Seattle Culture

Girlfriend Getaways: Explore Self-Care Throughout March

Where to unwind during Women Making History Month

By Alicia Erickson March 6, 2024


Self-care looks different for everyone. Maybe it’s a quiet walk in nature, a morning spent with your favorite book, or cooking your favorite meal. Lately, I’ve been relishing these small rituals and making space for the things that spark joy and sunshine in the everyday. Going for a run in a rainy forest to clear my head. Taking that ski lesson that I had long been considering. Spending a morning wandering through a thought-provoking art exhibit. Unwinding with a restorative yoga class or an afternoon at a sauna. 

On International Women’s Day March 8, or Women Making History Month throughout March in Washington state, I encourage you to get outside and explore. Create, rest, indulge in self-care, or whatever your soul may be craving a little more of at the moment. And, in step with International Women’s Day 2024’s theme, “Inspire Inclusion,” support other women who are leading the way in the outdoor, wellness, and arts spaces, while in your own self-care. Whether you’re looking to ignite your creative side or expand your connection with the wilderness, I’ve rounded up some inspiration to celebrate yourself and other Washington women in March and beyond. 

Plan a warm-weather adventure in the San Juan Islands: While it’s not the season for outdoor adventures in Washington’s islands just yet, it’s never too early to start planning your sunny escape. Outdoor Odysseys runs multi-day kayaking trips in the San Juans, including a three-day “women on the water” adventure. Paddle through the magic of the Salish Sea in the company of female guides and adventurers. Master the foundations of kayaking, explore the rugged landscapes and calming waters of the San Juan archipelago, and camp beneath the unspoiled night skies. If you’re looking to learn the basics, the women-owned Dragonfly Kayak Tours in Bellingham offers intro to kayaking courses. After you’ve gained confidence on the water, join Dragonfly owner Tori Ayers or one of the other Dragonfly guides on a half-to multi-day tour around Bellingham or some of the quieter islands in the San Juans. 

Outdoor Odysseys offers multi-day kayaking trips in the San Juans.

Photo from Outdoor Odysseys


Connect to nature with yoga and hiking: A perfect blend of fresh air, mindful movement, and self-care. Sarah’s Greenheart Yoga was born out of yoga teacher and workshop facilitator Sarah Weeldreyer’s own healing process through yoga and wilderness. Sarah’s guided experiences immerse people into her favorite local wild spaces in the Issaquah area, while teaching them about the flora and fauna in the forests. After a morning of exploring, connecting, and playing in nature, unwind and breathe as she leads you through a yoga class beneath a canopy of trees. 

Experience yoga amidst the trees following a mindful stroll through the woods with Greenheart Yoga

Photo by Sarah Weeldreyer


Get outside and learn a new skill: Eager to refine your ski skills and feel more confident swooshing down a mountain? Curious about switching out your road bike for a mountain bike and riding down rugged trails? Shannon Mahre, an all-season coach and sponsored athlete, breaks gender barriers in the outdoor space. Through her collective, Girls with Grit, Mahre runs year-round adventure sports lessons and events in the Yakima Valley. Mahre and her team of female guides help other women conquer the wilds of Washington, from trail running and mountain biking to skiing and paddle boarding. If none of those float your boat, Red’s in Yakima also offers women’s only fly-fishing courses. Start with a morning yoga class and then learn the basics of fly fishing, from the gear to casting a rod. 

Girls with Grit offers ski lessons and various outdoor adventures.

Photo from Mahre Media

A women’s only fly-fishing course at Red’s in Yakima.

Photo from Red's Fly Shop


Unwind and treat yourself to a spa day: The calm energy of a spa holds a unique power to soothe the mind, body, and spirit. Leave the clutter of the world at the door when you enter The Ladies Room, a Greenwood spa run by long-time friends Christy Renée and Christina Glenn. Spend a day indulging in its soaking pools, sauna, steam rooms, massage, and scrubs, carefully designed to give women the space to relax in peace. On the Eastside, book yourself a day at Yuan Spa’s Bellevue or Kirkland locations. Founded by Zhiqin Zhang, who grew up immersed in Eastern ideology and Chinese medicine, Yuan blends Asia’s ancient healing philosophies with Western modern spa technology. Unwind with the meditative ritual of a hot pool, cold pool, salt bar, eucalyptus steam room, cold drench shower, and cedar sauna. 

Experience the hydrotherapy pool at Yuan Spa.

Photo from Yuan Spa

The eucalyptus steam room at Yuan Spa.

Photo from Yuan Spa


Explore exhibits dedicated to powerful women in Washington: During the month of March (and for a few months after), galleries across Washington are honoring women through photography, paintings, and many other forms of art. Take a peek and get inspired by women across time. 

Through May 20, the Washington State History Museum in Tacoma hosts the “Matriarch” exhibit. The photography exhibition commemorates Indigenous women in the Pacific Northwest who are fighting for our collective future.  

Check out the Pacific Science Center’s “Science for Everyone” exhibit, featuring 3D printed sculptures of Washington women making notable achievements in STEM. 

Visit Jaune Quick-to-See Smith’s “Memory Map” exhibit at SAM, showing through May 12. A citizen of the Salish and Kootenai Nation, Smith uses innovative approaches to art conceptualized through a Native lens to explore social justice, sustainability, land, and the boundaries of contemporary American art. 

Head to Vancouver, Wash., and check out Clark County Historical Museum’s “Her(Story)” exhibit, which celebrates the impact women have had on Clark County throughout history. While you’re in town, pay a visit to the numerous public statues around Vancouver that commemorate notable women in the area, including Pioneer Mother, Moon Girl, and Wendy Rose. 

Pacific Science Center’s ‘Science for Everyone’ exhibit.

The Clark County Historical Museum in Vancouver, Wash.

The Wendy Rose sculpture commemorates the women workers of Kaiser Shipyards in Vancouver, Wash.

Photo from Visit Vancouver


Learn a new craft with women artists: Get your imagination flowing by learning a new craft from brilliantly creative women. Spend a flower-filled day with Candice Szarzec at The Petal and the Stem, who hosts bouquet arranging classes on the third Saturday of the month. If you’d prefer to let your hands take the lead, book a ceramic making class at the Salish Sea Ceramic Studio in Everett, a light-flooded space inspired by the natural world. Join teachers Rachel Recker and Payten Raye, as you learn to mold, shape, and create with clay and glazes. Aspiring painters may want to take a class at Burkhead Art Center in Snohomish, where Joanne Schoener-Scott teaches acrylics painting on Thursdays. 

A bouquet arranging class at The Petal and the Stem.

Photo from The Petal and the Stem

In Everett, Salish Sea Ceramic Studio is an inspiring place to work with clay.

Photo from Salish Sea Ceramic Studio

Burkhead Art Center in Snohomish offers diverse art classes, from painting to welding and jewelry making.

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