Three Summers Ago I visited the United States for what was going to be an epic road trip. It was my first time traveling overseas, it was the first time I had to apply for a visa and it was my first long distance flight.
A lot of first times happened this trip, but it was perfect.
Our five week trip started in Seattle. A great city with a wonderful, quirky history. Beautiful landmarks, modern buildings and old (underground) streets that have entire stories of their own.
Seattle defined my first impression of the States, and while I didn’t fell in love with the city, it was the best road-trip beginning I could have asked for.
Where we stayed
My parents booked an Airbnb-like apartment at the south of Seattle – right in front of the ocean. Our hosts said they could hear whales every now and then. Too bad we weren’t as lucky.
Our hosts were two lovely locals – a slightly older couple. For the entire week we only saw them together. The woman, who felt like the ‘stronger’ personality in the household, welcoming us into her home. She was always chatting happy and giving us tips about what so ever and giving us advice about everything we asked. She was followed by her husband. A thin, long, pale man. Very bright, very strong. He built this house, by himself. She probably decorated it – given the number of flower-decorated furniture pieces they had.
The lower floor was completely ours. Quite big. But as I quickly learned during the next few weeks: everything is big in America. I remember how shocked I was when I saw their couch, tv and even their kitchen towels. Literally everything was big.
It made a great home away from home though. The owners of the house taught us how to make S’mores, invited us over for coffee and showed us where to go and where not to go.
The city from above
I always like to visit a panoramic view. Whether a tower, a building, a terrace – I just like to watch a city from above. It gives you a completely different perspective – it creates structure in the middle of chaos. Seattle was no exception: we found a panoramic view. No, we didn’t visit the Space Needle – we visited the Sky View Observatory.
From above Seattle is built in blocks, just like any other city in America basically. The main center is surrounded with water. I can see the baseball stadium – where a game is playing, I can see the ferris wheel and afar I can see Mount Rainier.
The city from below
What now seems to be the basement of a regular building in Seattle, used to be the first floor. Because of destroying fires and a muddy ground Seattle decided to build their buildings into the ground to make for a steadier – back then safer – building construction. Now Seattle has a huge underground network filled with tunnels and old streets. It’s a huge tourist attraction now, because of course now the habitants of Seattle don’t live as moles anymore. And so, as real tourists we decided to take the Seattle underground tour as well – to find out all about the old, underground streets. To see the former entrances of banks, hotels and shops and to learn about Seattle ‘back in the day’.
Searching for killer whales
A la Free Willy we really wanted to meet our own little group of killer whales. So we booked a whale watching tour at the fourth day we visited Seattle. A beautiful cruise along the coast of Seattle – and even over the border of Canada. There was a 98% we were going to see killer whales – if we didn’t get to see them we could join another day.
Let’s just say, we spent a total of two days on the boat, and I haven’t got any photos to show you of killer whales. Talking about bad luck.
Although in the end we didn’t see any (killer)whales, we did spot a lot of dolphins, a puffin and a lot of sea lions. Oh and I got a tan.
So in the end, it was all worth it;-)
Visiting the Museum of Glass
At the foot of one of the biggest highlights in Seattle – the Space Needle, we stumbled upon the Chihuly Garden and Glass. A beautiful museum filled with glass statues and art installations from Dale Chihuly. A perfect little visit in the city of Seattle, where you’ll meet one of the most beautiful glass gardens you’ll ever spot! It’s beautiful, unique and it makes you wonder how artists can find art in the most every-day objects. It doesn’t feel like visiting a museum, it’s just a nice, serene walk through a beautiful, quiet place in the middle of the hectic center of Seattle.