June’s vacation was magical. Last year we road-tripped down the California coast. This time we took on the Pacific Northwest. What I loved most about the PNW: Nature is so accessible. Fresh air and beautiful landscapes are only a short drive or bike ride away from downtown. It’s incredible.
Here are some highlights from the trip!
First stop: Vancouver, BC
Saturday we got in town late afternoon. We had time to do a little city exploring, food shopping and went out to get the BEST DINNER EVER. We spoiled ourselves on the first night with amazing Japanese food from Kitanoya Guu Original (Thurlow).
We were staying downtown in a high-rise >> check out this view:
Sunday was rain forest exploration day. We spent the $$$ and went to Capilano Suspension Bridge first thing in the morning. We wanted to beat the crowds… and, man, am I glad we did.
Next stop was Shannon Falls and an attempt to hike up The Chief — or at least to the first checkpoint — but we were low on fuel and didn’t pack enough snacks for that.
Dinner was brown rice paste, veggies and sausage. It’s our go-to meal while traveling. The sausage doubles as breakfast sausage on homemade breakfast sammies for Ryo.
Monday morning was spent in Lynn Valley and then on a Stanley Park bike ride with leftovers for lunch. It was out last night in Vancouver, so we splurged and went to Forage for dinner. So delicious!
Second stop: Seattle, WA
On Tuesday we caught an early train (like, 6:30am early). After a drive down the coast we landed in Seattle. We grabbed our rental car, put on comfy shoes (pic below) and headed right downtown to get lunch. Our first stop was touristy Pike’s Place Market.
I grabbed a coffee, we checked out the “gum wall,” then braved the crowds to find delicious food to eat. The line at Piroshky, Piroshky wasn’t super long… so we hopped in. After more exploring downtown, we checked into our AirBnB and settled in for a quick workout, dinner at home and Game of Thrones.
The next morning (Wednesday), we planned a long hike followed by lunch on the road and dinner with friends. Our first stop was Snoqualmie Falls where we caught a couple rainbows in the morning light.
Our hike was to Snow Lake in North Bend, WA. The hike was about 7 miles total and covered a variety of terrains (grassy mountainside, rocky mountainside, snowy mountainside…). The view at the top was … well… amazing.
Here is some post hike fuel!
Also while in Seattle, I had to check out The Grinning Yogi (Thursday and Friday). The studio was on the same list as EveryBodyFights for top Instagrammable gyms. Crazy me didn’t even take a pic inside for IG. I was too busy riding the bliss train.
— Emily (@EmilyatSHSH) June 24, 2016
The rest of our time in Seattle was spent with friends… drinking good beer, sipping on good coffee, listening to good music and eating good food. We explored as many neighborhoods as we could and — of course — got rained on a lot.
Third stop: Portland, OR
No surprise, Portland was my favorite. It’s small, artsy and clean. There is a huge emphasis on sourcing locally and shopping small. Stores are also filled with handmade, natural treasures… oh, and the food scene is great. When we arrived in Portland from Seattle (Saturday), we headed right out for lunch. I got Wolf & Bear. Ryo got a too-big-for-his-belly katsu-curry meal.
We weren’t in Portland long, so we spent the first day exploring the city and tracking down some friends. The next day (Sunday), we hiked around so waterfalls and stopped at scenic points along the Columbia River Gorge.
Later that night, we met up with friends who were just arriving in Portland ( — they are moving there)! They had just finished their cross-country journey, so we chatted about that and life in Portland.
Our trip was amazing. I didn’t want to leave… but reality called. What I loved most about this trip was time spent outside exploring mountains, rivers, lakes and waterfalls. We also saw a lot of friends who moved out there recently — making it feel like home. Who knows, maybe it will be our home soon… 😉
What summer trips do you have planned?