With 53 acres of display gardens, woodlands, meadows and wetlands, the Bellevue Botanical Gardens offer a break from the city without having to actually leave Bellevue. Within the garden grounds, you will find an array of landscapes, water features, and woodland trails for a peaceful walk in the woods. During the winter Holiday season the Gardens offer an amazing light display – the Garden d’Lights.The Gardens do not charge an admission fee, except during the Garden d’Lights.
To reach the gardens, exit the Rapid Ride B Line at the 124th Ave NE Station, walk south along 124th Ave NE, preferably on the eastern sidewalk, until you reach Main Street. At Main Street continue up a small hill to the gardens on the south side of Main Street. The total walking distance from 124th Ave NE is about .7 miles or 15 minutes. You can also ride a bike and lock it up at the bike racks available just off of the main parking lot.
For more information visit the Garden’s web site at: http://www.bellevuebotanical.org/.
A while back I spent several days conducting “research” on establishments for a B-Line pub crawl event. Of all the drinking establishments I visited, the Black Raven Brewing Company was by far my favorite. Located in an office park a 1/2 mile from the B-Line, Black Raven’s taproom has all of their beers in a warm and relaxed atmosphere. They don’t serve food, other than free peanuts and pretzels, but you can have pizza delivered by Flying Saucer Pizza to enjoy with your fresh beer. (I think Zeek’s also delivers but that is unconfirmed, check with Zeeks and/or Black Raven). Lastly, you can get growlers and kegs to go. (A keg on the bus. Now that would be interesting)
To get there, take the B-Line to the stop at 148th Ave NE & NE 87th St in Redmond, just before/after the intersection with Willows Road. From the bus stop walk east on 90th and then north on Willows Road using the large sidewalk on the east side of Willows. Right before 95th turn east and scramble over the bark covered berm and walk into the parking lot next to the inactive railroad tracks. (This avoids walking along NE 95th which doesn’t have a sidewalk. It’s also a shortcut since the driveway for Black Raven is located past the entrance to the Tap Room) You can also find directions here on Google maps.
This area isn’t normally someplace you’d think of walking around, given that it’s a bunch of office parks in a very suburban and car-dependent setting. But the sidewalks are wide and comfortable and it’s not that long of a walk. If you bring a bike, Black Raven also has a small bike rack out front. (Note: While biking while intoxicated is not technically a crime, it IS pretty stupid. Drink responsibly and be prepared to walk your bike back to the bus.) If you’re up for a little transit/beer adventure, why not give Black Raven a try?