Scenes of Tacoma

by Lauren Braden on October 29, 2010

in Trip Ideas

“I’ve seen Tacoma… from the interstate.”

ice sculpture and Tacoma dome

An awesome glass sculpture installation that I think resembles a melting pile of snow sits just outside Tacoma’s famed Museum of Glass. It is titled “Fluent Steps” and is by Martin Blank

Well, it’s time to make a change.

The ceiling of the pedestrian bridge as you walk to the Tacoma Museum of Glass

Look up! The ceiling of the pedestrian bridge as you walk to the Tacoma Museum of Glass is filled with glass art pieces.

For years now, we’ve heard about how Tacoma’s downtown has been revitalized. And, it has. It’s walkable and vibrant and filled with art, as anyone who has made the trip to visit the Museum of Glass or catch a show at Pantages Theater can attest. It has tasty restaurants and boutique hotels. And if you haven’t made the trip, well, you should.

The swanky Hotel Murano in Tacoma

The swanky Hotel Murano downtown Tacoma is more than a hotel. It’s an experience in art and life.

But don’t stop at Tacoma’s downtown.

In truth, I wouldn’t mind keeping Tacoma’s secret from you. I happen to love this city, from its downtown to its many neighborhoods rich with personality and charm. One of the reasons I love Tacoma so is that it’s so unpretentious. And if it gets all crowded with tourists, well, Tacoma might get a big head! Knowing the laid-back nature of this city’s residents, though, I doubt it.

Walkers, joggers and rollerbladers enjoy a stretch of Tacoma’s two-mile long scenic waterfront path on Ruston Way.

We were recently in Tacoma for a weekend of research for our forthcoming Tacoma Trip Guide. Look for that next week. For now, though, just enjoy some scenes from one of Washington’s coolest cities.

Antique Sandwich Company

The village of Ruston, near Point Defiance Park, is an example of one of Tacoma’s many pocket neighborhoods with its own distinct personality. Grab a steaming cup of coffee with locals at the corner cafe, then hit up the street’s many antique stores.

My parents lived in Tacoma in the mid-1990s, and I got to know Tacoma’s neighborhoods during visits to their north-end house, from the Proctor District to Old Town to Sixth Ave.  I’m always relieved  on return visits to find that some of my favorite spots are still there and doing well, from The Spar to the Southern Kitchen. Tacoma’s best coffeeshops, cafes and eateries are like neighborhood anchors, and are loved and supported by locals.

The Southern Kitchen on Tacoma’s Sixth Avenue is famed for its fried chicken, fried green tomatoes, fried jalepeno hush puppies, and sweet tea! Don’t miss this place.

And then, there is the water, everywhere.

A solo kayaker takes advantage of the peaceful waters of Tacoma’s Commencement Bay.

For more on Tacoma, check out our Tacoma Travel Guide

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