Perhaps you're thinking of staying in the Northwest a little longer when you come for the HNA conference in Seattle? Let me inspire you with some of my sojourns the past few days.
One day, my husband and I woke early to catch the 7:00 Sounder Train to Tacoma, WA. Tacoma is about 35 miles South of Seattle. It's a pretty easy drive on the I-5 freeway, provided you don't get stuck in some rush hour traffic! There is also very easy bus service. But we wanted to take the train, and it was a great time. Cost was just about $4.50 per person, each way.
Now, locals might wonder what might bring me to go to Tacoma, but the answer is, what isn't there to do?! Click here for information on travel and tourism in Tacoma/Pierce County. We got off the Sounder Train, and hopped the FREE Link Light Rail. After a short walk, we enjoyed a fabulous breakfast at Hotel Murano complete with view of Mt. Rainier!
We then walked down to the Thea Foss Waterway Seaport and explored the museum and walked along the docks. Tacoma has a load of great museums. We also went to Tacoma Art Museum and the Washington State History Museum. I have already been to the Museum of Glass, which features renowned glass artist Dale Chihuly's collection and glass blowing hot shop. We had a great time in Tacoma. I would also suggest visiting Point Defiance Zoo and Aquarium or visiting Mt. Rainier National Park. For those of you who want to visit Mt. Rainier only, there are bus tours leaving from Seattle you can arrange.
Another day of our staycation, we rode the ferry to Vashon Island. This ferry doesn't leave from downtown Seattle. You have to drive to the terminal, or take a city METRO bus to the terminal, which is easy. There is also bus service on the Island.
This is a very artistic community, so if you're looking for something truly northwest, this is the heart of Puget Sound. With 45 miles of shoreline, Vashon Maury Island boasts the majority of waterfront property in King County. The Island is approximately 13 miles long and 8 miles at the widest point with a year-round population of about 11,000. Whether you are looking for a quiet, romantic place to relax or activities for you and the entire family, Vashon has it all!
We stayed at one of the many guest houses on the Island. There are dozens of Bed and Breakfast places, NO hotels, and one campground. Driving around the Island was fun, we made friends wherever we went. There are hiking and walking trails everywhere, a lighthouse, wineries, art studios, coffee roaster, great restaurants and a charming town.
I know many of you will be coming just for our Haiku North America, but if you have extra time to stay in the Northwest, I am happy to answer your questions and offer suggestions on things to do and see! I'll consider myself Haiku North America's concierge! Best, Katharine