During my West Coast adventures, I spent a few days in Seattle. It wasn’t a part of my original travel agenda but on a suggestion from a friend, I decided to go. I was surprised; though the city seemed very white and the weather was kind of meh, I liked it.
Where I Stayed:
I stayed in the Hotel Hotel hostel in the Fremont neighborhood. The neighborhood is promoted as artsy but I didn’t get that vibe (boutiques selling overpriced goods isn’t very artsy to me). Even so, the hostel was great! They offered the standard free breakfast in the AM and free tea all day. The staff was cool. The other boarders (mostly from Europe and U.S. America) were friendly. The building was nicely decorated: bedrooms and shared spaces had walls painted black while bathrooms followed a white/silver pattern. The hostel was all good except for one major drawback: it is on the 2nd level of a building and on the first level there is a bar that hosts very loud karaoke nights.
Beyond the hostel, there was a lot to give a thumbs-up to:
I’m a huge fan of public libraries. I don’t see any reason to buy books before I read them. But in Seattle I found myself pulled in by all of the used bookstores. I ended up spending about 10$ on 5 books! There is a used bookstore across the street from Hotel Hotel but in my walking adventures, I came across many more. I only purchased books in two stores — one, a cafe-bookstore combination, that was planning to close for good the next day and the other is called Twice Sold Tales and located in the Capitol Hill Neighborhood.
Another destination of my walking adventures. GasWorks Park is located not too far from Hotel Hotel. Everyone seemed to recommend it as a great place to get a full view of the city and I would agree. When I visited, it seemed like they were preparing for July 4th celebrations (the park is a popular spot for watching fireworks).
I usually don’t pay for museums but I’m glad I checked my spendthrift ways for the EMP Museum. I spent about 17$ and several hours learning about influential musicians from the Pacific Northwest and having fun with the interactive music, sci-fi and horror exhibits. Mostly the museum changed my perception of West Coast music scenes. I never realized that the Pacific Northwest produced Jimi Hendrix and Nirvana. Nor did I realize how revolutionary the DIY nature of the Punk rock scene was.
I don’t think I would seriously consider moving to Seattle but it’s definitely a city I would like to explore further the next time I find myself on the West Coast.