Independent Travel Show Notes: Olympic Peninsula, Washington

 Independent Travel Show Notes: Olympic Peninsula, Washington

Welcome to Dr. Mary Travelbest’s Independent Travel Guide. This is for women who travel, who want to travel, and especially for those who want to travel independently.

In this episode: FAQ is on House swapping. The destination is Olympic Peninsula, Washington. My mistake is falling asleep on the train and missing my stop and the Travel advice is using your mobile phone when on the road.

FAQ: What is house swapping? When does that make sense to do?
This is where you exchange your home for another in the place you want to go.
Full disclosure: I have not done this yet myself.
Here are three clubs you can join to learn more and start swapping: and 
Travel writer, Pauline Frommer says that "all have good customer service and lots and lots of members.” That last part is important, because it’s all about the numbers. The newer clubs that are opening aren’t charging fees because they’re trying to build up their membership, so you have fewer choices with them, which doesn’t make sense for me. Some of these exchanges charge a $100 membership fee which can save several thousand dollars on lodgings. Another one, is small, but good for people who need long-term exchange. So, tell me what you find is the best.

Today’s Independent Destination   Olympic Peninsula, WA

It’s in the northwest corner of the USA. You’ll see magnificent mountains, rugged coastlines, and a rain forest along with small towns, great food and culture.

First, Touristy places: You’ll likely first visit Seattle (SeaTac International Airport) and see some of these sites in the downtown area and nearby.
The original Starbuck’s Coffee Shop
Pioneer Square (old and worn)
Pike’s Market- Fish (Jack’s), Chowder/King Salmon
Pier 39
Minor’s Landing
Safeco Field-Mariners
Mt. Rainer

Off the beaten path: In the center of the Peninsula is Olympic National Park, with the Olympic National Forest at the lower elevations. Several rivers, lakes and Indian Reservations are here. If you take Highway 101, you can circle the area and go from rainforests with cool temps to coastal beaches with marine sanctuaries that are much different in climate. You could spend weeks or just days, depending on your availability and interest. Here are some of the things that I found most interesting on the Olympic Peninsula.

A find. Worth spending some time here…southeast part of the peninsula is the city of Olympia-Washington’s State Capital, House of Congress, where you can visit and walk around and explore without a tour guide. There is no cost to visit. And it’s right on the lovely Puget Sound

Today’s Mistake:  Falling asleep on the train and missing your stop

Have you ever done this? I fell asleep on the train from Chicago. I Woke up at the end of the line and Had to take a taxi to my destination. Then I left my wallet in the cab. Two big mistakes in one night. Bad day. Don’t do that. Make sure you set an alarm on your phone, so you wake up before your train stop.

Today’s Travel Advice: Using your mobile device like a pro

Mobile devices are a challenge as you grow older and maybe don’t know how to use them. Get to know your phone in advance. Push the buttons and practice ahead of travel. Find out what settings you will need to learn. Know when you have service via WiFi and when you need it. Learn about Virtual Private Networks or VPN’s. Bring an extra cord and backup batteries for charging, just in case. Ask if you need help and don’t be feeling bad about that.
Protect your phone with a plastic cover like an Otterbox. In case you drop it, you will not lose your data. Get the Waze app, so you can find your destination, or Google Maps, or both!

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