Seattle is rainier than San Francisco

Seattle

Sea-Tac Airport is 13 miles south of the city and can be reached via the I-5. Gray Line's Airport Express and Shuttle Express offer affordable transfers to major downtown Seattle hotels. Taxis are also an option, but not so much for the smaller budget. If you prefer to drive yourself, there are numerous car rental companies at the airport.

The metro transit buses run throughout the city, with most lines in the city center going on 4th Avenue or through the bus tunnel, which has five entrances into the city center. In the immediate city center, all bus rides between 6th Avenue and Waterfront and between Jackson Street in Pioneer Square and Battery Street are free from 6 a.m. to 7 a.m. It should be noted that trips to the Seattle Center are always chargeable.

Seattle Trolley Tours are great for exploring downtown. Passengers can get on and off at will, and tickets are valid for the whole day. The stops recognizable by the yellow notice boards include Space Needle, Pike Place, Waterfront, Pioneer Square, International District, Kingdome and Seattle Art Museum. The cars leave every 30 minutes.

If you drive into Seattle, you will likely get into the city on either I-5 or I-90. It is wise to hear the traffic news before venturing onto the freeways, as Seattle is likely second only to Los Angeles when it comes to traffic chaos. Also, downtown Seattle has numerous one-way streets and parking can be a nightmare.

The Washington State ferries are particularly recommended for excursions into the wonderful scenic surroundings. The view of the city from Puget Sound is first class and definitely makes the drive worthwhile on a sunny summer day, even if you don't have a specific destination. The ferries leave from the piers on the banks of the Alaskan Way.