6 Days in Portland/Seattle
March 25, 2015 3:19 PM   Subscribe

This (very) recent question had a lot of good suggestions of things to do in Portland, but I'm in Portland and Seattle for several days each this weekend, and I'm looking for advice about what to do in both cities. Difficulty: like outdoorsy things, but don't have a car.

We'd love suggestions for good food, good drinks, cool things to see, events unique to this week/weekend (starting this evening), and especially: hiking/outdoorsy things that can be accomplished without a car.

We're in Portland today through Saturday morning, and Seattle Saturday afternoon through Monday morning.

posted by stoneandstar to Travel & Transportation around Portland, OR (9 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
Response by poster: Oh and as Midwesterners we're especially looking for suggestions for GREAT, fresh seafood that isn't a million dollars!
posted by stoneandstar at 3:20 PM on March 25, 2015

If you want to stop by Bike Farm between now and this evening, I can lend you my guest bike.
posted by aniola at 3:25 PM on March 25, 2015

When I was in Seattle in July (which, admittedly, is quite different from March) I rented kayaks from the Agua Verde Paddle Club and kayaked around Lake Union and into the Arboretum, which was actually super cool because there are waterways/passages there that you can kayak through and it feels like a different experience. It's certainly not the mountains, but I think much of the beauty of the Pacific NW is the water and it's a fun way to see it.

The club is easy to get to by bus, as I didn't have a car when I was in Seattle either.
posted by andrewesque at 3:28 PM on March 25, 2015 [4 favorites]

My go-to website for hiking around Portland is the Oregon Hiker's Field Guide. Many of the hikes in Portland can be reached by bus, for instance, this Hoyt Arboretum Loop hike.
posted by elmay at 3:58 PM on March 25, 2015

Discovery Park in Seattle is going to be the best hiking-like outdoorsy outing in Seattle. It's pretty easy to get to by bus. You can take the 33 bus from downtown right to the park

Unfortunately the next few days or so in Seattle are probably going to be typical Seattle spring weather--cool and cloudy, intermittent rain, and maybe "sun breaks" if you're lucky--so be ready for that.

There are other parks and beaches in Seattle that are nice (maybe not the beaches if the weather's nasty) to wander around in but none of them are really as good as Discovery Park if your time is limited: Carkeek Park, Golden Gardens, Alki Beach, Washington Park Arboretum, Lincoln Park. Volunteer Park has a conservatory which could be nice if the weather is really bad.
posted by sevenless at 4:01 PM on March 25, 2015

Seattle's Kubota Garden is a unique and beautiful place to walk around. It's accessible by bus, though it's not very close to the city center. There's also a smaller Japanese garden at the Arboretum, which might be more convenient if you're doing other things in that area.

A ferry ride is a nice way to see the Puget Sound.
posted by mbrubeck at 5:02 PM on March 25, 2015 [1 favorite]

Take the West Seattle ferry, Marination Ma Kai is a fun, casual restaurant. Enjoy Molly Moon ice cream every chance you can, two flavors in a small scoop, truly fabulous.
posted by jennstra at 5:46 PM on March 25, 2015

Seattle Underground Tour is a great way to get a glimpse of the city's history in a couple hours. Good rainy-day activity, since, well, it's underground much of the time, though the groups move around on the streets from location to location. It starts at a bar called Doc Maynard's in Pioneer Square.

Keep that in your back pocket, though, as it looks like it'll be cloudy but dryish this weekend.

Get a free app called OneBusAway on your smartphone-- it will locate nearby bus stops and give you mostly-accurate arrival times based on the city bus-tracking system. Use Google Maps to get bus routes figured out. $2.75 off-peak fare should run all weekend. I think they have a weekend pass of some kinda you can get.

My cigar shop is in the same building as the Electric Boat Company, so I know them pretty well; if you'd like to get around Lake Union with a little more oomph than a kayak. All you need is a driver's license (and, well, $200). BYO food and drink, or stop somewhere on the lake.
posted by Sunburnt at 11:29 PM on March 25, 2015

We run a real-life room escape game (self-link) here in Portland, if you're interested in puzzles/theatrics/group fun. It's in the SE waterfront area, and there are a lot of good places to eat and drink nearby, plus the fantastic and friendly boardgames shop Guardian Games, and the new location of Cargo.
posted by lhall at 11:31 AM on March 26, 2015

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