Pike Place Market, known for fresh fish that comes in daily, is a must-see in the Seattle/Tacoma area.
If there's one thing Ryan Moore loves more than anything when it comes to the Seattle/Tacoma area, it is the Emerald City's laid-back atmosphere. Maybe that is because it mirrors his personality. The Puyallup native is considered one of the most easygoing players on the PGA Tour.
"The area gets a bad rap for being a place where it rains all year long," Moore says. "We get half the rain [people say], and the weather is usually mild, so you can spend most of your time playing golf and enjoying the outdoors."
Moore lives by those words when he's home, where he is likely to be fishing when not playing the world-class public courses in the area.
Many people don't know how affordable it is to play in the area. You can get on some great municipal tracks for $40-$60. The first I'd recommend is Classic GC, in Spanaway, which is where I play and practice when I'm home. My family owns it, and we take great pride in the layout. The course is very undulating with a lot of elevated, contoured greens that require distance control with your approach shots.
Kitsap Peninsula Golf is another must-play when it comes to public courses. They have three courses that will test your game. The Olympic course at Gold Mountain GC is my favorite. It hosted the 2006 U.S. Public Links. The fairways are wide, but the course makes up for it with wooded areas that can get you in trouble.
Washington National GC is another to check out. It's the home course of the University of Washington golf teams. Giant waste bunkers and tall grass make this a course where shot placement is imperative, especially when the wind is blowing.
A couple of options in Seattle are the W Hotel and Inn at The Market. The W is pretty classy and lauded for its service. The Inn (3) is a boutique hotel in Pike Place Market. It has an impressive view of Puget Sound.
Point Defiance Park in Tacoma's perfect if you want to hike or run great trails. You can also rent kayaks and take in the scenery of Mount Rainier and the Puget Sound.
Pike Place Market is another must-see. The market is known for the fresh seafood that comes in daily. You can spend an afternoon looking at the produce and other local goods. It's also home of the original Starbucks coffee house. The Triple Door in Seattle is also a great place to go if you enjoy listening to local music. You'll hear everything from acoustic to jazz.
The Olympic Course at Gold Mountain GC (left, courtesy of Gold Mountain GC) hosted 2006 U.S. Public Links. The Inn At The Market (right, courtesy of The Inn At The Market) is a boutique hotel in Pike Place Market.