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The Seattle Hack

Don’t stay in Seattle. Lodge in NorthCountry's Urban Basecamp, save money and explore new places to eat and cut loose.

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Have you ever thought about staying in Seattle but not paying Seattle prices? The hub of the tech industry is a nice place to visit but can be hell on your wallet if you play your cards wrong.

Some of the best things about Seattle are found a few minutes north of the Emerald City. And they can often be less expensive than the “tourist-traps.” In the Urban Basecamp region of Seattle NorthCountry, you can lodge affordably and make day trip forays into both local and international culture.

Here are your best bets.


Lynnwood is seriously the best place to eat. It’s hard to overhype this place. At first blush, the city appears to be a series of strip malls until, upon closer inspection, you discover that most of the strip malls are actually tiny enclaves of authentic international cuisine.

Expect to find (and demolish) the tastiest gyros, pho, tofu, noodle dishes, and more. You can eat your way around the world without leaving the city limits.

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Or, if you want to cook something up for yourself back in your hotel suite, find great ingredients at H-Mart, Lynnwood’s Asian foods super-grocery store.

Lynnwood is also home to Q Spa and Olympus Spa. If you’re heading out of town to do a digital detox, treat your body and soul as well with an immersive self-care experience. Enjoy pools, wraps, steam rooms and a full day of self-care

“Barcades” are what they sound like—bars plus arcades; video games for adults. Lynnwood has a few. It also has “nerd culture” in spades—comic book shops, video game stores, etc. Read more about Lynnwood’s nerd utopia.

Or, if you’re in the mood, you can plain “shop til you drop” in and around the vicinity of Lynwood’s Alderwood Mall. The mall is home to 152 stores, restaurants, plazas, and atriums. Grab a coffee to pace yourself—there’s plenty of luxury retail in this city to the north of Seattle.

Learn more about Lynnwood lodging options here.

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McMenamin's Anderson School is a maximum chillout complex for families (but mostly adults) comprised of several themed bars, a movie theater and a swimming pool all rolled into one cool getaway for adults. When in Bothell, pick up Salish Sea-fresh oysters at the PCC natural foods grocery store, and stroll through downtown Bothell for fresh baguettes, coffee, and boutique window shopping. Bothell is a short bicycle ride away from Woodinville wine country on the Sammamish River Trail.

Lodge in Bothell and take a short weekend jaunt north to Everett (dining, coffee, Funko) or west to Seattle.


Your best bets for dining are Russell’s— a seasonal restaurant located inside a refurbished old barn. It’s classy in there. Or try any one of the restaurants at McMenamin’s Anderson School. If you’re planning to stay in a hotel and want to cook for yourself, be sure to pick up ingredients and excellent beverages at Central Market in Mill Creek.

Learn more about Bothell lodging options here.

There’s no wrong way to stay in Seattle NorthCountry. The right time to visit is anytime.

Managing Editor
Richard Porter
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