Seattle, United States

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Cruising to Seattle

The Emerald City

A city that is often associated with a lack of sleep thanks to the popular movie starring Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan, Seattle is the sort of place where insomnia may well be a virtue, as there's simply so much to see and do that you'd need to stay awake 24/7 to get through it all. That said, while Seattle may be one of the biggest and most diverse metropolises in the Pacific Northwest, it's also distinctly chilled out, with a laidback vibe that is unique to this area of the US.

Visually, it's a pretty impressive place, with the city being nestled between the Cascade and Olympic mountains, and punctuated by high-rise buildings such as the world-famous Space Needle. A cutting-edge business district - which is home to the likes of Microsoft, Boeing, Nintendo of America and several other iconic technology firms - is juxtaposed with a plethora of natural green spaces. Indeed, one of the things Seattle is known for is its parks, with Pioneer Square Park and the Olympic Sculpture Park being two of the best. This affinity for nature is something that reflects the character of the local residents, who are renowned for their hippy-esque values while also having a talent for business and innovation. Indeed, Seattleites are often credited for their sustainable yet progressive development model - something the rest of the world would do well to emulate.

The city is also home to a huge number of terrific museums and art galleries, with venues like Seattle Art Museum being among the most prestigious in Washington State. As the birthplace of legendary guitarist Jimi Hendrix - not to mention bands like Nirvana and other grunge artists - Seattle has a strong musical heritage, and a great way to explore this is to take a trip to the Experience Music Project.

Other sites that are worth visiting include the bustling Pike Place Market, which is the US's longest-running farmers market and also the location of the first ever Starbucks cafe.


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