Sunday, June 20, 2010
Bainbridge Island Hopping
It's not the Greek Isles, which have been at the top of my travel wish list for years, but Bainbridge Island is a tranquil getaway in its own right. Three trusted sources suggested I visit Bainbridge during my five-day trip to Seattle, so although boats and I generally don't get along (I'll spare you the unflattering details of a certain Winter 2004 sail to Ireland's Aran Islands), I decided to go for it.
Heading out under rain-threatening skies early this morning I paid the $6.90 round trip fare and boarded a surprisingly massive ferry from Seattle's Pier 52. The 35 minute ride flew by. Open decks provided stunning, albeit cold, views of Puget Sound, Seattle's skyline, gliding seagulls, cruise ships, and my island destination. I found that the best place to meet fellow travelers is on the top passenger deck at the front of the ferry. There aren't many who are willing to brave this location's brisk headwinds and occasional biting rain, but those who are willing are eager to meet their fellow view-seekers.
Once you land on Bainbridge Island it's only a 5-minute walk (follow the salmon!) to the main shopping and dining area. A few brunch spots were already hopping. Other establishments were still closed, so I'll have to go back if I want to browse the clothing boutiques or follow the island's wine-tasting trail. Bainbridge is an easy day trip from Seattle, but it would also make a nice main vacation destination of its own - a quiet place to get away from it all and enjoy the good life of food, drink, and relaxing by the water's edge. Sort of like Greece. Without the bikini weather.