Features that characterize the best cities in which to live in Washington State are hiking proximity, coffee shops per capita, seafood restaurants per capita, high income and education levels, and accessible employment, according to Movoto. Other criteria used to rate livability include cost of living, crime rates, housing, schools, home values and weather.
Issaquah is a top Washington city to live in, known for its hiking, coffee, seafood, education and high median household income. Kirkland, Bellevue and Mukilteo have high median incomes as well as high average home values. Mercer Island is popular for its quality education system, while Olympia and Richland score for their low costs of living. Redmond is a technology hub with a low average commute and very educated populace. Bellingham also has a short commute and a vast number of amenities and restaurants, as does Seattle.
If raising kids is a priority, the best 10 cities in which to reside in Washington are Maple Valley, Woodinville, Issaquah, Tumwater, Bainbridge Island, Lake Forest Park, Redmond, Newcastle, Mukilteo and Lynden, according to NerdWallet. These towns have award-winning schools, affordable homes and growing and prospering economies. Maple Valley is on the top of the list with access to outdoor recreation in the Cascade Mountains and fresh, local produce available at the farmers market. The schools use nature as their classroom, and the students are active in the community, using their education for solar energy, waste reduction and runoff management projects.