Travel review: Japanese Gardens, Seattle

Today, I’m continuing my reviews from our holiday in Seattle last summer. Like any large city, the city centre feels busy even though Seattle has amazing views of nature even from the middle of town

However, at times, it’s nice to be able to escape the hurly burly and one of dad’s favourite quiet spots is at the eastern end of East Madison Street. If you’re driving east, turn left onto Lake Washington Boulevard East, where the Washington Park arboretum can be found. As you drive north, the Japanese Gardens will be on your left. There is free parking

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Teddy parachute jumps for charity

A year ago, I got the chance to raise money for charity and also become a parachute jumper like dad. Despite his fear of heights, dad had done a tandem jump on holiday in Cleveland but he couldn’t take me with him on the jump

However, he spotted an advert raising money for Action for Children. They were offering teddy bears the chance to jump off Winchester Cathedral for charity

It started off as a slightly gray day but it was the breeze which was more concerning for us intrepid jumpers. To be fair, the event organiser, Kim used her own teddy for the test jump to make sure it was safe


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Travel review: Pike Place Market, Seattle

Today, I’m continuing my series of travel reviews from our holiday to the USA last summer. After visiting the Space Needle at Seattle Center, dad, ‘future mom’ and I took the short monorail ride to Westlake Center in the downtown area. It’s fun to think that this was the world’s first monorail, built all the way back in 1962

As it was ‘future mom’s first visit to Seattle, we took her to one of Seattle’s other iconic tourist destinations, Pike Place Market. Perhaps a bit like Borough Market in London, locals may sneer at the touristy air about the place but there’s lots of great local produce available for both locals and visitors though I appreciate there may be a slight tourist mark up

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Travel review: Seattle Center

Today, I’m continuing my reviews from Seattle as I continue my series from my trip to the USA last year with ‘future mom’ and dad
Seattle Center is the site of the 1962 World Fair and remains a tourist destination in the northern part of downtown Seattle. It’s a nice stroll or you can take the Monorail from Westlake Centre

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Travel review: Space Needle

Some cities are famous for their skyline and thanks to the Space Needle, Seattle has a silhouette which will be familiar to fans of sitcom Frasier, which charted the trials of life of straight-laced psychiatrist Frasier Crane and his family

As it was ‘future mom’s first visit to Seattle, dad and I started our tour of the city with its most iconic sight. We wandered over from our Airbnb apartment in Belltown, a pleasant stroll through this quaint neighbourhood, stopping off for a quick pastry and drink at La Parisienne

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Travel review: Airbnb Belltown, Seattle

Dad grew up through the home computer revolution of the 80s and through the birth and growth of the internet. However, he’s not really an early adopter with even his parents beating him to be first to get an email address and a mobile phone

Dad was therefore late to the Airbnb world. He had heard about it but hadn’t used it before last summer’s trip. He decided to try it out when central Seattle prices turned out to be rather prohibitive

Basically, Airbnb allows users to rent out their private dwellings to other users. Airbnb carefully screen all users for safety purposes, using IDs like passports and driving licenses to confirm that the user is a real person. So, you will need some time up sign up. Once your ID had been verified, you can hire out your property or rent a property on the site from other Airbnb members

The Airbnb website is a joy to use. It’s quick and responsive with maps scrolling and updating quickly and smoothly Continue reading

Travel review: Seattle Tacoma International Airport

Affectionately known as SEATAC by locals, the airport is located about 10 miles south of downtown Seattle

Dad and I love watching the landing as the plane flies over the complex series of islands and waterways which surround the area. It’s always verdant and green, a lovely reminder of the wonderful nature that surrounds the city

 Unlike London’s Heathrow Airport, there’s a sense of space around SEATAC due to its development outside of the city limits. The main terminal building has 4 concourses with 2 satellite terminals, all connected by a rail shuttle system if you don’t fancy walking

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Travel review: Seattle

Continuing my reviews of my trip to the USA last summer with dad and ‘future mom’, we flew from New York to Seattle with JetBlue

If dad and I had to live in the USA, we would choose the Bay Area. There are many reasons but one of the top ones is the proximity to water. We’ve always felt an affinity to water and the Bay and Pacific Ocean lend a calming air to the city

In many ways, Seattle reminds us of San Francisco because it’s right by the water. In fact, in some ways, it’s prettier because it’s greener due to the rainfall, whereas northern California can become very brown in the summer. On the flipside, the weather in Seattle is meant to resemble rainy London with harsher winters

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Showing the cats who is top dog

Dad and ‘future mom’ will be getting married in August this year. I’m looking forward to us all moving in together after the wedding, the us including ‘future mom’s 2 half-Burmese cats, Khyber and Targa

I’m hoping that life will be like this after the move


However, just in case and at the risk of mixing my animal metaphors, I thought I’d better show Khyber who’s going to be top dog in the house  Continue reading

Travel review: USA west coast v east coast

As travellers with a serious case of wanderlust, dad and I used to wonder why so many Americans didn’t have a passport. However, when we started to travel around this vast country, we started to understand that it is a country of so many vistas, so many climates and so many contrasts

There are so many different places to explore within the USA that there’s no need for Americans to leave their own borders. As dad and I traveled more in the USA, we’ve come to appreciate the nuances and character if the different areas of the country

The east coast is closer to the UK and most Brits would probably be introduced to the USA with a visit to East Coast destinations like New York or in our case, Orlando. Yup, dad and I are definitely big kids!

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