My main goal of Blog Party is to connect bloggers with each other so I'm always so thrilled to hear about people networking after our events. Of course, when I can collaborate for my own blog, it's great too! I met blogger Jessica, of Thread and Bones, at the Social Print Studio Blog Party and was thrilled to have her guest post on JforJamie. Jessica is an amazing photographer and blogger and documents her travels all over the world. Today, Jessica shares some hidden secrets with us from her recent trip to Seattle. The way she travels is exactly how Chris and I love to travel - off the beaten path. I want to jet off to Seattle right now, I mean look at that seaside picnic!
Seattle is such a vibrant, beautiful city with fantastic spots to eat, walk through, browse and explore -- it’s one of my favorite locations for a home-away-from-home getaway from San Francisco. That being said it took me quite a couple trips before getting a handle on how to experience Seattle like a local, and I’m excited to share those secrets here with you! Read on for how to experience Seattle like you live there.
Local Secret #1: Don’t drink coffee at Starbucks Avoid Pike’s Place and head south to Pioneer Square. This historic part of town has gorgeous eye candy architecture, and quiet Zeitgeist Cafe is an awesome, steam-punk coffee shop with some great brews and a killer vibe. Start your weekend with a caffeine boost there before strolling around the corner to East Smith Mercantile, Laguna Pottery, and whatever other funky little vintage shops and speciality boutiques catch your eye. For lunch, look no further than the London Plane, with fresh, seasonal West Coast cuisine. Order the assortment of in-house spreads (my favs were the beet hummus with harissa and roasted red peppers + cashew dip) and share a couple plates of salads and grains (the curry chicken salad is one of the best things I’ve ever eaten).
Bonus: if you want to dig further into Seattle’s history you can take their spooky and fun underground tour
Local Secret #2: The Real Seattle Farmer’s Market As I mentioned, Pike’s Place is really not worth the visit in my opinion. You can get better, cheaper, fresher produce and watch salmon fly through the air by by heading across the bridge to old town Ballard. The Ballard Farmer’s Market here is open year round, rain or shine, and offers an incredible variety of produce, cheeses, nuts, jams, breads, foraged products, prepared foods and even wines; is wonderful for shopping, grabbing lunch, or just getting a cup of coffee at the Anchored Ship and people watching. To see more photos of the market, check out my recent post on the event Jessica's blog, Thread and Bones!
Bonus: Afterwards, take a short jaunt (10 min walk) along the water to the Ballard Locks. September is actually the best time to catch a sight of wild salmon running upstream through the lock’s fish ladder!
Local Secret #3: Nature in the City Washington state is renowned for its hiking and outdoor adventure offerings, but you don’t have to leave the city to experience some nature. Spend the morning trekking through beautiful Discovery Park; swim in the ocean, or just lay out and admire the views of the sound and the ring of mountains around you. This is a perfect place to also get in one final savoring of the summer before it ends -- the area is beautiful in September so pack a seaside picnic like we did here, with cooked crab, cheese and olives, a light chowder, and pre-roasted lemons, fennel and carrots that were just as good cool as fresh out of the oven on this hot day pictured.
Bonus: If you’re curious about cooking up some of that summer corn and fennel chowder for yourself, check out local blogger, Cannelle et Vanille has the recipe.
Local Secret #4: Worth the wait for a table Local celebrity Molly Wizenberg, of cooking blog Orangette, opened her own restaurant Delancey a few years ago, but it’s still running strong as a priceless neighborhood gem. This is a perfect spot to visit for lunch after the Ballard Farmer’s market, and has some of the best pizza I’ve eaten in a long time. The menu is nicely rounded out with super fresh, delicious salads, wine, beer and cocktails, and some gluten free options as well.