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Seattle to Lynden in 4 days

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Los Angeles
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Seattle to Lynden in 4 days

We will be visiting family in Lynden at the end of April, and decided to make a long weekend of it. We thought it would be a nice opportunity to see a bit of Seattle and have a nice drive through Washington (almost) up to the border. Now I'm looking for recommendations, particularly once we leave Seattle and head north.

We're flying into Sea-Tac late on Tuesday night, and sleeping at an airport hotel. We'll go into Seattle in the morning and spend Wednesday and the first part of Thursday in the city, before we hit the road.

Lynden seems like a pretty straightshot up I-5, but being familiar with I-5 in California, it probably doesn't have much to do along the way, so we'd like to find a route that is scenic, and has maybe a nice town to spend Thursday night, and Friday. We'd like to get outdoors on Friday (maybe a not-too-strenuous hike), before making our way up to our ultimate destination by sometime midday Saturday. We'll have to take the direct route back on Saturday night, where we'll sleep at the same airport hotel as when we arrived, and fly back home on Sunday morning.

So I think we're in good shape on how to divide up our time, but I'd like recommendations on the best places for these things:

- lodging in Seattle (moderately priced, but a good location is more important),

- overall route from Seattle to Lynden,

- a place to stay on that route, and

- a good place along it to hike and see some of Washington's famous natural beauty.

I appreciate any and all input. I'm looking forward to our little "Washington state sampler".

Thanks, and safe travels!

seattle
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1. Re: Seattle to Lynden in 4 days

I can help with part of your inquiry. Two ways to <lynden. One go right to Bellis Fair <mall in Bellingham and go up guide meridian or my preferred route is to take the Mt. Baker, Sunset hwy exit. Go about two blocks and you will see a left turn lane. That is call Hannegan Road. It goes thru some nice farm areas and is nicer than going up the guide. You could go to <mt. Baker for a drive and snowhoeing depending when. You could also take the Burlington exit and go up hwy 9. Its slower but scenic, depending on what you have in mind.

Seattle, Washington
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2. Re: Seattle to Lynden in 4 days

I would probably do the following:

From Seattle, drive to Mukilteo and take a ferry to Whidbey Island. Drive up the island stopping at the Ebey and Casey state parks, and some of the small towns. At the northern end of the island, spend a bit longer at the Deception Pass state park (or come back to this park the next day, if it is late and/or rainy). You'll get lots of excellent advice on this board about what to see and do on Whidbey island.

Spend one or two days in a cheap-ish motel or hotel in Burlington or Mount Vernon area (plenty of choice around the I-5 exits).

Next day, go to Deception Pass if not visited, La Conner (nice quiet small town) and Anacortes (especially Washington park for views over the water to the islands and ferries).

When leaving the area for Lynden, drive up "Chuckanut drive" which runs along the coast from Burlington and Bellingham, and stop at Larabee state park. At the end of the drive, check out Bellingham. Then drive across the Lynden.

If you have more time, go to Birch Bay state park near Blaine.

If you haven't been to Canada, drive over the border (either at Blaine or Lynden) just to say you've been (bring your passports).

Other options would be to drive into the mountains (either in a loop along Mountain Loop Hwy through Granite Falls, or along Hwy 20 into the North Cascades National Park), but April is a little to early for these routes to be open.

Anacortes...
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3. Re: Seattle to Lynden in 4 days

I agree with the last poster for the first leg, ferry to whidbey then up the island to deception pass...I would stay in Anacortes though, don't go all the way into Mt Vernon....you would end up back tracking! Check other anacortes forum posts for hotel recomendations. Spend some time at Deception Pass, in Anacortes make sure you get to Washington Park and the top of Mt Erie for a great view of the area then when you head north again, take the Farm to Market rd off Hwy 20 (detour into LaConnor if you have time) that will cross with Chuckanut which will take you into the Fairhaven district of Bellingham. I also agree with taking the Sunset hwy and not Guide Meridian to Lynden...if you have the time.

Los Angeles
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4. Re: Seattle to Lynden in 4 days

Thank you all for your ideas. They all sound like great ways to see the coast and some islands. In the interest of weighing all my options, would there be any inland route that could rival these in terms of scenery and/or interesting small towns?

Thanks!

Anacortes...
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5. Re: Seattle to Lynden in 4 days

The only option I can think of would be to take hwy 2 over Stevens Pass to Leavenworth, stay the night, then head east to Chelan and catch the north cascades hwy to Winthrop (old west town) for a night then that will drop you back into Sedro Woolley where, dependent on time, you could actually continue across to still go up Chuckanut drive to B'ham. This route will expose you to the mountains and some of the orchard areas of Washington. Very pretty but I still prefer the coast! You can make the trip in two days with no problem if you don;t want two overnights.

Seattle
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6. Re: Seattle to Lynden in 4 days

The North Cascades Highway won't be open when they are here; the projected opening date is mid-May. So the mountain route won't work.

An alternate route that would provide a nice hiking opportunity would be to go from Seattle to Port Townsend on Thursday, detouring a bit for a hike up Mt. Walker, a great viewpoint. This trail is "hikeable" in April. Spend the night in Port Townsend and enjoy the trails and views at Fort Worden State Park. Then take the ferry to Whidbey Island and continue up from there as already recommended. Or you could spend half of Friday driving as far as Sequim for a hike out along Dungeness Spit.

West Coast
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7. Re: Seattle to Lynden in 4 days

Oh - if you want to come almost to the Canadian Border, or even visit Vancouver - and Whistler Mountain for a day?- a wonderful city in the sun, you MUST stay at the Birch Bay Getaway, just south of the border, and west of Lynden. It is FABULOUS!! For $95 you get a really well appointed, granite counter - kitchen, CLEAN bath, tranquil setting, renovated cottage. Compared to the $75 for grotty 2 BR Dritwood Inn (we stayed only 1 night), this is serene and lovely. There are about 10 quaint cabins in what feels like a very special location - lovely gardens, flowers, ....

At low tide, stroll the wide beach in your bare feet! We are leaving today, and have had a great stay, only 4 days. We'll be back. This is a GEM!!!

8. Re: Seattle to Lynden in 4 days

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