around the observation deck outside. We didn’t stay up there too long, because as I mentioned, it isn’t the best place to be if you’re not good with heights. Plus, it was a pretty grey day which meant the views weren’t as nice as they could be – still worth the trip nonetheless though!
If you have time, there are lots of things to do around this area, but sadly we didn’t so we continued on through Seattle in order to hit up all the things on our mini Seattle bucket list. It wasn’t that warm a day, and neither of us had brought jackets because it was so warm in Vancouver, so in all honesty our first port of call was the shops!
We hadn’t really been shopping in our time here, and I had some US dollars burning a hole in my pocket, so we wandered around the American favourites and slightly dangerously ended up in Sephora, which well and truly rinsed my pocket of dollars for me.
PIKE PLACE MARKET
After this, we walked down to Pike Place Market, via the docks and had a wander around some antique shops and I even stumbled across one of my favourite places – a print shop, where I managed to get some gorgeous postcards. I would have got a lot more if my backpack could have handled it.
I love a good market and was absolutely in my element with all the weird and wonderful things on offer. Somehow though, I managed to not buy anything, which I am still strangely proud of.
Seattle is the birthplace of Starbucks Coffee, so we did of course also stop en route and get our hands on some (well, tea for me). Plus, we walked past (but didn’t brave the queues of) the original Starbucks, aka Pike Place (you may notice some Starbucks even sell a Pike Place roast in honour of this).
After this, we continued wandering, noticing how cool Seattle is. Its pretty damn hipster, but that’s probably why I liked it so much. Its just one of those places that feels like home as soon as you step foot in it and you’re not quite sure why.
It was getting on by this point and we had a bus to catch, so we made sure our wandering put us in the right direction and headed to the station to start our journey back to Vancouver, already excited about the plans we had waiting for us there.
And that was it for our time in Seattle. I stand by my original words – Seattle, you are nice and I like you very much.
I will be back. Hopefully soon.