Spokane, Washington is a city with about 210 thousand residents, located on the shores of the Spokane River, about 4 hours due East of Seattle and near the state line between Washington and Idaho. Spokane is the 2nd biggest city in Washington behind Seattle. Spokane is less than an 8-hour drive away from many of the region's major urban centers – including Boise, Idaho, Portland, Oregon, Seattle, Washington, Vancouver, British Columbia, and Calgary, Alberta. The name “Spokane” comes from the Salishan language of Native Americans, meaning “Children of the Sun”.
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Travelers flying to Spokane will often land at Spokane International Airport (airport code: GEG). The unusual code letters reflect the location “Geiger Field”, which is named in honor of U.S. Army pilot, Major Harold Geiger. Spokane International sits about 5 miles (or a 10-minute drive in your rental car) west of the city's downtown area. At the airport you will find 8 car rental agencies in Spokane International's Ground Transportation Center – Alamo, Avis, Budget, Dollar, Enterprise, Hertz, National, and Thrifty.
Spokane Valley is often called the “Lilac city”. It is located in Spokane County and is the economical hub of the eastern region of Washington and the county seat of the state.
Renown for its natural surroundings and temperate climate the area has 13 parks and a large variety of recreational activities. Visitors can walk, bike or go horse-back riding or simply enjoy the natural beauty of the area. Places and events of interest include:
1. The Spokane Hoopfest: This is a largest 3 on 3 basketball tournament in the world with over 400 courts. The tournament is the biggest and the most popular event in Spokane valley and takes place in the last week of June. For more information on the Hoopfest click on the link.
2. Spokane Riverfront Park The RiverFront Park is often called the oasis in Downtown Spokane Valley. The Park offers a splendid view of the river and was the host for the 1974 World's Fair. Its many features include a Fall Skyride, an Ice Palace skating rink, the historic Looff Carrousel and an IMAX cinema.
3. River Park Square: River Park Square is the shopping hub of Spokane Valley. It offers quality goods at reasonable prices. In addition to numerous stores, there are several fast food outlets, novelty stores and theaters.
4. Monroe Street Bridge: The Bridge was constructed in 1911 and is the largest arch bridge in the US. The bridge is built over the falls of the River Spokane and connects the north and south of Spokane city.
5. The Northwest Museums of Arts and Culture: The museum features numerous local artifacts and memorabilia. The varied exhibits highlight the culture and heritage of the region including firearms, sports and local medicines. Museum hours are Tuesday - Sunday: 11 am - 5 pm, closed on Mondays. For more information on the Museum click on the link.