Alki Beach or Alki Point is just a hop,skip, and jump down I-5, heading south and looking for the West Seattle Bridge. Easy to see as it is the only one that heads towards the water from I-5.
Often times West Seattle is overlooked by tourists coming into Seattle. However, if you are new to the area, be sure to check out Alki Beach. Does not matter what time of the year it may be, because there is always something going on at the beach.
This is one of those few beaches in Seattle that you can actually walk in sand rather than on rocky shores or gravel or perhaps some weedy grasses. You’ll also be able to take in the Seattle skyline. Check out the Space Needle while overlooking Elliott Bay.
Keep an eye open for Harbor Ave. SW which will take you around the Duwamish Head and right onto Alki Point where you’ll be greeted with the beach scene.
Chief Seattle, head of the Duwamish Indian tribe (now Native Americans) helped the first settlers through the winter of 1851. Wanting to be more “civilized” these settlers named the area New York Alki. Alki meaning “by and by” that is, this new area was going to grow to the size of New York City…by and by.
Chief Seattle had great respect for the natural environment. He wanted others to do likewise. In fact, one particularly famous quote by him goes like this:
“Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web,we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.” (spoken in the Suquamish dialect or Lushootseed language)
Spuds To You!
Now you would not be “official” until you stopped at Spuds 2666 Alki Ave. SW and devoured the best fish and chips in the area. Spuds has been an icon in the area since 1935 and is still going strong.
Ivar’s purchased Spuds a few years back, but keep in mind that he menu has remained the same. Stop in and enjoy a treat with the line up of many others which at times can go around the block.
Salty’s on Alki Beach
Salty’s is located at 1936 Harbor Ave. SW on Alki Beach. It’s another great eating place you’ll want to go to. It can be a romantic spot, or a friendly business meeting, or perhaps for couples celebrating special occasions.
On the other hand, maybe you just want something to eat. At any rate, you’ll enjoy the atmosphere but especially you’ll enjoy the great food.
Way back in 1913 the lighthouse at Alki Point 3201 Alki Ave SW was built. It is one of eight lighthouses that is open to the public on the Puget (pew-jet) Sound. Take note of the old original type instruments and the great view as you reach the top.
Log House Museum
Just off the beach about one block heading south, you run into the museum of the Log House. It’s 3003 61st Ave SW where it honors the Denny party as the first white settlers into the area and that Chief Seattle and his Tribe, kept safe through their first winter in the Seattle area.
Before leaving the area, be sure to walk the sidewalks of California Ave in the West Seattle area. It’s one of those streets that you’ll find all sorts of things in the storefronts and interesting people all along the walkways. Similar to Alaskan Way in Downtown Seattle.
The intersection of California Ave SW and Alaskan Ave SW will be the point of interest. Originally named after streetcar lines that crossed here for the DART shuttle.
Look for Easy Street Records or the Arts West Gallery. One more thing to see is the Sunday mornings (10am-2pm) West Seattle’s Farmer’s Market. And if you like that, then you’ll just HAVE to go to the Pike Place Market or perhaps walk down Alaskan Way next to the water or maybe check out the Ferries.
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Written by: Tom McDaniel