Bainbridge Island makes for a great day trip from Seattle. Just a quick 45 minute ferry ride from Downtown Seattle and you are out of the hustle and bustle of the city. Bainbridge is a gorgeous island with a small town feel that you can explore with or without a car. So grab a ferry ticket, bring your camera and get ready for a great afternoon.
Getting to Bainbridge Island
We are lucky enough to have friends that live on this gorgeous island and can take us to all the best stops. Every time we go to visit, there is always something new to explore, which is why it’s a must visit destination when you come to Seattle.
To get to Bainbridge you will need to head to Pier 55 (quick 10 minute walk from Pikes Place Market). Be sure to check the ferry schedule before you head over, as they sometimes run late. In the summer the ticket lines can be pretty long, so leave yourself a little extra time. Tickets are about $9 for round trip fare.
Taking a car? Make sure to make your reservation ahead of time in the summer, otherwise you might have wait till the next ferry.
If you are hungry, there is a small cafeteria on board with local beer and Beecher’s bacon cheese tots, yum! Once you get your food, head up to the top, or back of the boat, so you can get the best views of Downtown Seattle as you are leaving. Heads up, it will be VERY windy and cold, so take a quick pic and head back inside.
Once you get your perfect selfie, settle into a seat and enjoy the views as you go past West Seattle on your left and Magnolia and Downtown on your right. As you get close to Bainbridge, this is the time to head to the front of the boat for some amazing views of Bainbridge Island as the ferry pulls in!
If you are walking onto the ferry, Downtown Bainbridge will be where the crowd goes, so just follow everyone off. Everything in Downtown Bainbridge is easily walkable, otherwise you will need to rent a bike or bring a car to go outside of downtown (there is very limited uber/lyft coverage).
Looking for some drinks? We absolutely love Bainbridge Brewing Alehouse and Fletcher Bay Winery. These are our go to’s. They have a relaxed vibe, board games, gorgeous indoor and outdoor seating, not to mention great wine and beer. If you have a car, they both have another location which we also love.
Getting hungry? Bruciato has really good neopolitian-style pizza and tiramisu. Need more food recommendations? Proper Fish, Hitchcock Deli, Streamline Diner and Blackbird Bakery are all places on our list to try next time!
If you are looking for an amazing water view, take a short walk to Doc’s Marina Grill. The view is incredible, so make sure to go early or get a reservation for outdoor seating. Stop by Pegasus Coffee House for some amazing coffee, we love their Seattle location. Harbour Public House also has an amazing view and makes for a perfect drink stop.
There are so many cute little shops and art galleries along the way, so make sure to leave yourself time to stop in. Bainbridge has so much to do, it makes for a great day trip from Seattle.
Beer, Wine, Liquor & Coffee
If you have a car or bike, we have the perfect spot for you! It has beer, wine, liquor, and coffee all in one spot! What more do you need?!?!
Our personal favorite winery on Bainbridge is Fletcher Bay Winery. We love their flight and by the glass options. Their Pirate Red is one of our favorite local red wines. Are you like me and can’t make a decision? They have a bunch of different flight options, which I personally love because I hate deciding.
Next door is Bainbridge Brewing, which also has an amazing vibe and great beer. They also have make your own flight options, so you can try multiple beers. I told you, I’m a sucker for a flight, that way I don’t have to make a decision!
Storyville Coffee is hands down my favorite coffee in Seattle. The Bainbridge location is home to their roasting studio where they roast all of their beans. They have the most to die for cinnamon roll you will ever have, it reminds us of the Kougin Amman we had in Paris.
Across the street is Bainbridge Organic Distillers. We have not been here yet, but it is a local favorite and you will find it at a lot of bars in Downtown Seattle. We can’t wait to go back and try all of their spirits!
Gazzam Lake Nature Preserve
Feeling adventurous? Go to Gazzam Lake Nature Preserve and take the Close Trail (7 miles round trip) down to the beach for some amazing scenery! This is a great spot to take your dog and have a little beach moment! The views of Close Beach are absolutely incredible and so relaxing.
Bloedel Reserve is 150 acre nature reserve of gorgeous gardens. There are 2 miles of trails through 14 different landscapes. Bloedel Reserve is a great way to spend a gorgeous afternoon. This is the one place that we haven’t had the chance to go yet, but is always recommended to us.
Other Winery & Restaurant Recommendations
One of our favorite things about Bainbridge is the wineries! They all have their own unique feel and different tasting options. Rolling Bay Winery is a great cozy winery with a nice outdoor space. Right across the street is Via Rosa 11 Italian Kitchen, which is supposed have amazing food. Looking for local gifts that make great souvenirs? Head to Bay Hay & Feed for all your shopping needs.
Bainbridge Vineyards has a really cute outdoor space and all their wine is made from their own island grown grapes and fruit, making this is super local stop. It is really nice to sip wine here while surrounded by the vineyards. This is definitely our favorite place to sit outside and sip wine!
If you can time the ferry at sunset, try to do it! On a nice night, Seattle has the most beautiful sunsets behind the mountains. It is also so pretty so see the city at night all lit up.
Once back in Seattle, if you have not had a chance to check out Pioneer Square, this is a must! It is Seattle’s oldest neighborhood with some really great restaurants and bars.
If you are driving and looking for other places to visit, we highly recommend Paulsbo, Port Orchard, and Port Gamble.