Bellevue, Washington, is Seattle's neighbor across Lake Washington. This vibrant city combines urban living with a variety of outdoor amenities. Here visitors are only minutes away from shopping, entertainment, and nature trails.
Must see in Bellevue
Shop at the popular Bellevue Square, part of the Bellevue Collection of shops and restaurants in the downtown core. Visitors looking for outdoor fun for families will enjoy the Mercer Slough Nature Park with its trails, a blueberry farm, educational center, and canoe rentals. Or have fun golfing at the 18-hole Bellevue Municipal Golf Course in the Bridal Trails neighborhood.
Where to stay in Bellevue
Downtown Bellevue is where visitors looking to be close to the nightlife should stay. Bowl and play arcade games all day and stay late to enjoy live DJs at Lucky Strike Lanes. To be closer to family oriented activities, the Eastgate neighborhood offers easy access to the KidsQuest Museum in Factoria, as well as various parks and trails. There are Bellevue hotels along I-90 or SR 520 that have some reasonably priced accommodations within easy distance of sightseeing.
Best and worst time go to Bellevue
The best time to visit Bellevue is from late June to mid July, when low- to mid-70s temperatures make for comfortable walks and dining outdoors. The holiday season, from late October through December, brings throngs of shoppers. But if you don't mind the crowds, Bellevue has a number of holiday activities worth experiencing, such as the Garden d'Lights and a seasonal ice-skating rink.
Where to get lost in Bellevue
Enjoy a stroll down the old downtown area of Main Street and follow it all the way to Meydenbauer Park. Or hike up NE 8th Street through the Bellevue Collection all the way to the upscale Shops at Bravern. On your way back, stop for a movie at Lincoln Square Cinemas.
The best deal in Bellevue
Enjoy a walk through the Bellevue Botanical Garden with 54 acres of well-maintained grounds. Parking is free and admission is free, so explore to your heart's content.
Transportation in Bellevue
Walking will get you to most places in Downtown Bellevue, and the outer neighborhoods are easily accessible by public transit. But if you would rather not have to plan your day around bus schedules or would like to take advantage of nearby attractions outside of Bellevue, a rental car would be helpful.
Getting In from Seatac International Airport
If you are not renting a car at the airport, you may easily reach Bellevue by cab or by Airport Shuttle services. You may also check with your hotel, as some offer free hotel shuttles for airport pick-up and drop-off.
Local tip for visitors to Bellevue
Bellevue offers both urban attractions and outdoor activities. Bring along sensible shoes that will be comfortable for walking through the malls and on trails. Families with small children should pack a stroller for long walks.
Author's bio: Jae Holt is a freelance writer and novelist, and an avid reader of science fiction and fantasy. When she isn't writing or reading, she is looking for fun things to do with her family.