Monday, June 21, 2010

Alki Beach

I feel so blessed to live in Seattle. Restaurants galore, some of the best farmer's markets in the world, fabulous shopping, year long sporting events, great music venues and crazy delicious coffee! And in the middle of all of this is the crown jewel-Alki Beach. You don't even need a car to get there. Head to Pier 50 on the Seattle waterfront and take the King County Water Taxi.
It's a beautiful  10 minute ride over to Alki. Don't forget your camera -you will get some incredible skyline pictures !. The water taxi arrives at the dock at Seacrest Park .  Stop for lunch at  Alki Crab & Fish and get some of the best fish and chips along with a gorgeous view  After lunch you have your choice of adventures, rent a kayak,in line skates,a fishing boat, bicycle or long board all from Alki Kayak Tours

Not feeling that adventurous ? Start walking south along the promenade. Walk about 2 miles and you will be in the heart of Alki  Beach.

Alki Beach is the birthplace of Seattle.  On November 13, 1851 the Schooner Exact landed there and the Denny Party started to establish themselves with a camp.  A few months later, Arthur Denny, John Bell and Carson Boren paddled over to the east side of Elliott Bay and founded the actual town of Seattle.  Besides the monument that commemorates Alki Beach as the birthplace of Seattle, walk just past the Bathhouse you will find a miniature reproduction of the Statue of Liberty.  The  Alki statue, or SeaLady is an exact replica of the original Statue of Liberty.  It was presented to the City of Seattle in 1952 by the Boy Scouts of America to celebrate their 40th birthday in the United States.

If you didn't stop for lunch at  Alki Crab & Fish and those hunger pangs are getting stronger, no worries. You have your choice of food. From casual outdoor dining at Slices to the small plates at Phoenecia.-don't miss the famous cinnamon rolls at the Alki Bakery or one of the best mojitos on the beach at Cactus !  It's a sunny day and you don't feel like restaurant dining- then stop by the Alki Urban Market and put together your own little picnic for lunch on the beach.

While you are in the area of the Statue of Liberty and  Alki Bathhouse  stop in and see if any of the artists are at work or join a Pilates class to work off that lunch you just enjoyed !

Are you a lighthouse buff ?  Then start peddling a little further south-just about 1/2 mile and you will discover the Alki Lighthouse

Photo by Liza Phoenix Courtesy of Wikipedia Commons

Bicycle or walk along the beach in either direction-you can't go wrong. In the summer you will find the beach jammed with sun worshippers,volleyball players,in line skaters,bicyclers,dog walkers and people from all over the world.  The crowds swell in the summertime and a party atmosphere is embraced by all.  And if you are in town for Seattle Seafair you must come to Alki and join in the festivities when the Seafair Pirates kick off the start of Seattle's Seafair Celebration with the annual Pirates Landing at Alki Beach .They will be arriving  on July 10, 2010 between 11:30 and 12:30.  It's a fun family event and an Alki Beach tradition.  There is always something happening at the beach during the summertime.  And in the fall when the majority of tourists and sunworshippers head for warmer beaches Alki Beach turns back into a lovely place to while away hours sitting in the warm sun with the cool breezes blowing off the water.  Or when the rains come, sitting in one of the coffee houses with a hot cup of your favorite beverage while watching storms roll in and out. And don't miss the arrival of the Christmas Ships-a great holiday tradition, listening to the carolers while huddling around the bonfires drinking your hot chocolate !

End your visit  with dinner at  one of my favorite restaurants- a place known mainly to locals "La Rustica" . You will have to walk or bicycle a little further south (approximately 1-2 miles) but your efforts will be rewarded with some of the best Italian food in Seattle. Braised lamb shank, black cod, Linguine al Tartufo, Vanilla Creme Brulee, cannelloni, crusty steamy garlic bread, I could go on and on. It's a small space so be prepared to be elbow to elbow with other diners- go, have dinner, mangia, then let me know what you think.

 Alki Beach has always held a special place in my heart.  It's one of those places you want to share but are afraid if you do it will lose it's magic.  I don't think Alki will ever lose it's magic for me- I will always remember our first walk on the beach when we moved to Seattle and both felt so right about the move after that walk; it's the place that gives me refuge when I'm feeling down and  it's our go to place for every celebration imaginable.   And I'm happy to share it with you.. So check that water taxi schedule,pack your sun screen and head out to the beach !


  1. Thanks for sharing Seattle with us Sandy. These are previously undiscovered places to me so far.

  2. I live in West Seattle so I'm delighted to see your post. I am also a great lover of Alki. I love waking up to the sea air-- it's why I say over here!

  3. I love Alki, could live by the sea forever and ever...