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Convenient Overnite in Seattle on the way to Port Angeles?

California
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Convenient Overnite in Seattle on the way to Port Angeles?

Which neighborhoods in Seattle would be convenient for stopovers on the way to Port Angeles? (I'm thinking about trying to minimize getting snarled in traffic, and getting lost?) We'd also like to maximize fun!

My husband and I are flying from San Diego to Seattle for a relaxing, romantic getaway to the Olympic National Park area.

Our flight arrives in Seattle airport at dinner time on a week night. We'll want an interesting dinner, preferably in a locally owned eatery with tasty ethnic food, not in a boring chain restaurant. Then the next morning we'll head in our rental car for Port Angeles.

After spending 3 nights in Port Angeles area and then 2 nights near Forks, we'll drive back to Seattle and will need another overnite. Once again we'll hope to have dinner in a locally owned restaurant with interesting ethinic food, not in a boring chain. We might have time to have a walk in an interesting part of Seattle.

I've had a look on-line but Seattle looks complicated. Not sure where to stay. These neighborhoods sound interesting to me:

Madrona, Queen Anne, Ballard, Fremont, Greenlake, and West Seattle. (judging from reading the tripadvisor article.)

But I'm not sure which neighborhoods would be convenient as far as our driving plans? (Arrive at airport; spend 1 night in Seattle; then drive to Port Angeles the next morning. Then, at end of trip, drive from Forks to Seattle, spend 1 night, then fly home.

Thanks for any tips about which areas would be convenient for us to stay in. Generally, my first requirement of a hotel or b&b is a quiet night's sleep!

We ate at a fantastic Ethiopian restaurant in Washington DC! Haven't had any terrific Ethiopian food since then. We love trying different kinds of food. Looking forward to our first trip to Washington.

California
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1. Re: Convenient Overnite in Seattle on the way to Port Angeles?

I just realized that we will have almost a full day to explore Seattle at the end of our trip. Our return flight leaves in the evening...and since we're spending our last night in Seattle, that gives us a day to explore Seattle.

Seattle
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2. Re: Convenient Overnite in Seattle on the way to Port Angeles?

The thing is those areas you name are residential neighborhoods. Except for Queen Anne I can't think of any hotels in any of them?

If you like B&B's I will suggest my own neighborhood, Capitol Hill, which is just 2 miles from downtown, and has easy access to I-5 freeway. Also loads of fun ethnic places to eat. Seattle definitely has some Ethiopian restaurants. More so though we had tons of great Asian places... Thai, Japanese, Chinese, Vietmanese. www.sbmansion.com is a couple blocks from my house right near Volunteer Park.

Port Angeles, WA
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3. Re: Convenient Overnite in Seattle on the way to Port Angeles?

Melissa, the answer to your question depends on the route you are taking to Port Angeles. If you are taking the Bainbridge Island Ferry, stay downtown. The ferry is just a short distance away from the Sheraton, the Fairmont, the Four Seasons, the Westin, the Andra, and a host of less expensive boutique hotels. You can walk to any number of great restaurants in the area.

If you are taking the Edmonds Ferry, you will want to stay north of Seattle. I don't recommend this, as you seem interested in staying in Seattle proper as opposed to its outskirts.

If, for some reason, you want to take the Tacoma Narrows Bridge, you should stay south of the city or in the airport area. The latter is rather bleak in terms of scenery and restaurants, so you would probably want to drive into town for dinner.

Overall, I would recommend the downtown area and a departure via the Bainbridge Island Ferry. Get to the ferry parking lot with at least one half hour to spare. Allowing for about 1/2 hour waiting time, the total trip to PA will be just under three hours.

California
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4. Re: Convenient Overnite in Seattle on the way to Port Angeles?

kaleberg, thanks for a very informative reply! I didn't realize there were so many choices in routes from Seattle to Port Angeles.

I think we will take the Bainbridge Island ferry, as it's mentioned in my travel info along with directions... If you were driving from Seattle to Port Angeles, which route would you prefer?

So, if we're taking the Bainbridge Island Ferry, maybe we will stay downtown as you have pointed out the ferry is very convenient to downtown. I will check out those hotels you've mentioned, and also will try to find out about the boutique hotels in the downtown area. Great to know we can walk to great restaurants in the area!

How big is the downtown Seattle area? (Our downtown San Diego area is actually small compared to many other cities. We have everything else all spread out here.) If I check out hotel or b&b listings, I will want to make sure they are in the right area. If they are considered "downtown", will that be close enough...or do I need to consider which side of downtown I'm on?

Do you think I'll be able to find a quiet room downtown? (I'm a light sleeper at night. I like a room which avoids traffic noise and people noise. sometimes a quiet side street works for me, or some hotels have a quiet side away from the street. But I'm wondering if downtown will be noisy...probably so I guess, as most downtowns are, but it may still work as long as my room is quiet at night.

On our return trip, we'll be spending a night in Seattle before we leave the following evening. Therefore we don't need to be convenient to Port Angeles at the end of our trip. We could be anywhere in Seattle. Airport area sounds boring. But we will need to drive to the airport at the end of the day, when we are done exploring Seattle.

Is there any advantage to staying north of Seattle in the outskirts of Seattle and taking the Edmonds ferry? Well, I think that is further from the airport for one thing...I think? Need to check the map again.

Many thanks, kaleberg!

suze2you: Maybe I can consider Capitol Hill area for the end of our trip. We love having loads of fun ethnic restaurants to choose from. Is Capitol Hill convenient to drive to the airport? We'll have a fun day to explore Seattle at the end of the trip. Do you have any favorite restaurants? We like Ethiopian, Thai, Cuban, Asian, and anyplace with great food...Vegetarian restaurants often have great food even though we're NOT vegetarians. We like food that is healthy, flavorful or spicy, with fresh ingredients, and in locally owned restaurants.

Well I'm getting off the subject onto food...yum! This post is meant to help me choose which areas of Seattle to stay in.

Tacoma
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5. Re: Convenient Overnite in Seattle on the way to Port Angeles?

Let me disagree with Kaleberg.

There are several good restaurants in the South end.

And if you get off the freeway there are many scenic viewpoints along the way. However, it takes extra time.

I think Redondo beach, Dash Point, Browns Point, Ruston Way, Point Defiance park, Narrows park, Gig Harbor, Port Orchard and Siverdale's waterfront park are very scenic. Plus there are several state parks along the way, all scenic.

California
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6. Re: Convenient Overnite in Seattle on the way to Port Angeles?

NorthTacoma, I welcome everyone's input. My mind is boggled about how many great spots there are to visit in Seattle area (and in the state of Washington!) What a lovely problem to have...

I'm pleased to realize, as I looked at our schedule, that we will actually have a day at the end of our trip to see Seattle.

I usually don't like staying in parts of big cities where there is traffic and tall buildings, which tend to feel claustrophobic to me. Usually I prefer to stay somewhere that has more of a neighborhood feel, with b&bs and good restaurants with a local flavor. However, at the beginning of our trip, I think since we're arriving at dinner time on our flight...it makes sense to stay in an area of town which is convenient for our drive the next morning to Port Angeles. We will want to get out of the city of Seattle without getting lost (hopefully)...and take a scenic route to Port Angeles, which is a 3-hour drive or less...

But as I mentioned, at the end of our trip when we return from Forks to Seattle, we could stay anywhere that is convenient to visit Seattle for a day, and then still be convenient enough to drive to the airport. We have a night and 1 full day to see Seattle at the end of our trip.

Thanks everyone for the guidance.

Port Angeles, WA
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7. Re: Convenient Overnite in Seattle on the way to Port Angeles?

Oh we are not disagreeing, North Tacoma. I meant Sea-Tac, specifically, not the whole southern area. Tacoma is a great town, too.

However, I do recommend the Bainbridge Island Ferry for the trip to PA. I live in Port Angeles and have driven into Seattle and back many times. This is the route I always take unless I am going straight to or from the airport, in which case I take the Tacoma Narrows Bridge.

Melissa, you have nothing to worry about in terms of street noise if you stay in one of the big chain hotels like the Sheraton or the Fairmont. You won't hear a thing. However, one or two of the small boutiques, including, I believe, the Inn at the Harbor Steps, lack air conditioning. If you are a light sleeper avoid these places, charming as they are. If you need strong air conditioning, as some of us do, avoid the Hyatt and, alas, lovely little Hotel Andra. The latter has a great restaurant, Lola, serving North African/Greek food, and the rooms are lovely, but the AC is weak.

You might try Monsoon on Capital Hill for Asian fusion cooking. There is a strong Thai influence as well as a Vietnamese Influence. If you walk a few blocks into the residential neighborhood near the restaurant, you will find magnificent old craftsman style houses with beautiful trees and gardens. Tamarind Tree in the International District is another good choice. They have excellent Vietnamese food. Palace Kitchen, which is well within walking distance of the Sheraton, Westin, etc... is a great place for Tom Douglas' Pacific Northwest cooking. They serve many small plates so you can try different things.

Berea, Ohio
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8. Re: Convenient Overnite in Seattle on the way to Port Angeles?

<<Melissa, you have nothing to worry about in terms of street noise if you stay in one of the big chain hotels like the Sheraton....>>

What Kaleberg states is true...at least in my experience at the Sheraton 7/3-7/5. I tend to be a light sleeper myself, and yet the only noise I heard from our corner room on the 20th floor of the newer Union Tower was the muffled booms of fireworks at Lake Union on the 4th. Much less than when we've stayed in Philadelphia, DC, SF.

We booked through Hotwire at $115/night and upgraded with a additional $20/night to the king deloxe room.

If you're planning on picking up your rental car the day you're leaving rather than at SeaTac (considerable savings), Alamo/Hilton is less than two blocks from Sheraton.

Berea, Ohio
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9. Re: Convenient Overnite in Seattle on the way to Port Angeles?

BTW in terms of your time in Port Angeles, let me say that besides our epicurean breakfast feasts at Colette's B&B there, a good (fresh, local, organic) option was Alder Wood Bistro in Sequim.

California
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10. Re: Convenient Overnite in Seattle on the way to Port Angeles?

kaleberg, great info, thanks very much! I'll be back soon to pester you with more questions. (-: What a nice area you live in...do you like hikes or nature walks in the Olympic park area?