Winter on the Town

Shari Sung


No matter if you’re a food lover, a nature explorer or a shopaholic, you may find yourself impressed by what the area offers for winter break.

Set Sail on a Holiday Sea Trip

Escape the town and enjoy a special holiday on the beach. The festive cruise, the “San Juan Clipper, will take you to Langley on Whidbey Island from downtown Seattle.Once in Langley, you’ll have five hours to explore the town and experience its festive charm. Maybe even pick up little gifts at Langley’s renowned gift shops, such as Music for the Eyes and Purple Moon.

A portion of all proceeds for the day trip will support regional nonprofit partners such as Treehouse, Mary’s Place and SR3.

Price: $55 per person

Duration: About nine hours

Fulfill Your Chocolate Craving With a Tour

Wonder where your chocolate comes from? Join the factory tour held by Theo Chocolate. The company has dedicated itself to making chocolate from only organic cocoa beans in the U.S. and promote fair trade practices.

You’ll learn how this particular chocolate is made and the environmental issues related to the cocoa industry during this tour. The first half hour of the tour is seated, and the second part of the tour is spent in factory observation room.

Price: $10 per person (chocolate sampling included)

Duration: About an hour

Take Time to Check Out the Ballet

What’s holiday without watching the “The Nutcracker”? This year, the Pacific Northwest Ballet School has joined up with the Seattle Times Fund for the Needy, with a portion of the proceeds from the show being given to the fund.

Price: Varies, check the website:

Time: The show will continue through Nov. 23 to Dec. 28.

Catch a Ride on The Argosy Christmas Cruise

Among all of the ships showcased in The Argosy Cruises Christmas Ship Festival, “The Spirit of Seattle,” is one of the most famous attractions during this festival. The ship is decorated with hundreds of sparkling white lights and sails towards 65 different Puget Sound waterfront communities.

Price: Varies depending on the experience you’re looking for. Check for more information on different ticket rates.

Duration: 6:30 to 8:35 PM

Part of the festival proceeds will be donated to the Seattle Times Fund for the Needy.

Learn About a Cup of Joe

Seattle is known to have some of the best coffee in the world. However, you might not be familiar with the procedure for coffee roasting.

The Coffee Crawl hosted by the Seattle By Foot Tour will take its participants to four local coffee shops and roasters and introduce each cafe’s unique philosophy, history and impact on the Seattle coffee scene to the visitors.

For those who are caffeine-opposed, they also offer decaf coffee and hot chocolate.

Price: $35 per person (with tax), with coffee tasting included

Duration: 2-2.5 hours

Roll a Strike or Roll on Skates

If you’re not a fan of the cold temperature in the ice skating arena, try roller-skating. Bowl & Skate, located in Lynnwood, is famous for their skating sessions and their bowling-while-skating events.

If you are over 21, you might want to try the Roll Bar, which is only available only on Seahawk game days. You could also book a party or event through Bowl and Skate.

Bring Family and Friends to Winter Wonderland

Seattle will be having its own winter wonderland. The annual Winterfest in the Seattle Center has a number of family friendly events ranging from riding the Winter Train, live performances and ice sculpting.

Time: Now through Jan. 6, it offers five weeks of affordable activities for those in search of the holiday spirit. Some are free, some are not.

Take a Trip to Leavenworth

During the holiday season, the Bavarian town of Leavenworth located two hours away from SCC transforms into a twinkly holiday village of lights. Try some roasted chestnuts and hot spiced wine or cider to drive away the cold winter.

You can best enjoy the Leavenworth Christmas Lighting festival with holiday music and performances on the street.

If you don’t have a car, you could also go there by train or bus! The cost for train tickets ranges from $25 to $60 and the tickets for the bus that leaves from Seattle to Leavenworth costs about $40.

Price: The festival itself is free to attend

Time: Friday through Sunday, Nov. 30 to Dec. 16.