The West Coast is a must-visit spot for almost any traveler. From the dramatic beauty of the Pacific Northwest to the sundrenched cool of California, there’s an extraordinary amount on offer on this side of the country. Whether you are road tripping down the Pacific Coast Highway or setting off on a cruise from Seattle or San Francisco, exploring the West Coast a little further is a must.
So if you are doing your research for a serious Pacific coast adventure, packing your bags for a two-week stay on the beach, or just looking for tips for taking your first cruise to Vancouver, here are four of the best spots on the West Coast that are worthy of your attention.
Portland’s uber-trendy, hipster reputation is well-earned, but this delightful West Coast city is so much more than that. It has one of the best dining scenes in the US, with a street food culture that is genuinely exceptional. Don’t miss Koi Fusion or Bing Mi, finished off with an iconic Voodoo Donut. Book lovers will fall in love with the eclectic vibes of Powell’s Bookshop, while outdoors folks will be over the moon with the stunning landscapes that surround the city, with Multnomah Falls a particular highlight.
America’s ‘alternative’ city, Seattle is sometimes overlooked, particularly in favor of the glitzier cities of the East and the South. But this fascinating, buzzy city is a tremendous vacation spot, bursting with culture and tremendous tourist experiences like the Space Needle and the Seattle Center. Food at Pike Place Market (including the world’s first Starbucks) is a treat, while as ever in the Pacific Northwest the scenery just outside the city is mindblowing. You’ll want to book a ride from the airport to your hotel then get to figuring out where to go first.
Death Valley, California
From temperate rainforests in the Northwest to one of the hottest, driest places on earth. Death Valley offers a complete contrast to the rainier climes of Washington and Oregon, but is a fantastic getaway nevertheless. Make sure you bring enough water and head to Badwater Basin, the lowest point in the US…but don’t dawdle, as the heat can be enough to literally melt your shoes to the tarmac!
Napa Valley, California
Finally, no set of West Coast recommendations would be complete without a shoutout for California Wine Country in the form of Napa Valley. This is the perfect place for a luxurious relaxation getaway, where there’s nothing to worry about beyond the next glass or the next meal, and everything is premium quality.