Our Trip to the Pacific Northwest!

Our Trip to the Pacific Northwest!

beautiful picture of multnomah falls

This summer, we decided to travel to the Pacific Northwest! It was actually our first family vacation and we had so much fun.

It was only about a week long, but we were able to do and experience so much, and I’m very grateful I can travel and explore with my little family 🙂

Check out our 9 Tips for the Best Road Trip with Kids for travel essentials and things to know before making a road trip with kids!

Day 1-2:

We embarked on our 16-turned-21 hour drive at 6 am. 

We made several stops along the way but our favorite was this cute little park in Jordan Valley, OR. 

There, Brett and Bayleigh found a super preserved dragonfly!

toddler girl and boy in park
pretty blue dragonfly

We got to Moscow, ID around 3 am, where we checked into our cute little Airbnb.

Both kids did fantastic during the drive, which honestly surprised me a little bit.

It was such a long drive but they both did great.

aesthetic cup of coffee
mom and daughter cute mirror picture

We got a late start later that afternoon and didn’t leave our Airbnb until around 4 pm. We got brunch at a super cute diner in Pullman, WA and then went to the Lentil Festival. 

There, we had a bowl of the lentil chili and listened to one of the artists playing at the festival. I got a super cute tumbler from one of the booths that I got waaay too excited about. 

Bayleigh got a cute pair of sunglasses that she let Zen borrow for a bit.

We walked around the park and ended the night with boba. Overall a great day 🙂

father and son with sunglasses on
pretty park in washington

Day 3

We checked out of the Airbnb around 11 am and did a quick detour back over to Pullman, where we drove through the campus of Washington State University (WSU). 

I attended college there in 2016-2017 and was excited to point some things out to Brett as we drove.

We then started the drive to Boise. We stopped at a beautiful place in the mountains called McCall, ID. 

What a lovely little town and pit stop for us! The lake was beautiful and everything was so serene.

Along the drive there were tons of trees and rivers. We stopped at some great fast food places (they seem to love Subway up there, which is totally fine by us!)

We arrived in Boise around 9-10 pm and checked into our beautiful Airbnb there.

9 tips for the best road trip with kids
mom with kids in front of lake

Day 4

We started off the day with a trip down the road to the cutest little café, The Alchemist. What a lovely little place! 

There were couches for maximum comfort, as well as chairs and tables for studying or relaxing.

I had the best breakfast bowl and a cup of coffee. The atmosphere was super nice and no one seemed to mind a hyperactive toddler.

breakfast bowls at coffee shop

Brett ended up with a really bad headache after that, so while he and Zen slept, Bayleigh and I took a stroll down to Esther Simplot Park a couple blocks down.

We got snow cones, enjoyed watching all the bustling activities going on, and then headed back to the Airbnb.

toddler eating snow cone
toddler hugging baby brother
esther simplot lake
mom and daughter cute outfits

Day 5

Brett woke up with another headache, so while he rested, I decided to take the kids to the zoo. 

For anyone who knows me personally, this is a great endeavor as driving in new places gives me a lot of anxiety.

We stopped by The Alchemist again before we headed off. It was a nice little drive, thankfully.

Zoo Boise is fantastic! The kids and I had such a great time. Bayleigh was so excited to see the giraffes and the tiger. 

They both did so great staying in the stroller we rented and they both loved all of the animals.

Zen was so alert and observing of everything and I loved watching it all through their eyes.

It was a little warm that day but we survived! There is so much to see there and we all had a blast.

We stopped at the gift shop on our way out and got a couple toys/souvenirs. It was a fantastic day!

toddler cute pose in front of tiger at zoo
the gift of a sibling
mom and baby boy at zoo
boise zoo collage of big wildcats and meerkat
boise zoo collage of birds and crocodile
toddler and baby looking at hyenas at zoo

Day 6

We got a later start than initially planned, which ended up totally being okay. We checked out of the Airbnb a little after 11:30 am. 

Since we didn’t get to explore the city as much as planned, after we filled up on gas I asked Brett if we could drive around downtown and do some drive-by sightseeing. 

We drove by the State Capitol building and through some of the streets. Boise is definitely the cutest little city to me. 

We began the drive to Portland, OR and ended up there around 7 pm, where we checked into our basement Airbnb.

I know, I know. You’re probably saying, “A basement? Isn’t that a little sketchy?”

It actually ended up being our most spacious Airbnb, and it was super clean. 

It was newly renovated and had the cutest kitchen and bathroom. It also had two very nicely sized bedrooms.

We had a great stay in it and didn’t end up spending too much time there, anyways.

Day 7

We got an early start visited the Lan Su Chinese Garden in Portland, OR! What a beautiful place. We all really enjoyed strolling through and Brett helped Bayleigh complete a cute little scavenger hunt! A great start to an amazing day.

family photo at Lan Su Chinese Garden
dad and daughter walking through Chinese garden
beautiful scenic landscape of Lan Su Chinese Garden
dad and daughter sitting in chinese garden
mom and daughter at chinese garden
dad and daughter working on scavenger hunt
scenic lan su chinese garden collage

After the Chinese Garden, we drove through a Taco Bell and got some lunch. Then, we drove about 30 minutes and took the scenic highway over to the Columbia River Gorge. 

There, we visited two super great waterfalls: Wakeena Falls and Multnomah Falls! We were pretty tuckered out after those two (plus the garden earlier in the day)so we decided to head back after that.

It was a great way to end a beautiful day.

family photo at Multnomah Falls
father and son at Wakeena Falls
family photo at Wakeena Falls
family photo at Wakeena Falls
mom and daughter hiking
family at Wakeena Falls
family photo at Multnomah Falls
beautiful picture of Wakeena Falls

Day 8

We got a super early start and left by 6 am to begin the drive back home. We arrived home around 4 am the next day and were definitely ready for a good night’s sleep! 

The kids did fantastic on the drive home. Zen slept almost the entire time, minus the pitstops we took to eat and stretch legs.

Having been recently fully potty trained, Bayleigh didn’t have a single accident. She was a champ the entire trip and I am so proud of her.

Why I Recommend Traveling to the Pacific Northwest: 

There is so much to do and see! Just the drive alone is absolutely beautiful. Most of the highways are pretty straightforward and not too traffic-jammed (unless, of course, you’re driving through cities). 

There are tons of waterfalls, rivers, hiking areas, scenic routes, trees! Lots and lots of trees that make it just one of those “Wow, this is absolutely beautiful” places. 

Rain if you love that sort of weather (which I do!)

You can experience so much: meet new people, experience new food places, enjoy beautiful scenery.

I know, I know. You can do that on any vacation, right? 

Yes, you can. But the PNW is a great place nonetheless. And if you’re lucky enough to live there, just know I’m jealous! 

I was amazed by everybody’s kindness in Boise. There were several people who stopped with their babies to interact with mine. It was a beautiful thing to witness and I loved it.

I would love to hear your favorite places to go and see in the PNW, whether it’s if you live there or just love visiting it as much as I do. 

Let me know!

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