Saturday, September 1, 2012

Jennifer's West Coast Trip: Seattle, Part 1

I got back from a trip with Alexis last month. We crammed a lot of stuff into about a week, so I thought I'd break it up into several posts like I did for last year's California trip. We spent a few days in Seattle, Washington; took a day trip to Vancouver, British Columbia; and then spent a couple of days in San Francisco, California.

But first: Seattle, Washington. I flew into Seattle direct from Chicago on a Saturday. The weather was great!

We each got a CityPass, since we wanted to see the main attractions. We started at Seattle Center. We saw the International Fountain, which is 10 feet tall by 27 feet wide and shoots water up to 120 feet high.

International Fountain in Seattle WA
International Fountain
There were some lovely flower beds in the park as well.

International Fountain gardens in Seattle WA

International Fountain gardens in Seattle WA

We walked by Chihuly Garden and Glass, which looked interesting, but we didn't actually go in (tickets weren't part of the CityPass). Maybe next time. We thought the huge outdoor glass sculptures were pretty neat.
Chihuly Garden and Glass in Seattle WA
Outdoor glass sculpture at Chihuly Garden and Glass
Of course, we could see the Space Needle from the park.

Seattle Space Needle
Space Needle from below
The first attraction we visited was the Experience Music Project Museum. Some highlights included a guitar gallery, the world's largest indoor video screen, a sculpture made of more than 700 instruments, and a sound lab, where you can play different instruments and sing. We were surprised to find a bunch of horror and sci-fi movie/show artifacts on display as well.

"IF VI WAS IX: Roots and Branches" instrument sculpture

Star Trek's Captain Kirk's chair surrounded by tribbles!
Next, we went on a one-hour Argosy cruise of Seattle Harbor. Our tour guide told us some interesting historical tidbits and had a good sense of humor. Some of the highlights included views of the waterfront, city skyline, and Olympic and Cascade mountains.

Seattle waterfront
Seattle waterfront

Seattle skyline
Seattle city skyline with Cascade Mountains in the background

View of Olympic mountain range
After the cruise, we went on the Seattle Great Wheel, the ferris wheel shown in the waterfront photo above, which was a pretty new attraction. It wasn't part of the CityPass, but we thought it would be fun. There were some nice views from the wheel. We could even see Mt. Rainier!

Jennifer and Alexis on the Seattle Great Wheel ferris wheel

See Mt. Rainier peeking out from the clouds?
View facing west from the ferris wheel
We ended the day by going up to the 360-degree observation deck of the 605-foot tall Space Needle as the sun was setting. This year is the Space Needle's 50th anniversary!

More from Seattle in the next post!

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