Spring around the Compass: Family Getaways in the Pacific Northwest
Although many families head south for spring break, it can be overdone – crowded, tenuous “warm” weather, and a spring break mindset. However, spring is an excellent time to visit the Pacific Northwest! It’s full of culture, fun activities, and great places to eat. Bill Richards and Ashley Steel, based in Seattle (one of my Very Favorite cities), just finished a new book on family travel, Family on the Loose: The Art of Traveling with Kids. In their book, they talk about all the great mini-getaways near their home.
We asked them to share some of their favorite family-friendly local destinations in the Seattle area. Bet you’ll be planning a trip to Seattle soon, with this insider's knowledge of the Pacific Northwest tucked in your pocket.
North – Head north to Richmond, BC for a taste of China, where you can sample some of the best dim sum this side of the Pacific Ocean and visit the International Buddhist Temple , one of the largest Chinese-style temples in North America. Head into Vancouver, B.C. to visit the Vancouver Aquarium and Stanley Park. The brave can walk on swinging bridges amid the canopy of the great temperate rainforest. Remember to bring your passports!
West – Drive through Deception Pass and onto Whidbey Island, where you can wander the beaches or climb the battlements at Fort Casey & Keystone State Park. Hop a ferry (walk on – no need to pay for a car) from Whidbey Island to Pt. Townsend, a charming Victorian seaside town full of antiques, nice romantic restaurants, and cozy B&Bs. Staying overnight at Fort Worden can be a hoot for kids.
Another great kid destination to the west is the Olympic Game Farm in Sequim, where buffalo lick your windshield and deer eat bread out of your hand. Every teen in the area eventually ends up in Forks, the site of the Twilight series. You can experience the rain (most likely), buy every twilight knick-knack or t-shirt on Earth, and sleep in a Twilight Room at the local motel, the Pacific Inn. Your teens will be over the moon.Continued on the next page