Friday, June 21, 2013

Seattle/Victoria Trip {Day 6}

Sunday was our last day in Seattle.  We spent the last two nights at the Inn at the Market.  It is a great boutique hotel that is actually located inside Pike Place Market.  We had a nice large room (unfortunately I waited until 1 a.m. to take the photos!), and a great view of the market and the sound (which I didn't take a photo of!).

Why don't all hotels have a hamper for the dirty towels?
Despite wanting to sleep until noon, we got up, got ready, and headed out to see Pike Place Market again.  I still can't get over the flowers and the seafood...
It was a great trip, and I was sad to leave, but I had a pup at home that was ready to see me (& I was ready to see her too!).  Here's a phone pic of Mt. Rainier as we flew over...
Here's the pup with her souvenir from the Seattle Aquarium
Here are some of my thoughts on the hotels, restaurants, what we did right, what we did wrong, what I'd do differently, etc....
The Hotels

Edgewater Hotel:  You can't beat the views at this hotel, BUT if you aren't going to pay for a waterview room, then stay somewhere else and just visit the Six Seven Restaurant for the view.  If you are not in a waterview room, then there is a train which will go by your room.  Even with earplugs, that dang train woke me several times each night.  Also, we did not have a mirror outside of the bathroom, which is really not very handy for two girls trying to get ready.  My final big gripe is that they charged approx $15 for wifi.  Seriously?  Why, when I'm paying what I was paying to stay there, do you want to charge me $15 a day for wifi?  This hotel was a great hotel to stay in when you are catching the early Victoria Clipper ferry as it is just on the next pier.

Inn at the MarketWe really loved this hotel, but hardly got to enjoy it due to our late night arrival on Friday, our Saturday at Olympic Park, and Sunday morning checkout.  This is an awesome location.  I would stay here again in a heartbeat.  I think it's an even better location than many of the other Downtown Seattle hotels.  I can see why it is on Conde Nast's Gold List!  (and free wifi!)
The Fairmont EmpressTo be honest, our room was more run-down than I would expect for a Fairmont Hotel.  The rooms could use some serious updating and it didn't have A/C, which wasn't a big deal at night, but did get warm during the day.  Thankfully, it had a ceiling fan.  They too charge for wifi, again approx $15 for 24 hours of service.  Since we were in Canada and weren't using our phones without wifi, we paid for it here so we could use our phones and ipad.  But all that being said, I cannot imagine staying anywhere else in Victoria.  Not only because of the beauty and the history, but location, location, location!  


La Panier:  A great french bakery.  Got a sandwich to eat on the road on Saturday and it was wonderful.  All the pastries were to die for.
Dahlia Lounge: This was probably my favorite Seattle restaurant.  If you couldn't eat there, you should at least stop by the Dahlia Bakery next door for some goodies.
Red Fish Blue Fish:  In Victoria, this was my favorite.  If I'd have been able to, I would have eaten here more than once.  There were about 3 things I was just itching to try.
Seattle Don't Miss Sights
Pike Place Market
Kerry Park--that's a post card view you need to see!
Chihuly Garden & Space Needle
Victoria Don't Miss Sights
Inner Harbour area
Whale Watch
Butchart Gardens
What I'd Do Differently
(1) I'd definitely want to devote more time to Olympic National Park.  You could easily do 2 full days here.  That being said, I wouldn't take for my day there.  So if you could only do one day there, I'd still say go for it.  Maybe just do Hurricane Ridge, Marymere Falls (or the falls at Sol Duc), and then see some of the beaches.  I just don't think there is enough time to add in Hoh Rainforest since it's such a huge time suck. 
If I was going to do two days in the park, I'd probably detour before I got to the park.  See Port Townsend, WA and also Sequim, WA.  Go to Hurricane Ridge, Marymere & Sol Duc.  Spend the night in that Crescent Lake area.  Then on day two hit up the rainforest and the beaches.
(2) Go a few weeks later in the summer.  We went from June 4-9, which was a little too early apparently.  In Sequim, WA, the lavender was about a week out from blooming.  In Victoria, the city had not put out all the hanging baskets and flowers they usually have everywhere.  (Apparently they were suppose to have gone in the week before we arrived, but for some reason they didn't).  Also, I think we were kind of between seasons at Butchart Gardens.  It was still beautiful, but the spring flowers were done, and the summer flowers weren't in their splendor yet.  Again, you could tell that the roses were about a week away from being beautiful. 
Overall Opinion
If you haven't been to Seattle, I'd say go as soon as you can.  It's so beautiful.  I mean, really beautiful.  I was comparing sights on the peninsula to Snowdonia National Park in Wales.  Suzanna was comparing it to her summer in Austria.  But it's so much closer to home!  In fact, as we drove, we both agreed that our national anthem should be "America, the Beautiful".
I think Seattle is easily seen in 2 days.  Then you could devote any additional time you might have to an excursion or two like Victoria, Vancouver, Mount Rainier, or Olympic National Park. 
I've been on a real kick over the past few years to see this country.  I have been to the Northeast, Southeast, the South, Arizona, California, but I was really missing out on not having seen the great Pacific Northwest.  I'm very happy with my 2013 vacation selection!


Rebeka said...

If you ever come to Seattle again, come in August-September, those are our best months :)

And I couldn't agree more with the Dahlia Lounge recommendation. I really enjoy all of Tom Douglas's restaurants, you'll have to try some of the others next time.

I'm so glad you enjoyed your time here :)

Emily said...

Love all your pics...I so want to go there now!

The Cooper Family said...

It was so much fun! Where is next on the agenda?!?


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