By Way of Water
One thing everyone in Seattle has in common is we love water.
You kind of have to if you’re from here, but many of us transplants were drawn here by water, from the fresh water lakes and rivers, to the bays of the Puget Sound, that salty seductress whose fingers shape our western edge and envelope our island archipelagos. There are so many ways to taste the salty side of Seattle whether you’re a local, a guest, budget conscious, eco-concious or traveling with family.
Here is one of my favorite do-it-yourself itineraries for water lovers starting in downtown Seattle:
- First, ride the King County Water Taxi from the downtown waterfront terminal at Pier 50. Cost is $4 each way if you’re 6 – 65 years old. Kids under 5 are FREE. You get an AMAZING view of the city and about a 15 minute ride across Elliott Bay. PLUS, they drop you off on Seacrest Dock in West Seattle, an incredible neighborhood. (TIP: Avoid riding during rush hour when many locals use this for commuting to and from work. How cool is that?!)
- From Seacrest Dock there are options for every traveler:
- The Land Loving Explorer: Hop on the FREE shuttle that comes right to the dock, and take a cruise through this family friendly neighborhood. There are always lots of events and festivals in West Seattle, including a weekly farmer’s market. Find real time events on the award winning local news source, the West Seattle Blog. Or just hop off at the Alaska Junction to explore the many shops and restaurants including this editor’s fave, the family friendly, eco-conscious, pillar of the community, who make holy good beer and far from average pub food Elliott Bay Brewery. (Look at their freakin’ special right now! SEARED CORVINA $14.95 6 oz. of wild Ecuadorian Corvina sea bass flash seared and finished with a toasted almond butter pan sauce. Served with roasted red potatoes and a small salad of arugula, red onions and grape tomatoes. Pairs nicely with our Organic Alembic Pale Ale. See what I’m saying?)
- The Professional Relaxer: Walk 20 feet from the dock to the Alki Crab and Fish Restaurant for some fried halibut and chips (fried is the theme here) and frosty beverages, while you sit on the patio with a panoramic view of the Seattle skyline. They provide heat lamps and blankets on cold days, a very nice touch! Don’t forget your camera! Phones don’t quite do it justice.
- The Eco-Concious Adventurer: Walk 20 more feet to Alki Kayak Tours for a plethora of human-powered rental options in addition to kayaks, like bicycles, skateboards, fishing boats, and inline skates! Take your pick, then paddle, peddle or skate your way around Alki Point to the only sandy beach community in Seattle, Alki Beach. [Alk-eye] say it right. See Seattelites brave the sun in shorts and sandals on this sandy strip complete with beach bums, surf shops, ice cream parlors, pizza joints and cruising convertibles. It even has it’s own statue of liberty where the Denny Party first landed. Hands down one of the best spots for watching people, birds, whales, seals and the sun setting behind the Olympic Mountains.
- The Water-Lusters: If you’re like me and you want to be as close to water as possible, especially on brilliant Seattle summer days, then join Alki Kayak Tours for the Elliott Bay Tour from 2:30-4:30 for a paddle exploring Historic Elliott Bay with outstanding views of the Seattle Skyline & Olympic Mountains. Or opt for the Sunset Tour two hours before sunset. Watch the sun melt into the Olympic Mountains as it creates a light show off the Seattle skyline. No previous experience is needed because their super pro guides will outfit you and fully instruct you on paddling technique and safety before leaving the beach. Get 2-for-1 deals on both of these Alki Kayak Tours in Seattle TourSaver!!
Don’t forget to keep $4 in your pocket, so after you have had your fill of sites, sounds, flavors, activities and hopefully sunshine, you can hop right back on the Water Taxi and get delivered to the downtown waterfront, a satisfied sauntering distance from most city hotels.