Some Basic Things You Need to Know Before Visiting Washington State

The state of Washington, also known as the “Evergreen State,” is located along the Pacific Ocean. It has a diverse geography and offers a mix of urban sophistication and rugged wilderness. People who live here enjoy both city life and outdoor activities like hiking and brewing their own beer.

Washingtonians tend to have left-leaning political views at both the state and federal level. They are known for being creative and entrepreneurial, often turning their locally made products into successful global brands. Amazon, Boeing, Microsoft, Starbucks, Expedia, and Grunge were all created in this location.

Select Your Methods of Transportation

Public transportation is quite good in the western third of the state. There are plenty of ferries, urban buses, and a north-south rail line. However, if you’re going to be in central and eastern Washington, it’s recommended to rent a car for easy travel. Learn more about how to get around Washington in our detailed guide.

Is Washington Good for Skiing?

Definitely. The state has more than twelve ski areas of different sizes and snow quality. Did you know that Mt Baker is actually one of the ski areas with the most snow in the world? And the Methow Valley has the second-largest network of cross-country trails in the United States. Some of the best day resorts near Seattle are Stevens Pass and The Summit at Snoqualmie. Crystal Mountain, located near Mt Rainier, is the most extensive resort in the state of Washington. It is also the only resort that offers ski-in overnight lodging.

What is the Deal With Sales Tax?

The sales taxes in Washington are quite high. The state tax rate is 6.5 percent. However, the overall tax rate can be nearly 10 percent in some places due to additional local taxes that vary from city to city. There is no tax on groceries or prescription medications. Tax is paid when you buy something and is not usually included in the price you see.

Locals Worship the Outdoors

Don’t feel scared or overwhelmed, just join them. The Northwestern region is known for its variety of lakes, forests, and mountains, which greatly influence the way of life for many people living there. It is not surprising that the American Alpine Institute is located in Washington, as it is a perfect fit for the outdoor lifestyle of the region. People who live in the area are very excited about the idea of being able to enjoy nature while still having all the conveniences of city life. You can easily go hiking through alpine flower meadows during the day and then later in the evening, watch a tribute band for Nirvana at a grungy pub.

Also Read: Check These Most Dangerous Intersections in Connecticut Till Now

Tipping is Mandatory

Welcome to the United States, where tipping is a common practice and often involves giving generous amounts of money. A baseline gratuity of twenty percent is typically expected for most services, such as taxis and restaurants. However, for exceptional service, it is customary to give a gratuity of twenty-five percent.

Music is Ingrained Into the Psyche

Since the 1940s, Washington, especially Seattle, has been known for its strong musical scene. It started with jazz and later expanded to include grunge and rap. Bing Crosby was raised in Spokane. Nirvana, who were pioneers of grunge, came from Aberdeen. The underground feminist punk movement called Riot Grrrl emerged from Olympia in the 1990s.

Seattle is the birthplace of several famous musicians. Some of them include jazz/blues singer Ernestine Anderson, legendary producer and composer Quincy Jones, rock guitarist Jimi Hendrix, and pop-rap singer Macklemore. Amazingly, all four musicians went to the same high school called Garfield in the Central District of the city.

There are many impressive music venues to choose from, such as the Gorge Amphitheatre near Ellensburg, the Dome in Tacoma, and The Crocodile in Seattle, which is a famous grunge haven that recently moved to a new location.

Beer is King

People in Washington state really enjoy beer, especially if it’s powerful, made by small breweries, and has flavours from ageing in whisky barrels or, most importantly, hops (the state produces 70% of the country’s hop supply). McMenamins is a company that has many old-fashioned pubs with wooden walls. They are well-known in the state. Washington was one of the first places to start making craft beer and microbrews in the 1980s. Find the nearby brewpubs and get ready to read through extensive beer menus.

Coffee is Culture

Seattle is the city where Starbucks was invented and where the second-wave coffee movement began in the 1970s and ’80s. Coffee is extremely important to the people of Washington, just like tea is to the British. It is a local obsession and a crucial part of the culture. After Starbucks became popular, many smaller companies started opening coffee bars in cities. These coffee bars are now like office spaces where people can work on their laptops. They take advantage of the free wifi and enjoy their grande vanilla low-fat lattes for a long time.

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