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Kayaking near the Dockside Marina in Tacoma, Washington

Washington

Tacoma, Washington: A City Full of Natural and Cultural Wonders

By: Jody Sidle Short

Bogdan Zlatkov
1 of 7
Cross country skiing in the winter in Mount Rainier National Park in Tacoma, Washington

Washington

Tacoma, Washington: A City Full of Natural and Cultural Wonders

By: Jody Sidle Short

Bogdan Zlatkov
2 of 7
Nisqually River wooden suspension bridge in Mount Rainier National Park in Tacoma, Washington

Washington

Tacoma, Washington: A City Full of Natural and Cultural Wonders

By: Jody Sidle Short

Bogdan Zlatkov
3 of 7
Chihuly Art in front of the Museum of Glass in Tacoma, Washington

Washington

Tacoma, Washington: A City Full of Natural and Cultural Wonders

By: Jody Sidle Short

Bogdan Zlatkov
4 of 7
Chihuly Glass Ceiling on the Bridge of Glass in Tacoma, Washington

Washington

Tacoma, Washington: A City Full of Natural and Cultural Wonders

By: Jody Sidle Short

Bogdan Zlatkov
5 of 7
Outdoor dining at Dukes Chowder House in Tacoma, Washington

Washington

Tacoma, Washington: A City Full of Natural and Cultural Wonders

By: Jody Sidle Short

Bogdan Zlatkov
6 of 7
Dukes Chowder House in Tacoma, Washington

Washington

Tacoma, Washington: A City Full of Natural and Cultural Wonders

By: Jody Sidle Short

Bogdan Zlatkov
7 of 7
  • States:
    Washington

Just 30 minutes from Seattle, Washington, with its thriving tech industry, you will find the urban port city of Tacoma.

It’s the perfect place to visit for anyone who thrives in the outdoors, but will also attract holiday goers looking for culture and world class arts. Fortunately for me, I fit into both categories, so I knew Tacoma was going to be a perfect spot for me to explore.

Mount Rainier Glaciers

I started my day nice and early as I knew the drive to Mount Rainier was going to take about an hour and I wanted to be there shortly after sunrise. As I approached the base of the mountain, the sight of the glaciers was breathtaking. I hiked a little way up only to be greeted by more glorious views of meadows and streams all surrounded by the enormous white-capped mountains. On that particular day, many of the visitors were there to do some snow shoeing as Mount Rainier Nation Park is considered one of the best places for winter sports. But as I take in all of the natural beauty, I can imagine how wonderful it would be to hike or fish in the summer.

Photographing the snow-capped summit of Mount Rainier in Tacoma, Washington

Photographing the snow-capped summit of Mount Rainier in Tacoma, Washington
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Bogdan Zlatkov

Glass Blowing in the Museum District

After a deliciously fresh seafood lunch at a local spot, I made my way to the museum district. My first stop is the Museum of Glass, which you can get to from downtown by crossing the Chihuly Bridge of Glass. It’s this amazing bridge that has all sorts of glass sculptures in massive glass containers that are on both sides and above you as well. I’ve never seen anything like it. The bridge also leads you to the Museum of Glass. Incredible pieces are on display and you can watch a group of artists blow glass from scratch, which was fascinating.

Admiring the Chihuly art on the Bridge of Glass in Tacoma, Washington

Admiring the Chihuly art on the Bridge of Glass in Tacoma, Washington
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Dock Street Marina on the Puget Sound

After a few hours of culture, I left the Museum of Glass and walked right across to the Dock Street Marina. The day had turned from rather chilly to about 22 degrees, and was just too perfect to pass up the chance to kayak on gorgeous Puget Sound. That said, I spent the next hour on the calm waters kayaking for the first time this year encircled by the majestic white-capped mountains – it just doesn’t get much better than that.

Playing the xylophones at the Dockside Marina in Tacoma, Washington

Playing the xylophones at the Dockside Marina in Tacoma, Washington
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Bogdan Zlatkov
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The Fab Vibe of Downtown Tacoma

With my now sun-kissed skin and feeling exhilarated after kayaking, I went back across the Chihuly Bridge to downtown Tacoma. The University of Washington was right in front of me with students hustling to and from lectures. As I continued to wander, I found that downtown Tacoma is home to loads of great art galleries, theatres, boutiques and some mouthwatering places to eat. Plus, I’m told that the Tacoma area is also home to some incredible golf courses, including the Chambers Bay Golf Course, which has been compared to the famous St. Andrews in bonnie Scotland.

My whole experience in Tacoma was beyond wonderful. The city has a vibe that made me feel totally at home and eager to explore more on my next visit to the Pacific Northwest!

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