5 day Seattle travel plan

Surrounded by water and evergreen forests, with snow-topped mountains in the background, the Emerald City may not be as visited as some destinations on the West Coast, but if you want a balance between city and scenery, buzzing and relaxed, Seattle is a great place to start. The birthplace of Starbucks, you can expect great coffee on every corner, delicious fresh seafood, a lively music scene and laid back kayaking or hiking to get away from it all.

Day 1: Awarded the best walking and cycling city in the United States by the Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center (PBIC), Seattle is a great city to go out and explore on foot. Start at Pike Place Market, one of Seattle’s most iconic sites. If you go early, you’ll avoid the crowds and marvel as the many flower sellers and fishmongers set up their stalls.

Try the Athenian Inn or popular Lowell’s to get a tasty breakfast before you continue to explore, and then head down First Avenue towards Pioneer Square to take in Seattle’s famous historic architecture, awesome shops and a ton of high quality Native Indian art galleries. Check out Uwajimaya, 600 Fifth Ave. S., Seattle’s premier supermarket for a taste of Asian fusion.

Day 2: If all that walking’s given you sore feet, then be sure to slip a pair of insoles into your walking shoes and get ready to explore Seattle’s skyline. Prepare to be blown away as you’re whisked up 520 feet to the observation deck of the famous Space Needle. Take your time on top of the world and maybe even dine in SkyCity’s luxurious restaurant.

Make sure to check out the top rated Chihuly Garden and Glass, created by Northwest artist, Dale Chihuly to complete your mindblowing day. Depending on the time of year and the schedule, check out a Seattle Seahawks game if they’re playing at home in the evening.

Day 3: Now that you’ve had a pretty good feel for the city, it’s time to check out Mt. Rainier, often referred to as Washington’s crown jewel. This still active volcano is teeming with wildlife, waterfalls, glaciers and forests, and is truly an unforgettable experience, as you can spot wild deer, bear and even elks.

Great hiking abounds around Mt. Rainer and you can start with a short trail loop, like the Nisqually Vista Trail. Be sure to pack extra rain gear, as this city is famous for its constant drizzle, and if you need to get more insoles for your hardworking feet, try out the Pedag brand for ultimate comfort. If you’ve got any energy left, check out one of Seattle’s world famous live music venues, such as Café Racer, or Columbia City Theater.

Day 4: If you’re a fan of kayaking, then the San Juan Islands offer a beautiful backdrop to spend a day spotting for orcas and enjoying the Puget Sound’s breathtaking scenery. If you prefer to explore the islands on foot, or maybe even spend a night there, check out the times of the Washington State Ferries and leave the city far behind as you enjoy the best that nature has to offer.

Day 5: The chances are that on your last day, you’ll be feeling more like doing some quieter activities than more hiking or exercising, so take in the famous Museum of Flight, 9404 E. Marginal Way S. Even if you’re not interested in flying, this fascinating six-story-tall gallery is sure to capture your attention. If you’re not a museum person, you could take a taxi or drive to Columbia City, a quirky, historical neighborhood, off the tourist trail. Grab a beer, get a coffee and just enjoy a chilled afternoon of relaxing and tasting delicious foods.

Seattle has something for everybody, from nature lovers to historians and art, culture, music and seafood fans. Five days in the Pacific Northwest will leave you with a taste for more.

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