City Guide Book
Welcome to Spokane Hello, Spokane is excited and pleased to welcome you to the beautiful city we are. With four distinct seasons, Spokane offers many different opportunities for adventure and recreation. Many visitors and longtime residents of Spokane take advantage of Spokane’s nearby mountains that allow for winter sports such as skiing and snowshoeing, as well as, summer biking and hiking. Spokane’s ideal location next to many different lakes and rivers allows for visitors to swim, fish, and boat in and around this beautiful city. Even the Spokane River flows directly through downtown Spokane. Spokane also hosts a range of beautiful parks within downtown and inside cozy neighborhoods for relaxing days with the family. Visiting in the fall? Be sure to visit the Finch Arboretum to see all the trees changing color. The Canadian border is little less than a 2 hour drive away, and only 20 minutes from Spokane is the Idaho border. Spokane draws visitors from across the country and around the world through annual events such as Bloomsday and Hoopfest. Bloomsday is Spokane’s May 12k run started in 1977. Shutting down the entire downtown, Hoopfest is the world’s largest 3 on 3 basketball tournament. Spokane’s festivals draw musical artists, food, shopping, interactive entertainment, and unite the community. For visitors and residents looking for a quiet afternoon or evening, Spokane offers Wine tastings, art galleries, preforming arts shows, fine dining, and delicious cafes. Since Spokane is the second largest city in the state, it boasts a wide variety of attractions. Spokane has also hosted the U.S. Figure Skating Championships in 2007 and 2010.
Mt. Spokane Mt. Spokane Ski & Snowboard Park operates within Mt. Spokane State Park, one of the largest of Washingtonâ€™s State Parks at 13,919 acres. In addition to alpine winter recreation, the Park offers yearround recreation including nordic skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, camping, horseback riding, biking and hiking trails, berry picking, sightseeing, and more.
Table of Contents
Points of Interest
Sports and Events
Universities and Business
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History of Spokane Founded in 1873 by James Nettle Glover, Spokane was first a small settlement known as Spokan Falls. The natural resources of Eastern Washington- fertile soil, timber, and mineral wealth- eventually attracted more settlers to the area. The present boundaries of Spokane County were created by the legislature in 1879. Spokane was transformed when the Northern Pacific Railroad arrived in 1881 and was linked transcontinentally in 1883. In that same year, Spokane experienced its first boom when the discovery of gold in the Coeur dâ€™Alene mining district established Spokane as the service center for the north Idaho mines. Spokane suddenly became the center of regional commerce, becoming the main gate to the Pacific Northwest and establishing the Inland Empire which stretched from southern British Columbia to Oregonâ€™s Blue Mountains, from the Cascades to the Rockies. Local investors funded by money made in the mines, quickly helped rebuild the city following the fire of 1889. Railroads influenced both the development and appearance of Spokane. With a population of just over 300 in 1880, Spokane had grown in leaps and bounds to over 100,000 people by 1909, making the city, at the time, larger than Salt Lake City and the largest city west of Minneapolis. With the greatest water power west of the Niagara, Spokane, the largest city between Minneapolis and Seattle, was touted as a great place to live, a fine place to get an education, with the finest hotels, and the greatest diversity of architecture in any city of its size in the United States.
Food While in Spokane, you’ll definitely want to check out the local restaurants showcasing the region’s cuisine in all its natural glory. The state’s proximity to the Pacific Ocean and Spokane’s 76 regional lakes equate to fish and seafood as a constant on menus aiming to remain true to the area. With a nod to the farm-totable movement, major emphasis is placed on fresh ingredients sourced as locally as possible. Spokane has a wide variety of delightful dining options. You can find every
The Flying Goat
type of cuisine from northwest to ethnic such as Mexican, Japanese and Thai. Every type of cuisine is available from local favorites to nationally recognized chains. Discover all of the possibilities such fine dining, casual dining, ethnic food, pizza, fast food, bakeries and coffee and tea houses. The North Side is by far the largest area stretching from downtown up to Mead. Division Street, a popular way to get to the north side, is lined with restaurants. Find Chinese, Mexican, fast food, pizza and everything else. Hungry for a burger and milkshake? Try eating at the famous milk bottle located the Garland District.
Manito Tap House
Points of Interest Sometimes you need a vacation from your vacation and with so much to do in Lilac City, the parks and gardens may be the perfect place for you and your family to unwind and catch your collective breath. So grab a blanket and a patch of grass in one of Spokane’s many parks for some downtime near downtown. When you’re looking for the perfect spot to do a little napping, photography, or quiet contemplation, head to Manito Park. This sprawling 90-acre public park includes six gardens for brilliant variety. Take a stroll through the symmetrical Duncan Garden, or enjoy the hydrangeas and hibiscus in the Perennial Garden. If it starts to rain, find refuge in the Gaiser Conservatory greenhouse, home to a wild dichotomy of desert and tropical plants. For a truly serene setting, make your way to the flowing willows and vibrant azaleas in the Nishinomiya Tsutakawa Japanese Garden - a garden that honors Nishinomiya, Japan, Spokane’s sister city. Of course, Rose Hill and Lilac Garden offer wonderful displays of their namesake’s flowers and both provide perfect settings for budding photographers. Perhaps you’d rather look up and wander through trees, and greater Spokane has no shortage of wooded areas to enjoy. The John A. Finch Arboretum will guide you through an impressive collection of conifer and maple trees.Depending on the season, you might catch a summer concert, an evening movie, or a day-long picnic in the expansive Liberty Pavillion Park. Another great option for outdoor enthusiasts is to spend an afternoon at the falls at Mirabeau Point Park or jog the trails of Mirabeau Meadows.
Riverfront Park Riverfront Park is virtually unavoidable when in Spokane, and for good reason! The park was designed for Expo ‘74 and encompasses several points of interest. You won’t miss the 155-foot Great Northern Clocktower and a short walk across a suspension bridge will place you on the beautiful island called snxw mene in the indigenous Salish language. Formerly Canada Island, snxw mene (sin-HOO-menhuh) — or ”salmon people” in English — was renamed in early 2017 to honor the Spokane Tribe. And no trip to Riverfront Park would be complete without seeing Upper Falls from along the Centennial Trail, though spring is the time to see the water flow at its peak. With a little exploration, Spokane’s variety of parks and gardens will provide just the right spot for you and your family to relax in a beautiful atmosphere.
Hotels From the sleek style of trendy boutique hotels to the old-world charm of historic bed and breakfasts to full-service RV resorts, find an array of accommodations in the Spokane area to meet every budget, occasion, and taste. In fact, Spokane prides itself on offering places to stay that have as much personality as the city itself. In Spokane’s downtown, you’ll find an abundance of fine hotels in prime locations that allow for easy access to popular places for work and play. Downtown hotels are close to the Spokane Convention Center, which hosts big conventions and meeting. Locals and visitors like the greenspace and natural beauty of Riverfront Park. For lovers of art and music, the Martin Woldson Theater at the Fox, Knitting Factory Concert House, and Bing Crosby Theater are just steps away from immersion in Spokane’s vibrant music and arts scene. For students and parents, downtown hotels are close to Gonzaga University and a perfect home base for campus visits and graduation travel. Business and event travelers on a mission may have amenities like an airport shuttle, gym, 24-hour business center, and multiple restaurants on their must-have lists, in which case downtown hotels, such as Doubletree by Hilton Spokane City Center, could be the right fit. Find even more in our listings. If you’re more interested in exploring Spokane’s natural side, you won’t be disappointed in the resorts and hotels close to outdoor adventures. You need only decide how you’re going to take in the pristine beauty of the Intermountain Northwest. You can go by ground on foot, skis, bike, or horseback. You may even travel by water in a kayak or take to the skies with a rush through the pines via
Davenport Grand Hotel
zipline. At a guest ranch like Red Horse Mountain Ranch, be sure to make time for outdoor activities. Get your boots on for a day of hiking. Ready your tackle box for fly fishing. You can even test your aim with archery and your equestrian skills with summer horseback riding. Families and groups traveling together may enjoy the extra space and privacy of a Spokane vacation rental. Should it be nestled among the pines in Riverside State Park or in town in the form of a stylishly furnished apartment? Your call. Travel back in time and revel in the grandeur of a historic hotel, such as the Historic Davenport. Lovingly restored to their original splendor, thoughtful touches and superior craftsmanship are evident in every detail. Roll the dice or try your hand at a big win at a casino resort. Play late into the night and then retreat to your room to refresh. Get swept away from the lakeshore by making a houseboat your home for a week. No matter whatâ€™s on your checklist, Spokane has the perfect accommodations for the trip you envision. Explore your many choices below. We canâ€™t wait to welcome you.
Events & Sports Vibrant and healthy Spokane is an outdoors and sports haven. This is Washington after all! Throughout the year there is something going on for every sports lover, whether you want to jump in and play, or prefer to watch while enjoying a cold beer and hot dog. Weâ€™ve provided a few examples of sports in Spokane below!
Nightlife The sun has set. Your hiking boots are off and your shopping bags are tucked away. But it would be foolish to think that your day is over, when in a way it has only begun. There is another side to Spokane, one that comes alive after dark. So don’t forget to add our thrilling nightlife to your travel agenda – you won’t want to miss out on the dancing, music, clubs, and concerts available around town every night of the week. Make the most of your travel adventure by adding live music to the mix. Local haunts like Zola or The Bartlett give both visitors and locals the kind of unique musical experiences you cannot find anywhere else. For the biggest touring acts, you need to see who is coming to the INB Performing Arts Center and the Spokane Arena – both spots feature an assortment of star performers. Then again, there are times when you just need to dance. Waltz into Globe Bar & Kitchen or nYne for a hip bar atmosphere that happily accommodates cocktails, good food, and dancing. No matter what brings you to our dynamic home, we have a host of other activities to balance out your stay. Our wineries pair perfectly with our farmer’s markets, our golf courses are on par with our museums, and the cool mist of the Spokane River down the falls flows into hot nights. Spokane is creative by nature – no matter what time you visit. Night owls are always welcome. After all, this is your vacation: bedtimes need not apply.
University & Business There are 6 colleges within 50 miles of Spokane. Located in Washington with a population of 208,916, the closest colleges are ranked by distance from Spokane. The nearest college is Gonzaga University at a distance of 0.7 miles from Spokane center. This directory is inclusive of nearby two and four year schools, both public and private. If you are looking for more affordable options or not ready for a full four year program, consider local Spokane community colleges.
Leasiure All the snow is making us want to hit the slopes at our Spokane ski resorts! You might have a favorite mountain that you love to go to, but there are 7 ski resorts that are within 172 miles of Spokane! All are great ski resorts but they offer more than just a day on the mountain. Most have spas, water parks, and other great things to do while your there to make a weekend out of it!
49 Degrees North
Schweitzer Schweitzer Mountain Resort is a yearround, family friendly destination located in the Idaho Panhandle, 85 miles from Spokane, WA and 66 miles south of the Canadian border into British Columbia. The resort boasts 2900 acres of varied terrain for skiing and snowboarding as well as 32 kilometers of Nordic trails for crosscountry, snowshoeing and snowbiking during the winter season. Other activities for non-skiers like an onsite spa, dining, and shopping are all located in the intimate village.
Thanks for Visiting!
Travel Book of Spokane