05/23/2019 Trisha Rarey Blog | Day Trips | Neighborhood Guide | Tips & Ideas

Explore the Seattle Neighborhoods Right Outside Your Vacation Rental!

UW Fountain and Mount Rainer

The Seattle neighborhoods of Ravenna and the University District are home to urban families and UW academics. A surprisingly quiet neighborhood, Ravenna is only minutes away from the shopping and dining that one would expect in a vibrant city like Seattle. It is the proud home to the popular outdoor shopping mall – University Village (U Village). Surrounding the University of Washington (UW) is the University District and is a mix of urban shopping, historic homes, great cafes, restaurants, pubs and theaters. Most of its charm can be found from simply strolling the neighborhood and taking in the beautiful architecture. “The Ave” (University Way) is a popular street with lots of indie eateries and interesting shops, as well as convenient transit to Downtown Seattle. All within a quick walk from your ideal vacation rental in these Seattle neighborhoods.



This remarkably quite neighborhood still has the Seattle charm with many restaurants and shopping to choose from. If you are looking for a great brunch, we recommend checking out the Sod House Bakery for a frothy latte and flakey Top Tart (a miniature pie folded over, topped with frosting and sprinkles). It is the perfect place to start your Seattle morning, at a mere 15-20 minute walk from several of our vacation rentals!


Your next stop must be the U-Village! This outdoor mall is home to many stores and restaurants, some that you usually see only in downtown areas like J. Crew, Anthropologie, Banana Republic and H & M, just to name a few. This is also a great place for children as well with a play area, tons of adorable shops geared towards children and even the best cupcakes in North Seattle – Trophy Cupcakes. In the summer, you can enjoy outdoor evening concerts and in the winter the stores provide umbrellas and heat lamps between stores.


U Village Outdoor Shopping Center


Ravenna Park is one of the locals favorite places to spend an afternoon because of the babbling creeks and beautiful wildlife. It has almost 50 acres of wooden land and many walking trails that connect to Cowen Park.  You can enjoy a sunny day at the outdoor grill and covered picnic area for your family outing or bring a frisbee or soccer ball to pass the time on the large grassy lawn.


Ravenna Park Picnic Area


The U-District and the University of Washington campus draws in the youth but do not be fooled, you do not need to be a student to enjoy this lively neighborhood. Cultural attractions include the collection at the Henry Art Gallery and Burke Museum. There are also a handful of classic Seattle theaters, including the Sundance Cinema and The Neptune music hall. Looking for outdoor adventures? You can rent kayaks from Agua Verde Paddle Club and float on Lake Union or Portage Bay, rent a bike and breeze down the Burke-Gilman Trail or catch a football game at Husky Stadium. These games are known for their unique tailgating parties around the parking lot and some tailgaters even arrive by boat!


Husky Stadium – Go Dawgs!


The University Farmers Market runs year-round and is a great way to spend your Sunday morning. You can pick up produce, peruse through unique hand-crafted vendors and listen to the fun and funky street performers. Take a walk through the gorgeous grounds of the UW Campus and enjoy the historic buildings, gardens, green spaces, visit the “Hogwarts” Suzzallo Library. If you are here in the spring, you will truly enjoy the blossoming cherry trees!


UW Cherry Blossom Festival


Hungry? For breakfast we suggest Portage Bay Café because they have fluffy and delicious pancakes, waffles and French toast with a toppings bar to make your breakfast the way you like it! The U-District is a cultural melting pot: Venezuelan, Hawaiian, Taiwanese, and more! But if you’re craving something that the locals love, Thai Tom is the place to stop by! Be prepared to wait in line for one of their six tables or order out and take your food back to your vacation rental.



There’s always something fun to do in the Seattle Neighborhoods of Ravenna and the U-District! If you appreciate adventurous days and peaceful nights, then this is the perfect spot to search for your next vacation rental home. At Sea to Sky, we have four beautiful vacation rentals available in these Seattle Neighborhoods and all are suited to traveling friends, couples and families looking to experience Seattle to the fullest!

118 N 36th St, Suite A, Seattle, WA 98103
(206) 632-4210