Mini-roadie just south of the 49

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I am so lucky to have two of the greatest travel pals . They’re both so easy-going and our trips are usually filled with tear-inducing laughter moments. Going away with them is “easy”. So a few months back, when it seemed like summer wasn’t coming fast enough, we made the last minute decision to take a short road trip south of the border to get away from real life for a night.

It’s funny because Bellingham/Birch Bay isn’t a place I would go away for the night, but it when I thought about it, I knew we’d be able to fill a day away with good times. With fun in mind, we grabbed our Nexus cards, jumped in the car and headed south of the 49th parallel.


Bellingham, like everywhere else it seems, has a growing craft brewery scene worth checking out. Boundary Bay Brewery is one of the oldest and our first destination.

A craft beer sampler with the Mariner’s game playing in the background. I was in my happy place.

The plan for the afternoon was to go to Taylor’s Shellfish on Chuckanut Drive for some slurping and sipping. To round out the menu for lunch, we headed to Aloha Poke (now called Fairhaven Poke), a spot that’s been highly recommended by many, that I’ve been eager to try out.

Aloha Poke Fairhaven


Aloha Poke Fairhaven selection
Aloha/Fairhaven serves traditional-style poke, as opposed to the bowls served in Vancouver where the sauce is added to the fish upon ordering. I liked that at Aloha, everything is ordered by weight so I could try a little bit of a lot of things.

It was a gorgeous day, which was perfect for our plan. Taylor’s Samish Farm Shellfish Market has a great picnic area where you can spend the afternoon. They only sell the basics and everything is do-it-yourself”, but I think that makes for more fun.

Taylors shellfish oysters crab chuckanut
Dungeness crab, 2 dozen oysters and a wine that seemed appropriate for me and my friends.

Susy Bando Taylors oyster

Taylors shellfish chuckanut oysters
Kumamoto’s and larger  Taylor’s famous (and easy to shuck) Shigoku’s.
Taylors shellfish shigoku
Perfect food, just as it is.

Taylor shellfish Chuckanut Mabanu

Aloha Poke Fairhaven bowl
Not to be forgotten, the poke from Aloha exceeded expectations.

Our next stop was to Trader Joe’s (a treat for us, since we don’t have it in Canada), where the plan was to pick up all the things we were ever curious about, but have never gotten to purchase for dinner. It’s never hard to fill up a cart in TJ’s.

Overwhelmed by the sheer abundance of our haul at Trader Joe’s we stopped in Bellingham at another brewery.

Alsan Brewing beer Bellingham
The sampler at Aslan (not Asian like we thought) Brewery.

We reached our final destination of Birch Bay just before the sunset. We grabbed some provisions and headed to the beach just in time to catch a gorgeous set.

Birch Bay manabu


Birch Bay sunset

Exhausted from our day, we heated the oven, opened some packages and had a feast in the condo. The trip wasn’t anything flashy, but fun nonetheless and a great example that fun, can be found doing the simplest things, with the right people.

Trader Joes haul

Best travel crew ever! Can’t wait until our next adventure…

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