Downtown Walla Walla is charming and wasn't too busy on this warm weekday morning. Like many cities we've visited lately, the main streets were decorated with the colorful floral baskets that I love.
Walla Walla is famous for its wineries -- and yummy sweet onions.
We got a little bit of history. Looks like there have been a few changes since 1859, when the town was founded. Covered wagons and horses are no longer common on Main Street!
The architecture of these old buildings and the obvious historic preservation they have undergone delights the eye.
It was also nice to see how many trees had been preserved along Main Street.
The public art we saw scattered around the downtown area was a fun surprise. Just look at this precious pooch! Who wouldn't want to take him home?
A close up...what talent!
I absolutely loved this whimsical piece. Which came first, the chicken or the egg?
And I very much coveted this colorful bicycle print outside an incredibly charming shop with a colorful sidewalk display. It's not like I have a house I can put this kind of stuff in any more, and we have quite a few prints stored already. But that didn't stop me from wanting it. Note what is being carried on the bike rather than the traditional water bottle!
In a slightly more low-brow vein, Barry couldn't resist snapping a few photos of this record shop. That's my guy!
As we continued walking east, we came upon Whitman College, so decided to walk around a little and check it out. A luxury hotel, original mission site, Whitman Road, and this college, among other sites, bear the Whitman name to commemorate Marcus Whitman, a physician and missionary in this part of the country in the early 1800s. There's quite a history between the Whitmans and the Cayuse and Umatilla Native Americans, resulting in the Whitman Massacre in 1847. If you are interested, read more at the highlighted links.
The campus was very green and restful -- looked like a good place for serious learning.
Walking back to downtown, we had to take a shot of the Marcus Whitman hotel; it's a very well-known landmark in downtown Walla Walla, towering above other buildings, and apparently quite luxurious, with a fancy restaurant as well.
Most if not all of the winery tasting rooms, of which there are many downtown, were closed on this visit -- they either opened in the afternoon or were only open on weekends or later in the week. One even had a "sold out" sign on the door. Good thing we didn't really plan on any wine tasting on this particular trip!
It was getting close to lunchtime by now, so we did take time for a little refreshment. We'd read great reviews of this French bakery on Tripadvisor, so we went in to check 'em out.
Um, yes please!
I got an iced cold-brewed coffee (delicious), and, after lengthy consideration, we ordered two pastries to start. (Yes, I said to START!) These were real works of art.
After finishing those off, oohing and ahhing the entire time, we decided to splurge on round two...they were THAT good. And we had walked a LOT. Right?!!? This time we split a caramel peach brioche and a lemon tart. Mmmmmm!
Finally sated, when we left the patisserie with full bellies and smiles on our faces (nothing like eating dessert for lunch!), this is how hot it was. Yep, 98 degrees.
With high noon upon us and temperatures promising to rise even higher, it was time to catch the 12:15 bus and be on our way. In the left of this photo, you can see the interesting local Barry dubbed "Rip van Winkle" due to his long white beard. He was on our morning and afternoon bus, and we saw him riding his bike around downtown a couple of times as we walked about. "Rip" was quite an interesting character, and we appreciate anyone who rides a bike!
And yes, we did have to walk back from the bus stop at Walmart in the heat. It's nearly all uphill to the place we're staying. Shower time!
Emily & Barry
We're a long-married, early-retired couple who are currently traveling as nomads with no fixed home base. After years of living in North Carolina (Emily's home state), we spent 18 months living oceanfront on Ambergris Caye, Belize, a year road-tripping the US in a Honda CR-V, a year in Playa del Carmen, Mexico, and are now roaming North America in our 32' motorhome, Pearl, following warm weather whenever possible.
Favorite Travel Blogs