Seattle and Washington state media update
Posted February 21st 2018 in Latest News, News and Updates,
Seattle sizzles with a hip vibe and laidback sophistication. Veins bursting with business acumen and entrepreneurship are creating a city so alive it will sear your senses.
The city which swept coffee into the 21st century is an addiction like no other. From the iconic Space Needle to the glittering angles of the new Mark Tower, Seattle’s skyline is encircled by snow-capped volcanoes, verdant forests, lakes and sensational seascapes. World renowned for Hendrix, then grunge 30 years ago, Seattle remains cutting-edge with riveting scenes of Americana, indie rock, hip hop and electronic music today.
Premium wines born from Washington State’s 900 vineyards, complement the exceptional dining experiences serving up lashings of the freshest seafood from its Pacific waters and local farm to fork treats, in its restaurants and hotels.
Above all, it’s Seattleites and their neighbourhoods you come to experience. HIP! – the word was made for us.
The adventure begins in Seattle. It’s a walkable city. Discover the Seattle Aquarium and the Great Wheel on Elliot Bay waterfront.
Take the Monorail from Westlake Center in the heart of the city to the Seattle Center, to see the Space Needle, MoPop (a pop culture wonderland) and the beautiful Chihuly Garden and Glass which showcases the glass blowing skills of artist Dale Chihuly.
Head over to watch the flying fish at the famous Pike Place Market or stop at Starbucks’ Reserve Roastery and Tasting Room.
Up for a bigger adventure? Take a day trip and tour the Boeing airplane factory, hop a seaplane to the San Juan Islands or enjoy one of Washington State’s great national parks.
There are three National parks near Seattle – The Olympic National Park, Mt Rainier National Park and the North Cascades National Park.
The Olympic National Park is home to high mountains, to long beaches, Pacific surf, whales and the only temperate rainforests in US, with their spectacular massive bearded mossy spruces just like those in Lord of the Rings.
At almost one million acres including 73 miles of Pacific coastline, the Olympic National Park is the epicenter of the Olympic Peninsula. Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site and International Biosphere Reserve, almost 95% of the park is designated wilderness. The Park is also home to 26 endemic species and visited by over two million people a year, placing it among the top 10 most visited national parks in the USA.
The Olympic Peninsula also has one of only three Victorian coastal towns in US, Port Townsend, with lovely character lodges, and B&Bs to stay in.
Mount Rainier National Park is one of the highest mountains in the USA and features amazing hiking trails and wildlife. It has over 120 glaciers and views across the live volcano Mount St Helens, one of the most active volcanoes in the Cascades.
The North Cascades National Park east of Seattle is the wilderness adventure capital of Washington State. It offers a range of mountains, lakes and forests, and is a great area for outdoor adventurers with horse riding, kayaking, white water rafting and even rock climbing.
A 400 mile drive called the North Cascade Loop gives visitors access to many of its highlights and towns and villages. The drive starts in Seattle and could take just two to three days to complete, but visitors may like to stay longer to enjoy more adventures in the region.
Top sights to see in Seattle
- The Space Needle built in 1962 with revolving restaurant. There’s a $100m renovation programme underway to modernize and reinvent the Observation Deck and the restaurant – keep an eye on developments at https://www.spaceneedle.com/centuryproject-release/
- Chihuly Glass – amazing almost like a small Kew Gardens of glass flowers in a large conservatory, in their gardens, and many other amazing glass exhibits.
- The MoPOP – a pop culture exhibit in a building the shape of a smashed Hendrix guitar!
- Over 100 wine tasting/wine bars owned by vineyards can be found in Woodinville located 30 miles from downtown Seattle.
- Whale watching in the Puget Sound – available all year round! There are 3 resident orca pods plus many other migratory whales, sea otters and more to enjoy.
- For over 100 years — Boeing aircraft manufactured in Seattle, including the Dreamliner.
- In the heart of the city, Pike Place Market has the oldest Starbucks in Seattle- and it’s the only one in the world where you can buy a mug with the original bare topped mermaid logo!
- Pike Place Market – has expanded and has great food and cooking experiences and tours with chefs.
- Home to Amazon, Facebook, Boeing, Hewlett Packard and more – Jeremy Clarkson and team are spending time in Seattle creating their new ‘Amazon TV car show’.
- It’s been 26 years this year since Nirvana brought grunge to music scene – Kurt Cobain was born near Seattle and lived and died in the city. In 1991 he brought Grunge Music to international fame with the launch of the album Nevermind.
- Chocolate – salted caramels are a speciality of Washington state and in Seattle Fran’s is a famous chocolatier whose salted caramels were chosen by the Obamas as the official chocolates of the White House. Also tour Theo’s chocolate factory in town!
- 218 Alaska cruises depart from Seattle this year taking just over 1 million people on an adventure of a lifetime.
- UnCruise Adventures and American Cruise Lines offer small ship sailings, where travellers visit inlets, channels and smaller ports, and see Puget Sound’s marine wildlife up close.
Top Festivals/events 2018
Bumbershoot 31 August – 2 September 2018 www.bumbershoot.com
Taste of Washington 22-25 March 2018 http://tastewashington.org/
Seattle Film Festival 17 May – 10 June 2018 https://www.siff.net/festival
Upstream Festival 1-3 June 2018 https://upstreammusicfest.com/
Pearl Jam plays Seattle for charity: Don’t miss Pearl Jam playing in their home city! They will play two ‘Home Shows’ at Safeco in August, pledging $1 million to Seattle-area homeless initiatives, Wednesday, August 8, and Friday, August 10, and mark the first time in five years that Pearl Jam — inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame last April — has played its hometown.
Washington state is second only to California for wine production, with nearly 900 wineries around the state. There are some amazing places to stay to enhance the experience plus touring options from horse riding to cycling to walking and driving between them!
There are 25 Scenic Byways in the state of Washington – lots of great drives!
There is lots of bird and wildlife watching all over the state e.g. don’t miss whale watching in the Puget Sound. Travel from Seattle and see native Orca pods all year round, plus many and varied visiting whales including Humpback, Grey, Minke and of course, seals and dolphins! Go Squid catching, see Salmon Ladders where the fish swim and leap, bald eagles and bears.
There are river cruises on the Columbia River and Snake River along the state line between Washington and Oregon.
Go to Canada!
Take a Clipper boat to Victoria, Vancouver Island off the coast of Canada. Vancouver is a 3 hour drive from Seattle so enjoy combining the USA and Canada to make a Two Nation Vacation.
Travel between Vancouver and Seattle along some of the most beautiful coastline in the US on the Coastal Passage train for a luxurious and relaxing experience.
Oregon and California
Lots of visitors like to pair Portland in Oregon with Seattle, and some even drive from San Francisco up to Seattle.
Films and TV
Many films and TV shows have been set in Seattle and Washington State – Sleepless in Seattle, Grey’s Anatomy, Frasier – even a building that featured in 50 Shades of Grey are amongst them and the latest series of Twin Peaks was filmed in Washington state. The Twilight books were set in Forks on the Olympic Peninsula where visitation to the national park as a result has increased enormously.
Washington is a state of spectacular contrasts and great fly-drive holidays with a choice of direct non-stop daily flights into Seattle’s SeaTac International Airport with Virgin Atlantic, British Airways, Norwegian and from May 2018 to October 2018 there will be flights with Thomas Cook Airlines between Manchester and Seattle and Dublin-Seattle with Aer Lingus.
More information and holiday itineraries are available at WWW.Seattle-WashingtonState.co.uk