Coast-to-Coast Trip Part 6: Spokane, WA and Vancouver, BC (Last One!)

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Hi Everyone,

This is my last recap of our trip (finally), then back to my blog’s regular posting. 🙂

For our next and last stops…

Orlando, FL  {recap here}
Los Angeles, CA {recap here}
Boulder & Las Vegas, NV (& a little bit of Arizona :P ) {recap here
Jackson Hole, WY —> BREATHTAKING!!! {recap here}
Seattle, WA {recap here}
> Spokane, WA
> Vancouver, BC (Canada)

Spokane, WA & Vancouver, BC

From Seattle, hubby and I took a roadtrip to Spokane (pronounced as “spo-CAN,” but often mispronounced as “spo-CAIN.”) to see what this other big city in Washington has to offer.

As we drove out from Seattle to Spokane, I noticed the sky was starting to clear up from no visibility, fog, and low lying clouds to clear skies. It was a whole new place once we got over the mountains. It was cool to see that transition.

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from foggy…

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…to sunny

It was nice to see sunlight (finally), which was scarce in Seattle.

The drive from Seattle to Spokane took us less than five hours. It was worth taking the trip and see some of the attractions along the way. We made a stop over with a beautiful view and a monument that was a scene of wild horses running on the top of a hill – super cool! Overall the drive was beautiful and relaxing.

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We made it to Spokane, with no problems. It’s a very pretty little city. While Seattle was chilly, Spokane had sunny, blue skies, and 70-degree day. 🙂

We pulled into Spokane around noon and checked-in at Oxford Suites which was just in downtown Spokane. We ate our check-in chocolates, enjoyed our very large, posh room, and got some rest.

After our rest, we headed out for a late lunch and explored the city.

We ate at this seafood restaurant called Anthony’s at Spokane Falls. We chose this place because of the view of Spokane Falls outside. For me, this is “THE” date spot in Spokane. Combine a beautiful view, nice ambiance, and reasonably priced seafood, and you have a winner.

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After our late lunch, we walked around and explore downtown Spokane.

Spokane seems like a blast from Seattle’s past, but in a good way. Not retro, but progressive, urban, and close to nature. My favorite part of their downtown is the Spokane River Centennial Trail. You’ll see a lot of runners, bikers, walkers, and in-line skaters along this riverside trail. I was kind of jealous of the scenery runners get here. Beautiful!

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Their downtown has gondolas which I thought was cool.
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Then, walking around Riverfront Park, we saw this giant Radio Flyer.

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How cool is that!? Well, the handle is a slide.  I would rather it be a real handle (and free wheels), so I could drag the thing home around the park. But that’s probably not going to happen. 🙂

I like that Spokane has the Riverfront Park where there are many things to do and see and take photos of.

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As I’ve mentioned, Spokane is a city close to nature. There are many trails and parks that are just driving distance away from the city. The next day we went to Mount Spokane State Park which was about 45mins drive from downtown.

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We drove through this nice paved road that goes all the way to the top of Spokane Mountain.
The road up to the top was a curvy mountain road, which you will have to drive on carefully. The final few miles is a little hair-raising and we were glad to meet no cars coming down.

Here’s a video of the road, but this one I took on our way down from the mountain (please excuse our craziness, LOL!).

The view from the top didn’t dissapoint. It was truly lovely.

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If only I had known that there were tables and great views, I would have packed a lunch and had a nice picnic up there.

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If you look closely at the pic above, there were little white pipes that you have to look through which is directed at certain landmarks. I thought that was clever.  One of the pipes allows a view of Canada (Alberta) which was pretty cool.

It was hot in Spokane but the temperatures at the top of the mountain was 15 to 20 degrees cooler. NICE!

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Mount Spokane is a great, natural place worth seeing!

After venturing out in the park, we were back in Downtown Spokane and roamed around some more.

I found this nice sculpture of runners in downtown park. It is called “The Joy of Running Together”. It depicts runners of all kinds and it celebrates Spokane’s tradition of Bloomsday, the largest timed road running race in the world. Awesome! I am convinced that this city is perfect for runners, bikers, and outdoor enthusiasts.

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Found their specialty running store!

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For dinner, we ate at Melting Pot.

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Ja on the RUN

It’s our first time eating at a Melting Pot restaurant. They had good service. We had the four course meal which was a good option for me and my husband. We started with a cheese fondue. It came with bread, apples and veggies for dipping. The next course was a salad which was tasty. Next was the main course. We had a choice of meats with a broth of special seasoned mixes. Then came the chocolate fondue for dessert, served with sweets and strawberries. We had the caramel chocolate which was okay. The price was a little too high for the quality but it was a good decent meal. Nothing that really stood out. It was just something new and different to try for us but not really something that we rave going back again.

The next day was our road trip to Canada! Yay!

Before leaving Spokane, we made a quick stopover at Method to get some snacks and drinks for our road trip. 🙂

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They offer fruit-vegetable blend smoothies, healthy snacks like chia pudding, soups, and salads.

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I got the “Natural” juice blend smoothie: cucumber, pear, spinach, pineapple, romaine, coconut water, agave syrup; while hubby got the “Integral” juice blend smoothie: coconut water, agave syrup, strawberry, blueberry, raspberry. We also got some chia pudding to-go. 🙂

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I was so happy to find this organic juice bar before we headed out for our roadtrip.

We were then off to Vancouver! Yay!

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We arrived in Vancouver in time for dinner. We met up with our friends from med school and they took us to a nice dinner at Bubble World. This place is amazing. They have awesome food and bubble teas!!! They sure knew where to take my husband and me. We really enjoyed the food and of course their company. It was fun catching up with them and reminisce on our good ol’ med school days. 🙂

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That night we headed over and stayed at another friend’s (a friend from college) house. They have the most adorable kids. 🙂 The following morning they took us for a road trip to Whistler. The drive was amazing. I planned to snooze on the way since I was still exhausted from our trip from Spokane but it didn’t happen. The views were amazing!

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We made it! Hello Whistler!

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It was my first time to visit Whistler but I heard a lot about this place from friends and family. They say this place is great during the winter. But being here in the Summer was nice too – green mountain peaks are topped with a blush of snow here and there and the village is full of mountain bikers. Whistler has miles of biking trails through the nearby woodlands, mountains, and around lakes. There are other summer activities that are available too, like white water rafting, bungee jumping, ATV rentals, and hiking in and around the area.

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my friend and her adorable kid.

We rode the gondola up the Whistler Mountain.

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mountain bikers

Once we reached the top, we saw the famous Olympic rings!

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And more pictures!

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Of course we jumped in the Olympic Luge. 🙂

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At the top of Whistler, we boarded a Peak to Peak Gondola to head to Blackcomb Mountain.  The Peak to Peak Gondola is just amazing.  It’s smooth, and you feel like you’re flying across the valley in between the 2 peaks.  It takes about 10 minutes to cross, and if you feel like waiting a few extra minutes to board, you can ride across on one of the glass bottomed gondolas for an even better view, which we did! 🙂

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Ja on the RUN

Inukshuk

There were actually people still skiing and snowboarding there. Yup, in the middle of summer. Apparently, they have a year round skiing on the glacier which really boggled my mind. 🙂

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After taking a couple of touristy shots, we took the ski lift chairs to head back down. It was a little weird taking those lift chairs going down.

I’m glad I got a chance to see this place in a different perspective and we will definitely plan on going back in the Winter for a snowboarding trip! 🙂

All in all, it was an amazing trip! Vancouver is a beautiful city! If only my husband and I can live there! It’s one of those beautiful cities I’ve ever been! 🙂

Anyone else been to Vancouver or Whistler?  If so what did you end up doing while you were there?  I am looking for more ideas if/when I go back. 

So, finally, I have almost cleared this blog of all backlog; almost a thousand pictures and stories of every place we have visited in North America. 23 days, 7 states , 3 SD cards, 3 rented cars, 5 airplane rides, different kinds of weather, countless miles of driving, and the people we met, all worth the time and money (’cause when we got home, we were so broke, LOL!).

It was definitely a wonderful and memorable experience for me and my husband. I learned a lot from this month-long trip and I felt so blessed in so many ways (Thank You!). We don’t know when the next time we would ever be able to do this kind of adventure again but, I’m telling you, we’re hooked! 🙂

My husband and I get magnets and Christmas ornaments as souvenirs from the places we’ve been to together, and here’s what we’ve accumulated so far.

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I can’t wait to hang these on our Christmas tree! 🙂

Some people were asking what my top favorite places from this trip where.

1.) Jackson Hole, WY – Amazing! (recap here)
2.) Hoover Dam – WOW! (recap here)
3.) Vancouver, BC – I want to live here! 🙂

XoXo,

Ja

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14 thoughts on “Coast-to-Coast Trip Part 6: Spokane, WA and Vancouver, BC (Last One!)

  1. Pingback: Thanksgiving Weekend 2013! | Ja on the RUN

  2. Brittany

    I just ADORE Washington sososo much! I’ve been to Spokane, but never like this..NOW I want to go!! As for the Melting Pot, I definitely think you are more paying for the experience (which was cool one time) more than the meal!

    Reply
  3. Abby

    Love all the fun stuff you can see on road trips! That red wagon has got to be one of the best gems! Magnets and Christmas ornaments are great ideas for little souvenirs, too.

    Reply
  4. GiGi Eats Celebrities

    NEVER EVER been to WA or BC!!! I have always wanted to go to BC, especially when I was competitively snowboarding!!! But would you look at that, looks like I don’t need to go anymore thanks to all your amazing photos!!! 🙂

    Reply
    1. Ja @Ja on the RUN Post author

      Oh you still need to go and see the beauty for yourself. 🙂 It’s really pretty. I love Whistler! And I will definitely go back again for a snowboarding trip! 🙂 Love it there! 🙂

      Reply
  5. slowgirlfastdog

    Glad you enjoyed Spokane! It’s nice to hear a visitor’s perspective! Mt. Spokane is where I did my 10k trail run (Wild Moose Chase) in Sept. It was amazing but cold and foggy and drizzly….brrrr. And you’re right, runners do have some pretty amazing views to enjoy! That’s probably why the city’s slogan is “Near nature. Near perfect.” 🙂

    Reply

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