Welcome to Bellingham, a small city with big personality! Located in the northwestern corner of Washington state, Bellingham is known for its stunning natural scenery, thriving arts scene, and bustling downtown area. Whether you’re looking to hike in the mountains, explore local breweries and restaurants, or relax on the beach, Bellingham has it all.
In this article, we’ll take a closer look at what makes Bellingham such a unique and special destination. From outdoor adventures to cultural experiences, there’s something here for everyone. So pack your bags and get ready to explore the best of the Pacific Northwest!
Things to Do in Bellingham
Hit the Trails
One of the biggest draws of Bellingham is its proximity to outdoor recreation. With easy access to both the mountains and the ocean, there’s no shortage of opportunities to explore the great outdoors. Here are just a few of the top hiking spots in the area:
- Whatcom Falls Park: This beautiful park offers a variety of trails for hikers of all skill levels. Don’t miss the picturesque waterfalls along the way.
- Lake Padden: With a 2.6-mile loop trail around the lake, this is a great spot for a leisurely walk or jog.
- Mount Baker: For more advanced hikers, Mount Baker offers a challenging climb with stunning views of the surrounding area.
Explore the Downtown Area
If you’re looking for a more urban experience, head downtown to explore Bellingham’s vibrant arts and culture scene. Here are a few must-visit spots:
- Mount Baker Theatre: This historic theater hosts a variety of concerts, plays, and other performances throughout the year.
- Whatcom Museum: Learn about the history and culture of the Pacific Northwest at this excellent museum.
- Village Books: This independent bookstore is a local favorite, with a wide selection of books, gifts, and more.
Get Out on the Water
Bellingham is situated right on the coast, making it an ideal destination for water-based activities. Here are a few ideas for how to get out on the water:
- Bellingham Bay: Take a stroll along the waterfront or rent a kayak to explore the bay up close.
- San Juan Islands: Hop on a ferry and explore the beautiful San Juan Islands, just a short trip from Bellingham.
- Whale watching: If you’re lucky, you might spot a pod of orcas on a whale-watching tour.
Where to Eat and Drink in Bellingham
Bellingham is home to a thriving food and drink scene, with options ranging from cozy cafes to upscale restaurants. Here are a few recommendations:
- The Bagelry: This local institution serves up delicious bagels and other breakfast treats.
- The Little Cheerful Cafe: With a cozy atmosphere and tasty brunch offerings, this cafe is a must-visit.
Breweries and Bars
- Chuckanut Brewery: This award-winning brewery is a local favorite, with a wide selection of craft beers and tasty food.
- The Copper Hog: This laid-back bar offers a rotating selection of craft beers and tasty pub fare.
- The Temple Bar: With a sophisticated atmosphere and delicious cocktails, this is a great spot for a night out.
- Black Sheep: This farm-to-table restaurant offers delicious seasonal dishes made with locally-sourced ingredients.
- Mallard Ice Cream: This artisanal ice cream shop offers unique and delicious flavors, such as lavender and honey.
- Pure Bliss Desserts: Satisfy your sweet tooth with the delicious cakes, pastries, and other treats at this bakery.
Shopping in Bellingham
Bellingham is also a great destination for shopping, with a variety of local boutiques and specialty stores. Here are a few spots to check out:
- Village Books & Paper Dreams: This independent bookstore also offers a wide selection of gifts, toys, and stationery.
- Fairhaven Toy Garden: A fun and whimsical toy store with a great selection of games, puzzles, and toys for all ages.
- Drizzle: This gourmet olive oil and vinegar shop also offers a variety of spices, sauces, and other culinary treats.
- Spruce: This chic boutique offers clothing, jewelry, and other accessories from a variety of local and international designers.
- The Greenhouse: A plant lover’s paradise, this store offers a wide selection of houseplants, succulents, and other greenery.
- The Lucky Dumpster: This vintage store offers a carefully curated selection of clothing, accessories, and home decor.
Frequently Asked Questions
- What is the best time of year to visit Bellingham?
Bellingham can be enjoyed year-round, but the summer months (June-August) are the most popular due to the warm weather and variety of outdoor activities.
- Is Bellingham a family-friendly destination?
Absolutely! Bellingham offers plenty of activities and attractions for visitors of all ages, from hiking and beachcombing to museums and parks.
- What is the closest airport to Bellingham?
Bellingham International Airport (BLI) is the closest airport to the city, with flights from a variety of destinations.
- Are there any pet-friendly activities in Bellingham?
Yes, Bellingham is a very pet-friendly city, with plenty of parks, beaches, and trails that allow dogs. Many restaurants and shops also welcome furry friends.
Bellingham may be a small city, but it packs a big punch when it comes to natural beauty, cultural experiences, and delicious food and drink. Whether you’re looking for adventure or relaxation, Bellingham is a destination that shouldn’t be missed. So what are you waiting for? Come explore the best of the Pacific Northwest in Bellingham!