There is a beautiful 3.5 mile loop hike on Whidbey Island’s west side of Coupeville, with continuous views along its entire length. Starting from Ebey’s Landing in Ebey’s Reserve National Historical Reserve, the loop first heads north along a pebble beach of Puget Sound. After a mile, a wide sandy extension of the mainland has trapped Parego’s Lagoon between steep bluffs and outer beach. After rounding the lagoon, a switchback trail meanders up the bluff to its top where wind-stunted, gnarled old trees greet you. The great views are then different and even better, looking out from a bird’s view across the beach to the waters of Puget Sound and Olympic Mountains beyond. The trail goes back south along the edge of the bluff and returns to the parking lot at Ebey’s Landing. The trail can also be extended further north, where it connects into Fort Ebey State Park.

This is one of the prettier and more accessible view hikes around.

Walking beach north of Ebey's Landing in Coupeville on Whidbey Island

Hiking along Puget Sound beach north of Ebey’s Landing

Walking by Parego's Lagoon by Ebey's Reserve in Coupeville on Whidbey Island

Walking around Parego’s Lagoon

Hiking to top of bluff above Parego's Lagoon in Ebey's Reserve of Coupeville on Whidbey Island

Hiking up bluff above Parego’s Lagoon in Ebey’s Reserve

View from Ebey's Reserve above Parego's Lagoon near Ebey's Landing to fog and Olympic Mountains

Unusual bright white fog covering Puget Sound on a sunny day

Hiking to Ebey's Landing in Ebey's Reserve of Coupeville on Whidbey Island

Heading south back to Ebey’s Landing in Ebey’s Reserve

Ebey’s Landing National Historical Reserve



Las Vegas, The Land Of Over The Top Electric Bills, is unsurprisingly gaudy yet can be surprisingly fun if you’re willing to spend some cash. Some of the entertainment shows are quite spectacular in terms of scale and impressiveness, and other shows are funny, magical, or musical. There are good options for finding same day half price tickets. Wandering around to take advantage of the amusement park atmosphere and grinning Elvis impersonators can be quite fun too, with an open mindset.

Flying airplane to Las Vegas above Spring Mountains

Flying into Las Vegas above the Spring Mountains

Early morning view from Tropicana hotel room to Las Vegas Strip

Early morning view from Tropicana hotel room to Las Vegas Strip

New York New York in Las Vegas

New York New York, complete with roller coaster

Blue Man Theater for Blue Man Group in Monte Carlo of Las Vegas

Blue Man Theater in the Monte Carlo

Blue Man Group Las Vegas crowd enjoying show

Crowd really enjoying the aerial pandemonium during The Blue Man Group show

Blue Man Group Monte Carlo Las Vegas aftermath mess

Aftermath of Blue Man Group show in Blue Man Theater

Things To Do In Las Vegas
New York New York
Monte Carlo
Blue Man Group



Wanna do something fun? Wanna do something unusual? And wanna do something that is surprisingly fun and unusual for a simple concept? Go to a Seattle Room Escape Adventures production of “Trapped In A Room With A Zombie”.

You go around the backside of a slightly seedy window car tinting building to find an open door, and wander in. Twelve potential victims gather and listen to a German-accented lady scientist in a lab coat discuss the rules and tips for surviving the zombie encounter, including the back story of what you are about to experience. Then, after everyone has donned name tags (usually with fake zombie fighting names, if desired) and put away their extra stuff, the door is opened.

I won’t tell too much. Suffice it to say that you and your comrades have 60 minutes to solve multiple interrelated and progressive puzzles, all the while a zombie gets progressively closer to taking a chunk of you. Surprisingly, all personality types in our group enjoyed the experience, and it was interesting to see how all those personality types react to a fun theatrical game such as this!

Trapped In A Room With A Zombie by Seattle Room Escape Adventures

Zombie Food

Seattle Room Escape Adventures Trapped In A Room With A Zombie



Seattle’s iFly Indoor Skydiving is a 1.5 hour experience located by the Southcenter Mall in Tukwila. You get to achieve the feeling of floating through rushing air as if you were in free fall from an airplane before deploying your parachute.

It all starts with a fun and interactive instructor providing an overview, followed by a short training video. Then everything comes out of pockets, off fingers, off ears, and from anything that could potentially fall down into the huge whirling fan blades below. “Flight” gear includes a baggy flight suit, helmet, and wind-protective eye goggles. And then into the waiting bench right outside the chamber.

One by one, participants enter for two “flights”, each one to two minutes long. The experience is rather expensive on a per minute basis for the actual flight time, but it’s fun and unique, so what the heck. An instructor helps each participant get horizontal, provides arm and leg adjustments for proper floating, and gently guides the participant’s body to avoid tumbles or hitting the side walls hard. If the participant seems fairly comfortable, then he will spin the person around before sending him/her back out to the bench. On the second flight, (by paying an additional ten dollars) the fan speed will be increased and the instructor will spin with the participant up and down the full height of the wind tunnel column. Lots of laughing and high fives follow each flight. Each group session is ended with an impressive acrobatic aerial show by the instructor.

iFly Indoor Skydiving is located in the unusual, bright red, custom constructed building that is easily visible from I-405 when passing the Westfield Southcenter Mall. The building’s shape allows for air to be forced up a wind tunnel and recirculated around, achieving wind speeds up to 235 mph.

It’s a fun outing for yourself, a date, family, friends, whatever. Feel the flight!

Click here for video.

iFly Seattle Indoor Skydiving by Southcenter Mall Tukwila

Indoor skydiving at iFly

iFly Seattle Indoor Skydiving by Southcenter Mall in Tukwila

Practicing indoor skydiving body position

iFly Indoor Skydiving



The Boulder Garden Loop trail is a pretty and intriguing forest view hike that can be an outing in itself or part of a longer hike up Little Si trail and the Old Mt Si trail. The Little Si trailhead starts on the northeast side of the town of North Bend, eventually connecting to the offshoot Boulder Garden Loop trail. There are good signs throughout. Total roundtrip is about 2.5 miles, and it includes over 800 feet of elevation gain.

The moss-covered granite formations are quite magical, jutting up from the forest floor and providing great nooks and crannies for both kids and adults to explore. The trail is well maintained. It provides fun exploring of quiet geology and gentle trees.

Kids hiking Boulder Garden Loop trail near North Bend

Kids hiking Boulder Garden Loop trail

Looking at icicles along Boulder Garden Loop trail near North Bend

Looking at icicles flowing down the granite boulders

Boulder Garden Loop trail near North Bend 1

Lush green trail

Boulder Garden Loop trail near North Bend 2

Where forest and boulders meet

Boulder Garden Loop
North Bend



We again ventured to the Annual Gingerbread Village at the Seattle Sheraton in downtown Seattle. Each year, teams of architects plus chefs get together to create almost entirely edible mega gingerbread houses. There is a people’s choice competition, and all donations go to charity. It is fun to check out the new culinary visions and look for all the tiny details, visual jokes, and complexities of each entry. Remember that almost everything you see in these pictures is edible…

Downtown Seattle skyline at Annual Gingerbread Village gingerbread house contest at Sheraton Seattle

Downtown Seattle skyline, including Bertha digging tunnel below and Puget Sound activities on the other side

Tropical island on turtle at Annual Gingerbread Village gingerbread house contest at Sheraton Seattle

Santa on tropical island on the back of a mythical turtle

Santa reindeer pyramids at Annual Gingerbread Village gingerbread house contest at Sheraton Seattle

Reindeer waiting for Santa to land at the sugar cube pyramids

Rollercoaster at Annual Gingerbread Village gingerbread house contest at Sheraton Seattle


Star and spinning angels at Annual Gingerbread Village gingerbread house contest at Sheraton Seattle

Angels spinning fast around a star above

Christmas village at Annual Gingerbread Village gingerbread house contest at Sheraton Seattle

Christmas village

Annual Gingerbread Village



Each year The Fairmont Olympic Hotel in downtown Seattle converts one of its larger suites into The Teddy Bear Suite. A professional interior designer provides a new decorative theme, and the teddy bears pose for pictures and hugs throughout the holiday season. Donations go to a local charity. It’s a fun, quick side trip for those wandering around downtown Seattle in a holiday spirit.

Terry Bear Suite bed at Fairmont Olympic Hotel in Seattle

Teddy Bear Suite bed display

Terry Bear Suite bathroom at Fairmont Olympic Hotel in Seattle

Glamorous teddy bear bathroom

Terry Bear Suite bear hug at Fairmont Olympic Hotel in Seattle

Bear hug

Teddy Bear Suite
Fairmont Olympic Hotel