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A rainbow over a bridge in Bellevue, Washington

Bellevue is one of the most populated cities in Washington State, with more than 150,000 residents. Located east of Seattle on the opposite shore of Lake Washington, Bellevue isn’t a destination you should overlook. 

If you’re planning a getaway and wondering whether Bellevue is worth a visit, it’s perfect as an addition to a Seattle trip or as its own weekend adventure. With this Bellevue three-day itinerary, you can explore the city’s highlights on a limited time line. 

[Related: Events in Washington State, Our Top 6]

What to do in Bellevue

Day 1: Explore the Heart of Bellevue

What’s a better way to experience the city than by visiting a few of its most iconic locales? The day one plan of our Bellevue three-day itinerary hits some of the city’s most-beloved places (you’ve likely scrolled by them on your Instagram feed a time or two). 

Visit Old Bellevue

Kick off your Bellevue vacation in the historic heart of the city. Old Bellevue’s Main Street has a unique charm, with quaint storefronts, local boutiques, specialty treats and gift shops. 

Walk Bellevue Downtown Park

After some time in Old Bellevue, head over to Bellevue Downtown Park. It’s only a 10-minute walk, and if you need a pick-me-up, stop by Third Culture Coffee for a quick bite and a caffeine fix. 

The park boasts 21 acres in the center of the city, complete with lush green grass, a waterfall, a children’s playground and plenty of room to relax or stroll. You might grab a quick bite to go and soak it all in. 

See the Bellevue Arts Museum

Another short walk away is the Bellevue Arts Museum, known for its focus on art, craft and design. It has permanent installations as well as rotating exhibitions featuring a variety of mediums. 

The museum offers self-guided tours, a glimpse into behind-the-scenes processes and educational workshops. Plan to spend at least an hour exploring all that the museum showcases. 

Experience the Bellevue Collection

Next, spend the evening shopping at the Bellevue Collection. It includes three shopping areas: the Bellevue Square Mall, Lincoln Square and Bellevue Place. 

These areas are all located within a few blocks of one another, and it’ll take you several hours to check it all out. You’ll find a range of stores, from fashion and entertainment to technology and restaurants. During certain times of the year, the Collection hosts events and festivals. 

Grab dinner at Castilla for modern Spanish cuisine and tapas. If that doesn’t suit your fancy, the Collection has more than 50 dining options to choose from.

Want to Learn More?

If you’ve got spare time and want to learn more about Bellevue’s history, consider the Early Bellevue Walking Tour (if available when you visit). You can download a brochure for this self-guided tour and check out 24 sites important to the city’s past. 

Day 2: Get Outdoors

Bellevue offers a wide range of outdoor activities, so try to catch a couple. On day two, change gears and explore the great outdoors! 

Get an Adrenaline Boost at the Bellevue Zip Tour

Whether you’re adult travelers or a family with kids, the Bellevue Zip Tour is guaranteed fun for everyone. The tour sends you soaring through the trees on seven zip lines through Eastgate Park. You’ll also climb across suspension bridges and take short walks. 

Smell the Roses at Bellevue Botanical Garden

After flying through the treetops, slow down and smell the roses at Bellevue Botanical Garden. The garden has 53 acres to explore, with beautiful arrays of wildflowers, native plants, water displays and pathways. Plus, admission is always free! 

[Related: Where to See Flower Fields in Washington State]

Enjoy the Outdoors at Chism Beach Park

Spend the rest of your day soaking up sun at Chism Beach Park. The park sits on the shores of Lake Washington and is the perfect spot to spend the day swimming, fishing or relaxing. The park features a playground, dock, swimming area and expansive picnic space. 

Day 3: Play

If you’re traveling with children, you might worry about finding enough events to hold their interest. But don’t fear — there are plenty of activities in Bellevue to entertain folks of all ages. 

Slow Down at Kelsey Creek Farm

You’ll find Kelsey Creek Farm just minutes outside downtown. It’s a family farm geared toward visitors who love animals, the outdoors, history and serenity. 

Spend time chilling with farm animals and exploring 150 acres of meadows, wetlands and forests. Want to learn more about the farm? Consider joining one of its group tours. 

Play at the KidsQuest Children’s Museum

The KidsQuest Children’s Museum is a must-see attraction when visiting Bellevue with young ones. This interactive museum focuses on science, engineering, math and technology, but it introduces the subjects in a fun way that keeps kids interested.

The museum houses multiple exhibits, a two-story atrium climber and engrossing programs. 

Room for More Play? 

If that’s not enough play for you, head over to Dave & Buster’s in the evening for arcade games and dinner. 

Are you traveling kid-free? Spend the day hiking at Cougar Mountain Regional Wildlife Park, then head to Lucky Strike Bellevue for some bowling, dancing, arcade games and cocktails. You must be at least 21 years old to enter.

Need a Place to Stay?

Bellevue has a variety of hotel options for a place to rest your head. If you want to stay downtown, these hotels are nearby: 

These hotels’ prices should suit most budgets. If you opt to stay in one, you’ll be close enough to travel with ease around Downtown Bellevue.

Let Fun Stuff WA Be Your Bellevue Travel Guide

With this Bellevue three-day itinerary, you’ll hit practically all the city’s major attractions. So, what are you waiting for? 

If you’re headed to Washington State, Fun Stuff WA wants to be your go-to resource. Contact us today for more info!

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Featured image via Pixabay