Connie Blumenthal

The Most Seasoned Real Estate Connoisseur in Greater Seattle and Mercer Island Luxury Real Estate Markets

Romantic Summer Getaways!

What makes a perfect, romantic escape? Whether it's taking a scenic ride on Chuckanut Drive, a day trip to Washington's wine country, or a weekend in Leavenworth, we've spotlighted some of the best summer getaways that the Pacific Northwest has to offer. Now all you need to do is pack your bags and head to the destination that best suits your needs! Explore the possibilities at Chuckanut Drive

For a beautiful and slow-paced alternative to Interstate 5 that connects Bellingham to Skagit Valley, there is no better choice than to take Chuckanut Drive. This scenic route takes you through gorgeous farmlands & tulip fields, in and out of the towns Allen & Bow, with some of the area's best Restaurants, Bed & Breakfasts and Antique & Art Galleries. You can take a beautiful side trip through the historic town of Edison, to Bay View and Samish Island which both overlook Samish Bay and some of Washington's prime shellfish beds. The Bay View State Park also overlooks Padilla Bay and offers picnic tables, a playground and camping. The Drive continues along the rock shoulder of the Chuckanut Mountains where it overlooks the San Juan Islands from any of the viewpoints along the way. There are various locations to take pictures or to simply park your car and stretch your legs out. Try one of the many hikes, either to the lakes on Chuckanut & Blanchard Mountains or to the beaches at Larrabee State Park or Teddy Bear Cove. Larrabee Park is located on Samish Bay and offers eight miles of scenic hiking trails, campsites, amphitheater and boat launch. Chuckanut Drive continues all the way to the 1880's brick town of Fairhaven, which is now a suburb of Bellingham, and eventually ends in Bellingham. You can also choose to try the trip in reverse! 

Sun Mountain Lodge

Sun Mountain Lodge is a year-round destination resort located in Washington State's beautiful Methow Valley, which offers the outdoor enthusiast a unique playground and luxurious lodging. There are over 100 miles of trails for hiking, extensive mountain biking, and horseback riding that laces the countryside. The summer provides peak experiences and activities at Sun Mountain including whitewater rafting with Blue Sky Outfitters, fly fishing with North Cascade Flyfishing, or golfing nearby at Bear Creek, Alta Lake, Bear Mountain, or Desert Canyon Golf Courses. You can also canoe, kayak, or paddle on Patterson Lake. Sun Mountain Lodge has achieved international acclaim with awards for the hotel, guestrooms, cuisine and wine list. You can choose to watch the stars glimmer over the Cascade Mountains as you dine on gourmet delicacies, sip your favorite drink and take in the view from the Wolf Creek Bar & Grill, simply savor the tranquility of the sunset from your private balcony, or luxuriate in a bubbling jetted tub with a panoramic view of Mt. Robinson from your spacious suite. Set on 3,000 acres, Sun Mountain's unique combination of privacy, tranquility and serenity balanced by the highest standard of excellence in service and guest amenities makes this an unmatched experienced for everyone.

 

Leavenworth, WA

Herzlich Willkommen! Leavenworth is a wonderful destination throughout the year but the sunshine, warmth, and blue skies of the summer is what this Alpine Bavarian village is famous for. Go bask in the Bavarian culture and cuisine, experience a whitewater adventure, and devour nature with over 700 miles of hiking, biking, and horseback riding trails! Whether you want to cycle, paddleboard, swim, or ride on ATVs and wagons, Leavenworth is bound to provide the summertime activity that you prefer. Luxuriate in a world-class spa experience at Solstice Spa & Suites, reside at one of the many lodging areas, or shop at any of the retail locations. Unearth imported treasures, smell handcrafted soaps & candles, sip on the budding wine, and let the specialty chocolates, cheeses, meats and sweets dance around in your tongue. After you have finished running your fingers across boutique clothing, fine china and jewelry, you can dine at one of the wide variety of restaurants that will please every palate. For those who love music, theatre, and art, Leavenworth is the perfect village. "Art in the Park" is Leavenworth's longest running attraction, running from May-October, where you can stroll through the galleries and juried art show. Leavenworth is simply a place that will suit everyones' needs!

 

Day trips to Washington's Wine Country

Washington State is the 2nd largest premium wine producer in the United States with 740+ wineries and 350+ grape growers but the celebrated wine growing region is in Eastern Washington. You can travel through the Cascades and tour the wine country, where 99 percent of Washington State's wine grapes are grown. This region includes the Yakima Valley, Walla Walla Valley, Columbia Valley, Red Mountain and the new appellations of the Columbia Gorge, Horse Heaven Hills, Rattlesnake Hills, Wahluke Slope, Snipes Mountain, and Lake Chelan.

Escape to the Yakima Valley in Central Washington to find experience one of the world's top agricultural growing regions boasting delicious wine and large varieties of fresh produce. The Yakima Valley is the gateway to Washington State wine country with a river cutting through the vast desert expanse and bringing life to this fertile valley. The Yakima River literally turns water into wine, with this arid valley home to over one-third of the state's vineyards. Winery hopping in the Yakima Valley is an unforgettable journey of delightful discovery for those seeking the good life and great wines. Take in the relaxing pace of the countryside & the charm of revitalized downtowns, explore the various vineyards with a winemaker, then laugh and enjoy a long leisurely lunch. This sun-soaked WA wine region is located along the same latitude as the renowned wine-producing regions of France and is home to magnificent vineyards that feature trellises laden with rich grape varietals. You can visit local vintners and savor their prized harvests & collect their handcrafted, award-winning wines. Access to this region couldn't be any easier with a quick drive from Seattle, Portland, and Spokane metropolitan areas.

Walla Walla wine region sits in a unique cradle of Northwest history where many of the vineyards are still owned by the pioneering families who started them. Today it is often compared to Napa Valley in the 1970s--an area where winemakers from across the country and from around the world are moving to start wineries. The Walla Walla Valley is home to over one hundred wineries--representing one in every seven in Washington. Wineries and tasting rooms are distributed across five main areas, each of which has a distinctly different feel. The 'Vintage Loop' in the west of town includes two of the valley's oldest wineries, L'Ecole No. 41 (est. 1983) and Woodward Canyon (est. 1981). The tasting rooms in this area range from a small house, to a historic school house, to a large and spacious facility complete with a three-hole golf course and summer concerts. Downtown tends to include small, dedicated tasting rooms with the winery's production facilities located elsewhere. The airport area has wineries that are mostly small, old converted military buildings that function both as tasting rooms and production centers. East and South has wineries that range from being modest to palatial, with many of them notable for their adjacent vineyards and picturesque views of the Blue Mountains.

The Columbia Valley is located in the heart of Washington Wine Country with over 100 wineries within 60 miles. This is a region where each winery offers its own style of world-class wines while maintaining a level of excellence that only comes from grapes grown in the scenic Columbia Valley vineyards. The arid soil, warm days, and cool nights of this region provide the perfect climate for growing world-class wine grapes. Whether you prefer visiting a small boutique winery or one of the largest wineries in Washington, you are bound to find it in the Tri-Cities area.

Oregon Coast

The Oregon Coast is Oregon's number one tourist destination where people come from all over to bask in the scenic beauty, moderate temperature, sandy beaches, historical sites, and wide variety of recreational activities. Getting to places along the Oregon Coast is easy thanks to Highway 101, which stretches the entire coast. Within the coastline of 363 miles, you can pass through quaint tourist towns such as Cannon Beach, large cities like Coos Bay and smaller communities like Manzanita. There is public access to all of the beaches along the coast so feel free to stop and sink your toes in the sand anywhere along your route--you can even drive right out onto the beach in some areas. Nature and the coast itself are some of the best aspects about the Oregon Coast but you can also enjoy man-made attractions such as lighthouses and shipwrecks. Summers in Oregon offer plenty of ways to enjoy the season because it brings to life the brisk lakes & swimming holes, long sultry evenings, sidewalk cafes. You can also enjoy the beauty of rushing waterfalls, or hike on one of the coast's many trails.

Cannon beach is a popular destination, with a small town charm, located approximately 80 miles west of Portland and 25 miles south of Astoria. This city is surrounded by the rugged natural beauty of forests, ocean beaches, and rivers. It is a picturesque resort area playing host to an estimated 750,000+ visitors annually. Nine miles of beach provide a perfect setting for strolling along the seaside, watching diverse wildlife in its natural habitat and has Haystack Rock and Needles marking its shoreline. Haystack Rock is 235 feet tall and is claimed to be the third largest monolith that can be reached by land. During your stay, there are many options for accommodation including The Ocean Lodge and Surfsand Resort located right on the water with great views of the beach.

Carved and shaped by powerful natural forces, Depoe Bay is the site of the world's smallest navigable harbor. There are waves running beneath lava beds creating spouting geysers up to 60 feet into the air and sea caves that line the scenic rocky shoreline. This city is teeming with marine life and the huge sea walls running the length of the downtown area allows visitors to shop or dine with constant view of the ocean. The rugged rocky coastline, snug harbor, and easy access via Highway 101 makes Depoe Bay one of the most popular destinations along the Oregon Coast. You can watch whales frolic and feed in the water, explore tide pools and feel the intense power of the surf. Depoe Bay has a resident pod of grey whales which makes its home here 10 months out of the year therefore it is a popular area where visitors come to whale watch from shore observation spots or closer up from a charter. There are casual cafes and fine restaurants featuring every type of cuisine but most of the bountiful fresh sea-food are served as the centerpiece. You can choose from ocean front & plush resort hotels, B&B's, and timeshare condos with spectacular views.

Pacific City is located between Tillamook and Lincoln City on the southern end of the beautiful "3 Capes Scenic Drive". This is a great location if you appreciate the finer, quieter things in life and are in need of a special getaway for a romantic weekend. Pacific City is known for being a quaint fishing village and vacation destination located in a very unique and special geographical and geological area. There are multiple lakes, a beautiful ocean shoreline, a spectacular cape, a pristine beach, a unique sand spit, and one of the most fascinating geological formations along the west coast. You will never found yourself bored in Pacific Beach because there is always something to do for everyone!

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