As I was burning out from my job, I decided to use some of my vacation days to take a rejuvenating trip. I decided to pick Seattle, Washington for my first trip as a solo traveler! *cue the excitement*
I had been wanting to go to Seattle for a while since I had heard rave reviews about the city. So, I figured that this was my perfect chance to get out west for a long weekend.
These 15 things are the perfect recipe for an incredible trip in Seattle whether you’re traveling solo or with a crew.
When I landed, I took the Link Light Rail from the Airport into the city. It was easy to find with all of the airport arrows and signs.
The best part was that it only cost $3 for a one-way ticket. An incredible way to save money on transportation instead of paying for a $30-50 uber. It took about 45 minutes to get into the city, but I didn’t mind because the views are lovely if you look out of the window.
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I got off the shuttle in the heart of the city and strode to Pike Place Market, which was not too far away.
There I was fluttering around Pike Place Market giddily taking photos of the elegant flower bouquets, inhaling the smells of the fresh fish, and gawking at the abundance of fruit and vegetables.
I found a seat at Market Grill –a must try– and indulged in their freshly caught grilled salmon and a cup of clam chowder.
Now, it is called New England Clam Chowder for a reason, but Seattle gave New England a run for their money here.
This cup of chowder was one of the best I had during my time in Washington. It was so good I scarfed it down before I could even take a picture!
Hats off to Market Grill. I left very satiated and satisfied.
I highly recommend carving out a good chunk of time to stroll through the market. There is so much to look at and buy!
After checking out Pike Place Market, I sauntered over to check out all of the restaurants on the other side of the street.
The original Starbucks had a line out the door, so if you want to check it out, make sure you’re ready to wait.
Piroshky Piroshky is a super small Russian bakery that has savory and sweet treats.
I am salivating just thinking about being there again!
I wanted the whole menu.
Their seasonal pumpkin almond braid was screaming my name.
I ate the whole thing looking over the water, and let me tell you, that is what I call pure contentment.
This bakery was so good, I had to go twice.
I made a point to go back right before my flight back to Chicago.
The second time, I got the bacon, hash browns, egg and cheese piroshky.
Yep, exactly how it sounds: incredible.
After eating my weight in deliciously gooey goodness, I meandered on over to the infamous gum wall.
At first, it was hard to find.
Apparently, they had just “cleaned” the wall. (Whoever’s job that was, I’m sorry.)
After walking around like a complete tourist with Google Maps out at the ready, I strolled down a street next to the market and found the little wall.
It’s fun to see; however, I did hear a few surprised remarks from other tourists saying “wait, that’s it?”
They were unamused, but I was in cheery bliss to be roaming around by myself.
To me, a gum wall is a gum wall. I didn’t expect a Van Gogh-inspired painting on the wall, but if you go and see The Starry Night in gum, you 100% have to send me a picture.
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Even though some may consider this park “just a red sculpture,” this may have been the most underrated part of my trip.
I am in love with this park. To me, this park represents serenity, connectedness and peace.
With an afternoon check-in, I was able to drop my suitcase off at my AirBnB (finally!), which was a 5-minute walk to this park.
Now, imagine this: it’s October. There’s a light breeze in the air. The sun is slowly setting leaving a calming haze over the city.
People are walking their dog, holding hands, and laughing quietly.
I was in a trance when I went to this park simply because I was astounded to glimpse a beautiful sculpture overlooking the water while the sun was setting.
With my journal in tow, I sat on a bench, meditated, and wrote about how grateful I was to be in Seattle on my first solo trip.
This is a memory I fondly think back on often.
I went back the next day just to revel in the atmosphere again.
My recommendation is to take a nice peaceful walk around the park and continue down the path by the water.
Whether you’re going north or south, it’s definitely an experience to take in.
You can also indulge in doing some yoga at this park.
Bring your travel mat, and enjoy the beautiful scenery.
After my walk, I didn’t want my night to end.
I was still full from my huge late lunch of Market Grill and Piroshky Piroshky, so I wasn’t necessarily looking for the whole dinner experience.
Instead, I walked around and winded up at Uptown Hophouse–a nice looking sports bar to end the night.
To be honest, I never really considered going to a bar alone a single female solo traveler.
Yet, there were some great people in the bar that I got to mingle with, and the bartenders were super chatty and friendly.
Also, I was raving over the full-range of beer and cider options.
There are many cute spots around Seattle to cozy up and grab a cocktail.
I have definitely changed my mind about going to bars alone.
I think it's a cool way to experience the vibe of the city.
This was an ideal way to end my solo travel day.
Washington is a breeding ground of stunning nature.
I feel most at peace amongst trees, bodies of water and mountains.
So, I knew getting out of Seattle and experiencing Washington’s nature up close was an absolute must.
Evergreen Escapes Tours popped up multiple times online, and from my first inquiry with them, I knew I needed to do a day trip with them.
I was torn between the Mount Rainier trip and the Olympic National Park trip since both seemed phenomenal.
I ended up going with Olympic National Park knowing full well that I would definitely make another trip back for Mount Rainier.
I was hesitant to spend over $200 on a day trip because I knew that if I did it on my own it would probably be cheaper.
However, after speaking to the insightful Evergreen Escapes tour guide on the phone, I realized I would happily pay the price for a full day of having everything taken care of for me.
Plus, then I wouldn’t have to be lost in the woods by myself–I could actually spend the day in the company of other nature lovers!
We drove to the ferry, and I was feeling like Derek Shepherd from Grey’s Anatomy on his commute to work every day in Seattle.
After the ferry, we drove two hours through the beautiful Bainbridge to the national park.
With it being early autumn, the trees boasted glamorous, rustic red and orange leaves.
We drove up to Hurricane Ridge.
Here, you are supposed to see a beautiful landscape of the mountain range, but since it was snowy and cloudy, we just saw a gray fog.
I was only a little disappointed because we still got to hike around in the snow, stopping to learn more about the trees and animals.
The disappointment didn’t last long because on the drive back down, the fog started to clear up, and I got to see the picturesque scenery.
This was only the first stop!
We rode back down to eat lunch near a waterfall and computer-background-worthy views.
Evergreen Escapes had already prepared lunch and snacks for us that we stowed in the van.
It wasn’t just a packed sandwich, but a whole chicken, salad and vegetables table spread!
If you thought I was blissed out before, I was euphoric then.
Later, we went to Lake Crescent, which was absolutely breathtaking.
Since it was early October, there were very few tourists here, so we got to take in all of its tranquility on our own.
The lake with the mountains in the background was surely a memorable sight to see.
Attached to Lake Crescent was the greenest and wildest forest I’ve ever been in.
It was reminiscent of Dr. Seuss’ Truffula Tree Forest in The Lorax. I was bewildered. Add it to the list of most wonderful spots to meditate.
Finally, we ended the trip at the tide pools, which housed several species of marine organisms that we got to see up close and personal. It was the perfect end to a wonderful day.
This day trip had a little bit of everything: mountains, lakes, forests, waterfalls, and pools.
I was entranced by how beautiful this world is!
It was so worth it to have Evergreen Escapes plan the whole day trip for me.
Pay the money to be with professionals who know the ropes, so you can just sit back and enjoy.
You can do this trip solo or even as a couple.
There were plenty of different people who did the tour. It was a wonderful way to meet people on my Seattle solo adventure.
You can do one day trip with Evergreen Escapes, or even fill your schedule with two!
It’s your trip. Go crazy.
When we got back to Seattle, a few of the trip members and I wanted to try the famous Pike Place Chowder.
There are two locations.
Since we got back late, we had to go to the location inside the mall. Definitely a different vibe than the stand-alone restaurant.
I had a po-boy shrimp sandwich and clam chowder.
It was quite satisfying and added another check mark to my bucket list!
You can try a sampler of all of their chowders. Ah, a foodie’s dream!
I was recommended to go to Biscuit Bitch for breakfast by a friend, and boy, was I happy I went.
After strolling up at 8:30am and realizing it opened at 9am, I rolled into the back of the line.
Yes, there was already a line 30 minutes before it opened!
With patience and excitement, I waited to get my biscuit.
Patience is indeed a virtue because when I finally got my breakfast sandwich, I think I cried happy tears as I savored every bite.
I am in love with biscuits and gravy. So, this was such a treat for me.
Also, this is the kind of restaurant where they are mean to you on purpose.
When you go up to the counter, they say “what do you want, bitch?”
The vibe is fun and playful in there, which makes it an entertaining place to go.
Thanks, Biscuit Bitch, for the happy food tears!
I knew that I wanted to do the Space Needle and Chihuly Glass & Garden; however, I had spare time in the morning and wasn’t sure how I was going to fill it.
Luckily, I met some locals at Uptown Hophouse who gave me recommendations and told me I should check out one of the neighborhoods in Seattle.
They suggested Fremont, Ballard or Capitol Hill. Since Capitol Hill was the closest to the Space Needle, I figured that was probably my best bet.
Capitol Hill is a hip and retro neighborhood that has some super cool vibes.
If you walk down Broadway, you can window shop and explore the coffee shops and cafes.
So, after my breakfast at Biscuit Bitch, I felt energized and walked all the way to this neighborhood. From Belltown, this took about an hour.
Now, walking is one of my favorite activities.
I prefer to walk over any other transportation hands down.
Since I was on my Seattle Solo Trip Adventure, I had no one to complain about this long walk, which was fabulous.
Google Maps became my best friend in how to actually maneuver the streets.
If you aren’t a walker, or if you are short on time, an uber or lyft would be about 10 minutes.
I’m so happy I got to explore this neighborhood!