Seattle is responsible for giving Vancouver the hipster and the Starbucks cup. If you enjoy looking at yuppies dressed in tatty brown sweaters, ripped jeans, large reading glasses, with an iPhone in one hand and a Starbucks cup in the other, talking loudly about some inane topic, then Seattle is the perfect place for you.
The Public Market has been on every sappy movie since Sleepless in Seattle. This must be one of the most photographed signs on the West Coast, but this doesn’t dissuade every tourist from taking at least five of their own selfies pulling the peace-sign. What’s not to love about Seattle? Well, let me tell you. It is overpopulated, overpriced, loud, and obnoxious.
Despite all this, there are a few things to like about Seattle. The food is pretty good and you can beat those American freedoms. The Cheesecake Factory is known, obviously, for its cheesecake, but you only find that out if you can manage the gigantic meal portion for dinner. If you’re from Vancouver then you probably only eat quinoa and kale smoothies, so you’re going to hate the food.
The Seattle Ferris Wheel is pretty nice and gives you a nice view of the over-industrialized city. The market may be festering with people, but it does have some quirky stores with some interesting trinkets. Plus, you can’t beat watching the fish being thrown at the fish market. The buskers are generally of a pretty high quality and drown out some of the more hateful noises.
Seattle has a space needle, like every big city. If you’ve seen one, then you’ve seen them all. Expect sprawling suburbia for as far as the eye can see, with a mix of ocean-infinity. It’s also overpriced and underwhelming.
For those that identify with the “hipster” stereotype, then Seattle might not be a complete write-off. It is a creative hub, with artistry and music galore. You can park your fixie bike and get an orange-mocha-frappuccino™ and a tasty craft beer on every corner.
Despite the movie’s misleading name, you can get a good nights sleep in Seattle. Staying in downtown Seattle can be pretty expensive. However, if you have a car you have many more options. Bellevue is a lovely (very quiet) suburb, with cheaper accommodation than downtown and a lovely atmosphere. This a good spot for a family or a group of friends, but not a sole traveler. You can also drive around the waterfront and spot the mansions of the Seattle elite.
Overall, Seattle is worth a visit and gives you a taste of the American lifestyle, but do not think that this is quintessential America. It’s more progressive (read hipster) than the rest of America, but it serves a good beer. Love it or hate it, it’s worth a look.