1. Floating Bridges

    Lake Washington’s famous floating bridges, Interstate 90 and State Route 520, connect Seattle with Bellevue and the Eastside. Both highways resemble ordinary bridges except for the middle portions, which rest on the water’s surface above air-filled pontoons that support tons of traffic and concrete. Occasional windstorms push waves of water onto the road, creating back-ups for commuters.

    Floating bridges
  2. Kirkland

    Once a small rural town across Lake Washington, Kirkland has grown into a sprawling suburb with resident Microsoft executives and managers giving it a reputation for expensive real estate. It’s also known for a charming waterfront that offers great shopping and dining and fantastic beaches that provide views of Seattle and the Olympic Mountains.

  3. Old Bellevue

    Bellevue sometimes gets a bad rap from more city-slicked Seattleites. It’s a classic suburb, as well as one of the state’s largest cities. But there is an area that speaks of its former life as a small town. Head to Old Bellevue and its restored Main Street for the antidote to freeway interchanges and big box stores, especially if you like buying antiques.

  4. Eastside Wineries

    Tip your glass of red wine during a visit to Chateau Ste. Michelle, Washington state’s oldest winery. Their 87 acre wooded estate in Woodinville, 15-miles (24-km) north of Seattle, hosts tours and well attended summer concerts. It’s one of several outfits taking advantage of a climate that favors excellent grape varieties. Other producers of good quality wine include Columbia Crest, DeLille Cellars, and family owned and operated Facelli Winery.

    Chateau Ste. Michelle

    • 14111 NE 145th St, Woodinville

    A wine cellar
  5. The Gates Estate

    So many people wonder how and where one of the world’s richest men lives. Microsoft’s founder, Bill Gates, built his estate on Lake Washington’s eastern shore installing the latest technological advancements in modern living – high-end security systems, customized touch and voice controls, and luxurious entertainment facilities. The estate is not open to the public, naturally, but it’s visible from the water and touring boats occasionally cruise within sight from a considerable distance.

    • 1835 73rd Ave NE, Medina

  6. Crossroads Shopping Center

    This bustling shopping center is popular with Microsoft employees and vibrant ethnic groups, sometimes in traditional regalia. Free jazz, folk, and world music concerts on a professional stage and public art installations help make this a gathering place with personality.

    • 15600 NE 8th St

    • 425 644 1111

  7. Mercer Slough Nature Park

    This 300 acre park on the grounds of the largest remaining wetland on Lake Washington has a 5-mile (8-km) network of trails and esplanades. Bird-watchers flock to the Slough to view 100 species; other wildlife includes coyote, beaver, and muskrat. Activities comprise canoeing and kayaking, guided nature walks, and u-pick blueberries during the summer season.

    • 2102 Bellevue Way SE, Bellevue

  8. Marymoor Park

    The county’s most popular park, located in Redmond, maintains soccer and baseball fields, a velodrome, and an off-leash dog-training field. Dogs are free to roam and splash in water, a practice seriously discouraged or outlawed everywhere else. Park trails connect with the Sam­mamish River Trail, a bike route that leads to popular wineries in Woodinville.

    • 6046 W Lake Sammamish Pkwy NE, Redmond

  9. Luther Burbank Park

    Mercer Island is a small affluent community off Interstate 90 near Lake Washington’s eastern shore. The lovely waterfront park, on the northeastern tip of the island, offers boaters and visitors notable attractions such as tennis courts, a playground, and trails that lead to a swimming area and fishing dock. On summer Sunday afternoons, the park hosts free concerts in its amphitheater.

    • 2040 84th Ave SE, Mercer Island

  10. Dinner Train

    An engaging way to travel up the lake to the Washington State wineries between Renton and Woodinville is on this vintage train that presents dinner and shows. The cuisine and scenery combine for a great but brief taste of the golden age of rail travel. The Spirit of Washington departs from Renton.

    Spirit of Washington

    • 625 S 4th St (Renton)

    • 425 227 7245

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