Bellingham is home to American history, Pacific Northwest pioneer stories, and shops with deals that Vancouverites cannot avoid. If you’re up for more than a slingshot trip across the border, consider spending some time in this historic town and learning about its sordid history from the entertaining and lively Good Time Girls and their variety of tours that focus on the area’s gritty past.
Sin & Gin (Summer)
Created (and led by) Marissa McGrath and Sara Holodnick in 2011, the walking tour winds through the back alleys of Bellingham unveiling its seedy saloon-era past. The costumed interpreters play the part as they tell tales of cunning Madames in the old Red Light District. History lessons are intertwined with seedy stories and entertainment from the guides who keep up the theme for entire tour. This tour is offered for $20 in the summer (for those 21+ as it does include a tavern drink at the end) but there is a seasonal fall tour available now with another fitting theme.
Gore & Lore (October)
This one hour walking tour operated by the Good Time Girls runs throughout the month of October in Downtown Bellingham and in Fairhaven.
“Join us for a creepy look into Bellingham’s scariest stories and real life horrors. Along the way we’ll set a while with a few ghosts and ghouls and reveal spine-tingling truths about some of Bellingham’s oldest tales of unsettling hauntings and strange happenings. This tour is not for the gentleman faint of heart, the lady of delicate constitution.”
The Gore & Lore tours are for ages 13+ and are offered Saturday nights in October for $15 ($12 for students with ID) and starts out from the Black Drop Coffeehouse (with a drink included). A 21+ tour is also available on Saturday nights in October for $20 and it ends at Bayou’s Oyster Bar with a stiff drink to liven you up after the terrifying tales told on your walk. Tarot readings are available, by donation, at both locations prior to the tours.
Over in Fairhaven, you can also take a Gore & Lore tour starting out from the indoor courtyard of the Sycamore Square Building. This tour is also 21+ and it takes place on Friday nights in October. Tickets are $20 and they include a drink at the Black Cat afterward.
Downtown Vancouver to Downtown Bellingham is about 80kms and takes about 1 hour in travel time, depending on traffic and the border waits. It’s fascinating to learn about a place that’s so close to us but has its own history and unique identity. Find out more about the Good Time Girls and their seasonal tours by following them on Facebook and Twitter.