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SF to Seattle

Solihull, United...
Level Contributor
53 posts
SF to Seattle

Hello

we are family of 4 with 2 kids age 10 and 12.

Have got a good deal on flights in and out of SFO with car hire for 18 nights in July/Aug

We have done the Yosemite down to LA trio before and loved it skate thinking to go north out of SF and maybe do around trip up to Seattle and back.

We would love ideas of possible itineraries!

Some ideas were to travel inland up to Seattle staying at some places. Maybe Lake Tahoe ( or is that too far) mount hood appeals esp timberline lodge!

Then up to Seattle then back down the coast to SF

Kids love water, esp jumping of rocks into water! All like cities as well, and nice restaurants.

Have had good fun in cabins where you can barbecue outdoors.

Any tips or itinerary ideas would be great!

Thanks in advance

Santa Rosa...
Level Contributor
147 posts
54 reviews
25 helpful votes
1. Re: SF to Seattle

Hi & welcome,

A few suggestions, North from SF on Hwy 101, stop in Santa Rosa., where we live. Our most famous resident is Charlie Brown and his dog Snoopy. The Schultz museum is great for adults and kids, even hands on cartooning. Statues of Peanuts statues are all over town. Stop at the Visitor Center in Railroad Square for a list. Drive Hwy 12 to Interstate 80 (I-80) if time, stop in our State Capitol, Sacramento, see Railroad museum in Old Town. Drive to Lake Tahoe. Spend one day driving around the Lake. If you can be for Independence Day, July 4th they have a great fireworks at the South side of the Lake. Book early for lodging. Take I-5 to Seattle. Beautiful old merry-go-round at the base of The Space Needle. Fun ferry boats to islands in Puget Sound. While in Seattle go to a baseball game, easy drive off the freeway. Coast Hwy is beautiful. Lighthouses are al unique. After entering into Oregon stop at the Lewis & Clark historical park. Next week we are staying at 2 Lighthouse B&B in Oregon one at Heceta other at Bandon. Plan to stay in Gold Beach and take Jerry's Jet boat up the Rogue River. Great fun & yes you will get wet. This is one of the last Mail Boats in the US. You can take the boat to Agness OR and rent a cabin at the Agness RV Park. Please remember that Oregon can be HOT. We cancelled a stay in Portland when it was 104 degrees. The coast is seldom hot. If theatre calls, drive to Ashland OR for the Shakespeare Festival. We will be attending two plays. both modern, Back to the Coast, South from Eureka drive the scenic route off of Hwy 101 to see Avenue of the Giants. Then head back to SF. If your not baseball fans, but just want the experience the best new style ballpark is to see the SF Giants. You can see 3 innings for FREE by standing in the Knot Hole, behind Right Field. The ballpark is at 3rd & King Streets on the Embarcadero. Best food of any US ballpark. It's not just hotdogs. Then before leaving visit Ross Alley Fortune Cookie Factory. Cheapest souvenir just a few bucks for a bag. If you think they taste like cardboard it's because the ones in restaurants are stale. Cookies are baked on vertical waffle irons. Buy a bag & take a picture. Pay to take a picture if you don't buy. if I think of other things I'll post. I didn't mention wine tasting, but its everywhere from Santa Rosa to Seattle.

Happy trails,

Betz

b

Solihull, United...
Level Contributor
53 posts
2. Re: SF to Seattle

Thanks so much for this it's really helpful!

So you don't think this is just too many miles to be doing with kids?

That's my slight concern, much as I would love to!

Oregon
Level Contributor
424 posts
31 reviews
23 helpful votes
3. Re: SF to Seattle

I would drive north out of the urban area of San Francisco and head to 101; Mendocino is very charming and right on the ocean. Meander north to see the Redwoods; they really are magnificent. There are short hikes, lots to ooh and aaah at. North of there you will cross into Oregon which has a beautiful coastline; You could travel the whole coast south to north but that would be a bit of a haul as there are so many places to see. There are many places to cut inland -- I would probably head inland just north of Lincoln City on Hwy 22; that way you get to see the central coast. Places to stay along the way going south to north: Bandon [small, charming, beautiful beaches]; Yachats [very small; charming;]; Newport [larger fishing port -- not as charming but many tourist services and kid things to do [aquarium, gawking at sea lions, etc.]; Depoe Bay [whale watching trip]. Note that these are not big cities.

Personally, I am not all that fond of sand dune rides, but the kids would no doubt love it [near Florence].

Cutting inland, you could travel north on 99W [2-lane] and stop at small wineries on your way to Portland. Or head more inland and get on the interstate to head north. One idea is to stop at Silver Creek Falls State Park for a hike or two [several waterfalls].

If you like waterfalls, you could travel east out of Portland and travel the historic highway and see all sorts of waterfalls; it's quite beautiful -- very green, ferns, waterfalls, windy pretty road. Eat lunch or dinner at Hood River and zip back to Portland.

The drive from Portland to Seattle is a bit hohum. There is a Mt. St. Helens visitors' center a few miles off the freeway that is interesting [and on a clear day, you can see the mountain]; or you can drive up to the rim if you have the time.

Seattle -- oh, my -- so much to do there!

Colne
Level Contributor
182 posts
48 reviews
17 helpful votes
4. Re: SF to Seattle

We've just got back from a 4 week road trip from Seattle to LA with our 2 kids (8 & 12), we planned our stops with 3/4 hours in the car in between & they managed fine.

We stayed in he Travelodge (3 nights) in Seattle, basic & dated but spotless & they have a pool. 5 minutes walk from the EMP Museum (excellent), the Space Needle (great views), Chihuly Glass and Gardens (absolutely stunning exhibits), a God walk down to Pike Place Market (get there early) & the big wheel down by the harbour (amazing views of a different side of the city).

We then travelled on the 97 towards Yakina (we chose this route as it swung us round Mt.Rainier, some fabulous stop offs for photos & paddling along the White River, WA) & 82 which lead us to the Dalles where we stayed at the Fairfield Inn & Suites (2 nights), very new, absolutely pristine, 2 minute walk to Cousins restaurant & you're right on the Historic Highway for a drive to the Columbia Gorge Discovery Centre & further on to Multnomah Falls (if you should find a blue Lake Louise hat at the top, it's ours...we only discovered it was missing once we'd got down & there was no way we were walking back up again!). We did the Wahkeena Falls trail, beautiful & a good workout!

We then drove back along the 84 but came off on the 35 to drive round Mt.Hood, through Salem & out to Newport. We stayed in the Holiday Inn Express (2 nights) & visited the Devil's Punchbowl & then spent the afternoon on the beach next door. Also worth a visit to the Hatfield Marine Science Centre & the historic bayfront.......you'll hear the seals before you see them.

Down the 101 then to the Gold Beach Resort (2 nights) & we had a great time doing the 104 mile trip with Jerry's Rogue Jet up the Rogue River (you will get wet!) & rolling down the sand in the Oregon Dunes National Recreation Area.

Carrying along the 101 to Eureka, into Humboldt State Park & Avenue of Giants & we stayed in Miranda. Those Redwood Groves are absolutely awesome, the trails are a great way to explore those huge trees.

On then for a 1 night stay in the Lodge at Blue Lakes (lake swimming, kayaking) before moving down to SF.

We've had an awesome adventure & we'd do it all again tomorrow!

Edited: 17 September 2016, 19:35
Colne
Level Contributor
182 posts
48 reviews
17 helpful votes
5. Re: SF to Seattle

ps. Alcatraz was really, really interesting & I'd recommend it (listen to the Ranger lead talks if there is one, always a great way to learn that little bit more) but make sure you book tickets well in advance.....& I mean weeks, they sell out. Also, Basically Free Bike Rentals for a cycle trip across the bridge.

Troutdale, Oregon
Destination Expert
for Hood River, Troutdale, Cascade Locks, The Dalles, Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
12,462 posts
146 reviews
79 helpful votes
6. Re: SF to Seattle

Good information Linzi B. Thanks so much for sharing.

MrsO

Colne
Level Contributor
182 posts
48 reviews
17 helpful votes
7. Re: SF to Seattle

We found the information on forums such as this absolutely invaluable when planning our trip so I hope some of our experiences may help others.

Troutdale, Oregon
Destination Expert
for Hood River, Troutdale, Cascade Locks, The Dalles, Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
12,462 posts
146 reviews
79 helpful votes
8. Re: SF to Seattle

You thought right. They indeed help other visitors to our area.. As do reviews.

M

Solihull, United...
Level Contributor
53 posts
9. Re: SF to Seattle

Thanks everyone. Sorry for long delay in response

Still fretting about distances, wish I has into sf booked and return from Seattle!!

Wondering whether we should sort of do a north California SF loop sort of thing but just not sure! Live the sound of Linzi trip though, just wondering if we have time to do this from SF and back again in 18 nights.

Colne
Level Contributor
182 posts
48 reviews
17 helpful votes
10. Re: SF to Seattle

I'd do it.

Ok, the way we plan our trips (we've done the one outlined above & a 4 week circular route from Calgary, Jasper, Vancouver & then back along the border to Calgary again in an RV a couple of years back so we find maps & TripAdvisor great), get Google maps open, get to the directions bit, first stop Seattle (3/4 nights here?), down to the Dalles (add a stop, Yakima otherwise maps will send you the interstate way)....that's about 4 hours driving. Took us a bit longer cos we kept stopping to paddle in the White River & take pictures.

1/2 nights in the Dalles....then, you need to find a town somewhere in between the Dalles & Lake Tahoe, too long a drive straight there.

Across to SF (we stayed 4 nights), up to Miranda so you get the Avenue of Giants, Gold Beach, Newport & back to Seattle.

Play around with the maps, we tried to get it so there was *about* 4 hours driving in between each place & our 2 coped just fine. Stopping off for lunch & comfort breaks breaks up the drive.

Like I said, 18 nights, circular trip in that kinda route....we'd definitely do it.