How to spend a cozy winter weekend in Kirkland
Kirkland, situated on the eastern edge of Lake Washington, is a great year-round destination with convenient access to the water to the west, Woodinville wine country to the north, and the Cascade Mountains and Snoqualmie Pass to the east. Sure, they may be a little rainy, but the quieter winter months make an excellent time to explore the city and nearby Evergreen State attractions.
Here are some great ideas when cozying up for a weekend in Kirkland this winter.
Dotted with restaurants, bars, galleries, and shops, downtown Kirkland is a beautiful and quaint area to meander through. The lakeside Marina Park is a beautiful public park for relaxing or watching the sunset over the Seattle skyline and the Olympic Mountains.
In the heart of downtown, Park Lane is a vibrant award-winning street; an outdoor sculpture gallery serves as the centerpiece of this popular boutique shopping corridor.
An annual tradition, Winterfest blends fun, food, and festivities in this family-friendly event. Featuring a sledding hill, entertainment, tree lighting, photos with Santa, alpacas, food trucks, hot chocolate, and bonfires, this event is one to circle on your calendar!
Kirkland Winterfest generally runs in December.
Wines and Vines of Woodinville
A short 15-minute drive north of Kirkland is the popular Woodinville wine region, boasting some of Washington State’s top vineyards. During your visit to Kirkland, you can enjoy a single glass or learn how to “properly taste” at any of several Woodinville tasting rooms, or check out one of the Kirkland Chamber or Kirkland Downtown Association's quarterly wine walks.
Kirkland is a destination that inspires R&R with a mix of spas, yoga studios, and gyms. Be reawakened and realigned on the peaceful shores of Lake Washington at an array of facilities offering a range of facials, body treatments, massages, and salon services. Ready to indulge yourself? Here are a few of our favorite suggestions for where and how:
Club Pilates – Offering a range of classes to challenge the mind and body, Club Pilates provides a path to a richer, more fulfilling life.
Kirkland Whole Life Clinic – A self-described “sanctuary for self-discovery and healing,” this clinic features acupuncture and massage services, as well as yoga.
Still Spa at the Woodmark Hotel – Using only the finest skin care products available, Still Spa’s highly trained professionals provide a wide range of services guaranteed to make you feel pampered from head to toe.
At home in Washington yet celebrating a passion for northern Italian cuisine, Café Juanita blends the finest ingredients from Italy and the Pacific Northwest into an unbeatable fusion. The restaurant’s menu changes frequently to incorporate the freshest ingredients, all of which are sustainably farmed. Capping off a winter evening with dinner and wine at Café Juanita is a must when visiting Kirkland.
This Kirkland favorite is open for breakfast, brunch, lunch and dinner. The restaurant is committed to serving its community with the best the Northwest has to offer, partnering with local farms and businesses supporting sustainable practices and products. Hint: DERU’s sweet treats, including cookies, pastries and cakes, are not to be missed!
An intimate 36-seat French restaurant set in the heart of Kirkland, Lynn’s Bistro is a favorite for locals and visitors alike. The menu features French onion soup, duck breast and Lynn’s signature crab cakes, which encourages lingering on a chilly winter day. If you need an excuse to stay a little longer, don’t miss out on the specialty crêpes filled with ice cream and fresh berries and topped with chocolate sauce!
Skiing and Snowboarding
Less than an hour from downtown Kirkland are the slopes of the Summit at Snoqualmie. The ski area features four unique zones for skiing and snowboarding: Snoqualmie East, Central and West, and Snoqualmie Alpental. All ages and ability levels are encouraged to explore the variable terrain that ranges from beginner to expert (beginners should stick to Snoqualmie West and Central, while experts may check out the steeps of Alpental).
Best of all, the Summit at Snoqualmie features nearly 600 acres of night skiing, the most in the US!
If you’re looking for some snowy winter fun without the skis, you’re in luck! The Summit at Snoqualmie offers a Summit Tubing Park, including 7 individual, perfectly manicured lanes stretching the length of a football field.
For free access, head to Hyak Sno-Park for groomed sledding hills. Cross-country skiing and snowshoeing are also popular winter activities here. Note: you’ll need a Sno-Park day permit and your daily or annual Discover Pass to get into the park.
Kirkland offers several great hotels for all speeds of travelers. We’ve highlighted a few of our favorites below.
Located in charming downtown Kirkland, The Heathman is the only boutique hotel in the heart of the vibrant waterfront neighborhood. At The Heathman, you’re conveniently within easy walking distance of Lake Washington, galleries, shops and restaurants.
The hotel features luxurious and comfortable guestrooms that are perfect for staying cozy during a chilly winter day, or for freshening up after a fun day on the slopes.
Voted the #1 resort in the Pacific Northwest and Alaska by Condé Nast Traveler, The Woodmark Hotel and Still Spa is the only independent boutique hotel on the picturesque shores of Lake Washington. Known for delighting its guests with individualized touches to make each visit truly special, The Woodmark sets the bar for hospitality.
Featuring two restaurants, a full-service spa, and access to a great fitness studio, there’s hardly a better place to relax this winter.