7 Reasons to Drive to Bellingham Right Now

By Leslie Kelly  |  July 2, 2014
Credit: Leslie Kelly

Can you say summer road trip? The super-chill college town of Bellingham, 90 minutes north of Seattle, is the perfect place to stop and fuel up on the way up to Vancouver, B.C., or just to hang out for a day or two. Here are seven delicious ways to spend your time.

  • Credit: Leslie Kelly

    Massive Breakfasts at Homeskillet

    This crazy popular, kitsch-filled diner — check out the black velvet clown painting in the restroom — is in the process of expanding to meet the ever-growing demand for its exceptional preparations of comfort-food faves. Try one of the signature breakfast skillets, like the huevos rancheros, which get a kick from housemade hot sauces.

  • Excellent Espresso at Black Drop

    This Downtown coffeehouse makes the most of locally roasted beans from Maniac Coffee Roasting (the shop's former owners) for drinks that are a blast of smooth, caffeinated goodness. While we prefer a straight-up double shot, the signature Fat Elvis, a peanut butter-banana mocha, sounds like a whole lot of fun.

  • Steamers and a Sampler at Boundary Bay Brewery

    This taproom and family-friendly bistro includes a huge beer garden and a menu deep in local seafood. Try a big bowl of Manila clams steamed in beer, tomatoes and caramelized onions, with Breadfarm's Parisian baguette on the side for sopping up the sauce. That tasty dish is a perfect partner for a sampler of the house beers, which range from a blonde to a dark, almost chocolaty stout. In between, we love the ESB best. 

  • Kulshan Brewing Company's Beer Garden

    We love the laid-back vibe at this friendly brewery that features live music on Wednesdays, occasional guest brewers and a rotating lineup of food trucks in the parking lot. If you're lucky, maybe you can score the baked potato loaded with pulled pork from JT's Smokin' BBQ, which is killer with the Dude Man Wheat.

  • Cool Ice Cream at Mallard

    Assam tea-flavored ice cream? Sounds crazy, but it's amazing, the tannins in the tea shining brightly in this creamy cold stuff. That's just one of the imaginative, ever-rotating mix of clever flavors you're not likely to lick elsewhere. Vanilla with black pepper's another fave. 

  • Oysters and More at Rock and Rye

    This spiffy new spot features a long list of signature cocktails, local beer on tap and shellfish from around the Puget Sound, cooked and raw. There are also plenty of meaty choices, including a Painted Hills rib-eye and pork belly carbonara. Try the $5 halibut tacos on the daily happy-hour menu, from 3-6 PM. 

  • Burgers at Fiamma

    Made with natural, Washington state beef ground in-house, these burgers are extra flavorful and super-juicy. Bison, chicken, salmon, lamb and housemade veggie patties are additional options at this casual burger joint that also serves beer. If you're a blue cheese fan, go for the signature sandwich that towers high with that strong cheese, crispy bacon, iceberg lettuce, sweet-smoky barbecue sauce and a crunchy onion ring.