101 Best Things to Do in Seattle

104 Best Things to Do in Seattle

Last Updated on April 17, 2024 by Kelly

I grew up in the Seattle area, and I love sharing the Emerald City with friends, family, and readers of this blog. Whether it’s strolling through Pike Place Market or ascending the Space Needle, the city offers so many unique experiences. In addition to well-known activities, there are dozens of lesser-known activities that are just as fun. (One example is cruising around Lake Union in a hot tub boat!)

I’ve lived near Seattle most of my life, so this list represents my best tips!

This list will focus on activities exclusively within Seattle’s city limits. I’ve seen a lot of “best things to do in Seattle” lists that include activities hundreds of miles away from the city. In this post, I’ve put together a list of 104 things to do in Seattle to help prepare you for your next trip!

At a Glance

Pike Place Market  Kerry Park  
Gum Wall  Ballard Locks  
International Fountain  Lumen Field  

Starbucks Reserve Roastery & Tasting Room

 Woodland Park Zoo  
Space Needle  Pike Brewing Company  
Chihuly Garden and Glass  Seattle Japanese Garden  
 Pacific Science Center  Moore Coffee Shop  
 Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP)  Pioneer Square  
 Olympic Sculpture Park  Benaroya Hall  
 Jose Rizal Park Victrola Coffee  
The Nest Rooftop Bar  Kubota Garden  
Pier 54 Shops  Gas Works Park  
Seattle Great Wheel  Alki Beach  
Seattle Aquarium  Green Lake Park  
Try Theo Chocolate  T-Mobile Park  
Wings Over Washington  Volunteer Park Conservatory  
Museum of Flight  Shug’s Soda Fountain and Ice Cream  
Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Discovery Center  Mary Oliver McCaw Hall  
Ride the Monorail  5th Avenue Fountain  
Agua Verde Paddle Club  University of Washington Campus  
Westlake Center  Golden Gardens Park  
22. Washington Park Arboretum  Fremont Troll  
Seattle Central Library  Fran’s Chocolates  
Seattle Art Museum  Center for Wooden Boats  
Flatstick Pub  Seattle Meowtropolitan  
Canlis  Add-a-Ball  

Edith Macefield’s House (Up House)

 Seward Park  
UW Planetarium  Reuben’s Brews  
Freeway Park  Bruce Lee Grave Site  
Howe Street Stairs International District  
Discovery Park Dick’s Drive-In  
Smith Tower Burke Museum  
Myrtle Edwards Park Henry Art Gallery  
Off the Rez Cafe Museum of Museums  
Ferry to Bainbridge Island Visit an Art Gallery  
Ma’Ono Fried Chicken Virtual Reality  
Amazon Spheres National Nordic Museum  
Plymouth Pillars Park Northwest African American Museum  
Lenin Statue in Fremont Museum of History & Industry  
Full Tilt Ice Cream and Pinball Arcade Visit a Donut Shop  
P. Patches Statue Seattle Asian Art Museum  
Pinball Museum Rachel’s Ginger Beer  
Bell Street Rooftop Park Seattle Selfie Museum  
Union Station Seattle Seafood  
Duwamish Longhouse and Cultural Center Klondike Gold Rush  
Underground Tour Climate Pledge Arena  
Lincoln Park Hot Tub Boats  
Skyview Observatory Bocce Ball  
Madrona Beach Bowling  
Fremont Canal Park Frye Art Museum  
Magnolia Park Seattle Harbor Cruise  
Seattle Children’s Museum WOW Art Gallery  

The Ultimate List of Things to Do in Seattle

1. Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP)

what to see at the MoPOP

Seattle is known for its musicians. This museum was introduced to Seattle in 2000 as the Experience Music Project. Since then, it has evolved and changed its name to reflect its wider dedication to popular culture, hence the rebranding to the Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP). 

The MoPOP is my husband’s favorite attraction in Seattle. If you like music or film, you’re sure to find something interesting and noteworthy in the museum. 

Disclosure: This post may contain affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

2. Pike Place Market

Whether you’re visiting Seattle for the first time or hundredth time, it’s always fun to go to Pike Place Market. The market is absolutely huge and contains over 500 different vendors. We recommend that you go on a chef-guided food tour of the market!

You can try hundreds of different unique foods at the market that represent countries from all around the world. You can find French pastries, Russian piroshkis, Persian kebobs, Thai curries, Taiwanese hombows, Turkish baklava, Japanese bento, English crumpets, and much, much more.

Our guide to Pike Place Market is one of our most popular posts!

3. Gum Wall

gum wall best things to do in seattle

While you’re at Pike Place Market, be sure to head down to Post Alley beneath the market. That’s where you’ll find the infamous gum wall! When you visit this Seattle landmark, you’ll likely feel a combination of utter disgust and sheer amazement. There is a lot of gum on that wall!

The tradition was started in the early 1990s when patrons would line up and stick their gum on the wall. (It’s no coincidence to me that this happened during the grunge era!) In 2015, workers pressure washed the wall to clean it. Over 2300 pounds of gum was removed! You wouldn’t know it, though, because there is plenty of gum that has collected since then.

To access the gum wall, head to Rachel the Piggy Bank (near the fish market) there is a staircase that goes down to Post Alley. Or, if you stand on the corner of Pike St. and 1st Ave (facing the market sign) the ramp down to Post Alley will be on the left. 

Tip: When you visit, be sure to bring some bubble gum to add to the wall. 

4. Space Needle

Space Needle in Seattle, Washingotn

The Space Needle is the most iconic symbol of Seattle. To get to the Space Needle viewing decks, you’ll take the elevator up over 500 feet. Head to the Space Needle to get one of the best views of Seattle!

The Space Needle underwent a major renovation in 2018. The outdoor viewing deck now has glass walls with glass benches (“skyrisers”) that make for some incredible photos. The Loupe on the lower viewing deck contains the world’s first and only revolving glass floor. You’ll be able to see Seattle underneath your feet! The Space Needle also has a trendy lounge for cocktails, a cafe for drinks and snacks, and a gift shop. 

Before visiting, see our complete guide to seeing the Space Needle.

5. Seattle Aquarium 

What to see at the Seattle Aquarium

The Seattle Aquarium is another great place to visit while in Seattle. (We also think it’s one of the best activities for a rainy day in Seattle!) The majority of the exhibits are indoors, and you’ll get to learn a lot about what’s below the surface of Washington’s waters!

The aquarium is located on Pier 59. It’s within walking distance to a number of Seattle attractions, including Pike Place Market and the ferris wheel. The aquarium has six primary exhibits: Window on Washington Waters, Life on the Edge, Pacific Coral Reef, Birds & Shores, the Underwater Dome, and Marine Mammals. We especially like watching the otters play!

Before heading to the aquarium, see our full post on the Seattle Aquarium.

6. Chihuly Garden and Glass

Space Needle from Chihuly Garden and Glass

Adjacent to the Space Needle, you will find Chihuly Garden and Glass. Dale Chihuly is one of the most famous glass artists in the world, and his studio is based in Washington. At the Chihuly Garden and Glass museum, you’ll find eight different galleries and three Drawing Walls. 

Our personal favorite exhibit is the Glasshouse, which is a 40-foot-tall building that resembles a conservatory. (Pictured above.) Suspended from the ceiling is a large 100-foot-long suspended glass sculpture. 

Outside the museum, you can explore a glass garden. Chihuly’s glass pieces are blended seamlessly into the plant collection. It’s truly a unique experience to walk through this garden of glass!

7. International Fountain

Located at the Seattle Center, the International Fountain was built in 1962 as part of the World’s Fair. The fountain contains 274 water jets and LED lighting. The fountain contains four ‘super shooters’ that blast water 120 feet high into the air. 

There are five different musical shows that accompany the fountain. These include: Welcome to Seattle Center Show, Aaron Copeland’s ‘Billy the Kid,’ Duke Ellington, Beethoven’s 9th Symphony, and a mix from Northwest Rock ‘n Roll legends. The longest show is 12 minutes long.

On a sunny day, you’re likely to see dozens of children and adults try to touch the dome and run away before the jets resume!

See our guide The Best Hotels in Downtown Seattle to help you plan your trip!

8. Seattle Great Wheel

The Seattle Great Wheel

The Seattle Great Wheel is a giant ferris wheel located on Pier 57. It’s the largest observation wheel on the west coast. There are 42 gondolas, one of which is a VIP cabin with a glass bottom floor. Each gondola is fully enclosed, so you can enjoy this attraction even when it rains. 

Travel Tip: If you’re planning a trip to Seattle, consider buying a Seattle CityPASS. You’ll be able to save money if you plan on visiting multiple attractions. 

9. Wings Over Washington

The Wings Over Washington attraction is located near the ferris wheel. After you book your admission tickets, you’ll be strapped into a theater seat and you’ll experience the most state-of-the-art theater in the world. The theater uses 5k cameras, laser projection, surround sound, and more to offer a very realistic look at the geography of Washington State.

10. Olympic Sculpture Park

Olympic Sculpture Park

The Olympic Sculpture Park is a 9-acre waterfront park that is free to the public. The park contains a total of 20 outdoor sculptures that you can enjoy as you walk along the path. Pictured above is Beverly Pepper Perre’s Ventaglio III (1967).

11. Pacific Science Center

Pacific Science Center in Seattle

The Pacific Science Center is an interactive science museum located in Seattle. In addition to a number of engaging exhibits, the Pacific Science Center has a planetarium, laser dome, virtual reality game, and two IMAX theaters.

12. Starbucks Reserve Roastery

A lot of people visit “the original Starbucks” at Pike Place Market, but I would recommend that you instead visit the Starbucks Reserve Roastery. The main reason is because “the original Starbucks” actually isn’t the original Starbucks (it’s the second), and that location tends to be crowded with tourists. It’s really no different than any other Starbucks, so in my opinion it’s not worth the hassle. Instead, I recommend that you visit the Starbucks Reserve Roastery! At the roastery, you can learn all about how Starbucks makes its famous coffee. They offer scheduled tours, and they have an impressive menu. I recommend that you try one of their tasting flights for a truly unique experience!

13. Take an Ice Cream Cruise

Take an Ice Cream Cruise with Seattle Water Tours! The cruise is typically open on weekends and departs from Lake Union Park. The cruise is 45-minutes long and contains a narrated tour. Of course, there’s ice cream and treats for sale on board!

14. Rent a Hot Tub Boat

Looking for a unique activity to do in Seattle? Try renting a hot tub boat on Lake Union! At the time of this writing, it costs $400 to rent the boat for two hours. Each boat can fit up to six people. The boats are easy to navigate with a joystick. Because they have a top speed of 5 miles per hour, you don’t need to have a special boater’s license to rent one. The company will provide you with a dry box for phones and valuables, as well as a portable bluetooth speaker so you can listen to music. Regardless of the season, you’ll be able to enjoy the best views from the lake in style and comfort!

15. Ride the Monorail

The monorail is a convenient method of public transportation downtown, but it’s also fun in-and-of itself as a Seattle attraction. The monorail cruises through the city and is an excellent way to get a lay of the land. It also drives right through the MoPOP! Young children will especially enjoy riding the monorail. Trains depart every 10 minutes, so it’s easy to hop and off. The monorail has two stations: Westlake Center Station (5th Avenue and Pine Street) and the Seattle Center Station (right next to the Space Needle). 

16. Seattle Art Museum

The Seattle Art Museum is a great place to spend a rainy day. Inside, you’ll see a number of art exhibits that will get you thinking and feeling. The museum has special exhibitions dedicated to artists from Native American, Asian American, and Muslim backgrounds. 

17. Seattle Public Library: Central Library

One of the most unique buildings in Seattle is the Seattle Central Library. The building is 11 stories tall and features a glass and steel honeycomb design. The library also features a “Red Floor”, which is colored in 13 shades of red. It’s one of the most photographed areas of the library. Whether or not you plan on sitting down and reading for awhile, walking through the library on a rainy day is worth a visit if you have never been inside before!

18.  Edith Macefield’s House (The Up House)

The Edith Macefield House is commonly known as the Up house of Disney fame. The house belonged to Edith Macefield, who refused to sell the home even after developers offered her increasing amounts of money. Because she would not sell the home, developers built around the house! The home is a symbol of the changing landscape of Seattle. 

19. Sky View Observatory at Columbia Tower

At 933 feet, the Columbia Tower is the tallest skyscraper in the Pacific Northwest. As you’d expect, the tower also holds commanding views of the city. The Sky View Observatory is located 73 stories up the tower. There’s a cafe and a bar at the observatory, so you can definitely grab a cocktail and enjoy the sunset. (Which is when we recommend visiting!) We recommend that you purchase tickets for the Sky View Observatory in advance! 

20. Kerry Park

If you’ve seen a postcard of Seattle, chances are the photo was taken from Kerry Park. It has one of the best views of the city! What I like about this park is that you can clearly see the Space Needle. The Space Needle isn’t as tall as many of the skyscrapers nearby, so you really need to find a viewpoint that has the right angle to see the Space Needle fully. From Kerry Park, you have that perfect viewpoint. On a clear day, you can also see Mount Rainier in the distance. When that happens, it’s pure magic.

21. Woodland Park Zoo

gorillas at the Woodland Park Zoo

One of our favorite things to do in Seattle is visit the Woodland Park Zoo. (We like it so much, we purchased an annual membership!) The zoo has over 900 animals from over 250 distinct species. The animals are grouped by regional habitats. Currently the Woodland Park Zoo has 11 exhibits: Africa Savanna, Assam Rhino Reserve, Australia, Molbak’s Butterfly Garden (temporarily closed for refurbishments), Humboldt Penguin Exhibit, Living Northwest Trail, Temperate Forest, Trail of Adaptations, Tropical Asia, Tropical Rainforest, and Ambassador Animals. We especially like seeing the red panda and the baby gorilla when we visit. 

22. Pike Brewing Company

Pike Brewing Company is located within Pike Place Market. Stop by for some delicious handcrafted beers. They also have a beer museum! You might also want to check their website to see if their brewery tours have resumed. 

23. Paramount Theatre

Paramount Theatre

The Paramount Theatre is where to go to see major musical and theatre productions in Seattle. The theatre has been open since 1928 and is a historic landmark. 

24. Gas Works Park

This park was the former site of the Seattle Gas Light Company’s gasification plant. Many of the original structures were never cleared from the park, so there are a bunch of rusty structures in the center of the park. (Which are fenced off from the public.) It’s a popular spot for photographers because of the industrial vibe!

Gas Works Park is on the National Register of Historic Places. The park is 19 acres and sits on the north shore of Lake Union. Across the lake, you’ll have direct views of the downtown Seattle skyline. A large grassy knoll gives plenty of space for picnics, frisbee, and sunbathing. A sundial at the top of the hill is a popular place for taking photos. We think one of the best views of the city is from the top of the hill.

25. University of Washington Campus

University of Washington in Seattle

I might be biased because I’m an alumna, but the University of Washington has one of the most beautiful campuses you will ever see! I recommend visiting a few places: Suzzallo Library (the old stonework and large cathedral windows will make you feel like you are at Oxford), Drumheller Fountain (on a clear day you can see Mount Rainier behind the fountain), Red Square (centrally located on campus), and the Quad (especially beautiful when the cherry blossoms bloom in the spring). 

26. Golden Gardens Park

This might be the best sandy beach in Seattle. On a clear day, you’ll be able to see across the Puget Sound to the Olympic Mountains. The beach also has volleyball courts, seasonal fire pits, a fishing pierboat launch, and an off-leash area for dogs.

27. Dick’s Drive-In

With multiple locations in the greater Seattle area, you are sure to find a Dick’s Drive-In near you. This burger joint is extremely popular with locals. Dick’s Drive-In has been a Seattle staple since 1954. This to-go service counter (no indoor dining) makes fresh cheeseburgers that are delicious and affordable. I would say that Dick’s Drive-In is to Washington what In-and-Out Burger is to California.

28. Northwest African American Museum

The Northwest African American Museum is dedicated to sharing the stories and histories of African Americans in the Pacific Northwest. The museum is filled with exhibitions that feature visual arts, music, crafts, and literature. 

29. Virtual Reality

Kelly from Our Adventure Journal trying out virtual reality in Seattle

Have you ever tried virtual reality gaming? We just tried it for the first time during a date night, and we had an absolute blast! We recommend that you try Sandbox VR. They have some really unique immersive experiences.

30. Seattle Asian Art Museum

This museum was newly renovated and features artworks and displays that showcase the diversity within Asia. The galleries are arranged by themes, instead of being constricted by geographical region. The museum is located within a beautiful Art Deco building that was built in 1933. 

31. Ballard Locks (Hiram M. Chittenden Locks)

Ballard Locks Hiram M. Chittenden best things to do in Seattle 

The locks in Ballard are a fun place to watch the boats pass through to Lake Union. It’s an impressive sight to see the locks fill with water and then slowly drain the water to let the boats through. There’s a visitor center as well as a fish ladder too. One of the best ways to experience the locks is by taking a narrated cruise through them! 

32. Bill Speidel’s Underground Tour

The underground tour is one of the most popular tours in Seattle. Although I’ve lived here nearly my entire life, I only recently completed the tour and got to look at Seattle’s underground! After the Great Fire of 1889, the city of Seattle was rebuilt on top of the old city. That means that beneath the busy streets of Seattle lies the old storefronts and sidewalks. You’ll learn all about the hidden history of Seattle when you go on this tour.

33. Victrola Coffee

Seattle is known for its coffee, and Victrola sells some of the best coffee in town. If you can only visit a handful of coffee shops in Seattle, make sure that this one is on your list. They were voted as the Best Coffee Shop in Seattle by Travel and Leisure, and they were also rated as one of Food & Wine’s Top Cafes in America. (The only cafe in Seattle to be recognized.)

34. McCaw Hall

McCaw Hall and the Seattle Opera

In 2003, McCaw Hall opened to the public as a renovation of the Seattle Opera House. If you want to watch the Pacific Northwest Ballet or listen to the Seattle Opera, this is the place to go. The auditorium seats 2,900 people. I’ve watched several Seattle Opera shows, and it’s always a great night out on the town.

35. Green Lake Park

Playground at Green Lake Park in Seattle

Green Lake is one of the Seattle’s most popular urban, green spaces. There is a 2.8-mile paved loop around the lake, which is extremely popular for pedestrians and cyclists alike. There are plenty of grassy areas for lounging, as well as sports fields, water rentals, and a playground.

36. 5th Avenue Theatre

5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle

The 5th Avenue Theatre opened in 1926. It is one of Seattle’s most famous landmarks, and it hosts a multitude of theater productions each year. I’ve watched half a dozen productions at the 5th Avenue Theatre, and I’ve enjoyed each one!

37. Fremont Canal Park

A nice place to go for a walk is at Fremont Canal Park. The park is located on the northern side of the Lake Washington Ship Canal. The park is adjacent to the water and has a nice, flat walking path.

38. Burke Museum

The Burke Museum at the University of Washington focuses on natural history and culture. They have exhibits that focus on biology, archaeology and fossils, Northwest Native Art, and contemporary culture. On the first Thursday of each month, admission is free. 

39. Seattle Pinball Museum

The Seattle Pinball Museum contains over 50 pinball machines. It’s open for children 7 years old or older. With a single admission fee, you can then enter and play as many games of pinball as you’d like. At the time of this writing, admission is $20 for an adult and $17 for a child.

40. Seattle Spheres

In the middle of downtown, you will find two giant glass spheres. The Seattle Spheres were built to provide urban office employees a place to connect with nature. The spheres are filled with more than 40,000 plants from over 30 countries. The spheres were funded by Amazon for use for their employees, but they are open to the public on select dates. With a reservation, you can typically visit on the first and third Saturday of each month for free.

41. Paddle Board or Kayak at Lake Union

At the Agua Verde Paddle Club, you can rent stand up paddle boards, two-person kayaks, and single kayaks. I have gone several times, and it’s a really fun way to see the city from a unique perspective! You can choose to paddle toward the houseboats, Gas Works Park, or the UW Arboretum. If you’d don’t have much paddling experience, that’s not a problem at all. You can also book a tour with a guide.

42. Dr. Jose Rizal Park

Dr. Jose Rizal Park is located in the Beacon Hill neighborhood of Seattle. This park is located in the southside of Seattle, so you’ll have a view of the city of Seattle to the north and Elliott Bay to the west. The park is named for Jose Rizal, who is a national hero in the Philippines. Photographers often take photos of traffic going up Interstate-5 and into the city. 

43. The Nest Rooftop Bar

The Nest Rooftop Bar is located within the Thompson Hotel in downtown Seattle. As its name suggests, it’s a bar on the rooftop with stunning views of Elliott Bay and the Olympic Mountains. The bar is surrounded by skyscrapers, so it really feels like you have a bird’s eye view of the city. The Nest is also a two-minute walk away from Pike Place Market, so it’s easy to combine both activities in a day. The bar is open for adults 21 and over, and it’s closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. It’s a very popular bar with limited space, so reservations are strongly encouraged. 

44. Pier 54 

On Pier 54, you can find two notable Seattle businesses: Ivar’s Acres of Clams and Ye Olde Curiosity Shop. Ivar’s is a very popular seafood restaurant in Seattle. The curiosity shop was founded in 1899, so it’s one of Seattle’s oldest businesses. The shop sells souvenirs and unique gifts.

45. Museum of Flight

The Museum of Flight is one of the largest aviation museums in the world. There are a variety of aircraft and spacecraft for viewing at this museum. Learn about untold stories of World War II, see aircrafts from the 1930s, and see a contemporary duplicate of the Sputnik 1 satellite.

46. Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Discovery Center

At the Discovery Center, there are numerous exhibits worth exploring. The exhibits address topics such as global challenges and fighting disease. 

47. Westlake Center

Westlake Center is where to go for shopping in Seattle. There are 17 stores in the center itself, and dozens more within walking distance. Underneath Westlake Center is also a light rail stop.

48. Washington Park Arboretum

Located along the shores of Lake Washington, the Washington Park Arboretum contains 230 acres of plants and wildlife. You can start your visit at the Graham Visitors Center, and then you can take one of the many trails through the woods or along the shore. We especially love visiting during the fall when all of the colors start to change. There’s also a Japanese Garden (requires an entrance fee) located at the south end of the Arboretum. 

49. Flatstick Pub Indoor Mini Golf

Flatstick Pub

Flatstick Pub has a 9-hole, indoor mini golf course. We just went to their South Lake Union location, and they have some of the most creative miniature golf courses I have ever seen! After 7pm, they are open for adults 21 years and over only. They have a full bar, so grab a pint and play some golf. It makes for a fun date night!

50. Fine Dining at Canlis

Canlis is Seattle’s most well-known fine-dining restaurant. The restaurant has been a Seattle icon and has been serving the people of the city, as well as visitors, for over 70 years. The restaurant has received multiple James Beard awards and nominations. Their menu is outstanding, and they have one of the best wine lists in the world. Their restaurant also has some of the best views of the city, so you are really getting the best of everything when you dine at Canlis.

51. Planetarium at the University of Washington

The planetarium was built in 1994 and contains a 30 foot diameter dome that depicts the night sky. It has undergone several renovations which have resulted in an 8-million pixel digital display. The planetarium is open to small groups typically on the first Friday of each month. The shows are free, but reservations must be made in advance.

52. Freeway Park

The Jim Ellis Freeway Park is the first park that was built over a freeway. It sits above Interstate-5 and features a series of linked plazas.

53. Howe Street Stairs

Seattle’s longest staircase contains 388 steps. San Francisco is known for its hills, but truth be told, Seattle is a very hilly city itself! If you’re looking for a good workout, see if you can complete all of the steps.

54. Discovery Park

Woman at Discovery Park in Seattle

Our favorite park in Seattle is Discovery Park. (It’s where we got engaged!) There are tons of trails to explore, and there’s also a lower beach with a lighthouse. We just recommend that you exercise caution at the top of the bluffs. (If you have small children, don’t let them near the edge.) The lighthouse is located in the lower section of the park by the beach. 

55. Smith Tower

The Smith Tower in Seattle (Rainy Day Activity)

Built in 1914, Smith Tower was the first skyscraper erected in Seattle. For many years, it was the tallest building west of the Mississippi River. Near the top of the Smith Tower is an outdoor observation deck and indoor bar. The bar has a swanky 1920s vibe and it feels like you’re visiting a speakeasy. When we last visited the Smith Tower, we caught the sunset over the city and it was one of our favorite views of all time. 

56. Myrtle Edwards Park

Myrtle Edwards Park is located within walking distance of the Space Needle. (About a mile long walk.) I like Myrtle Edwards Park because it has great views of Mount Rainier on a clear day. It’s also closer to the downtown area, so it’s more accessible if you’re planning on doing a day of sightseeing in Seattle. The park has a 1.25 mile trail for pedestrians and bicyclists that winds along Elliott Bay. The beach itself is more of a rocky one.

57. Off the Rez Cafe

Off the Rez Cafe is Seattle’s first native food truck and cafe. (See their website to find both locations!) They specialize in Blackfeet frybread recipes and Indian tacos. Try their BBQ Pulled Pork Indian Taco or the Sweet Frybread.

58. Visit the Ferry Terminal

best views of Seattle ferry from Bainbridge Island

One year for my birthday, my husband planned a day date on Bainbridge Island. The island is located just across the bay from Seattle, yet I had never visited before! We spent an amazing day visiting various parks and restaurants on the island. One of my favorite parts, though, was the trip on the ferry itself! Once you depart the ferry terminal in downtown Seattle, you get a gorgeous view of the city. It’s a view you can only really get from the water! 

59. Ma’Ono Fried Chicken

Ma'Ono Fried Chicken in Seattle

The best fried chicken sandwich we have ever had was at Ma’Ono Fried Chicken. This fried chicken joint is a counter tucked away within Rachel’s Ginger Beer. Their fried chicken sandwich incorporates Hawaiian flavors. They use a King’s Hawaiian bun with daikon pickles, kewpie mayo, and iceberg lettuce.

60. Plymouth Pillars Park

This park is a located on half an acre within downtown Seattle. In the center of the park stand four large pillars. The pillars were created in 1911 and were gifted from Plymouth Church after they rebuilt their church due to earthquake damage. This park now has benches and an off-leash dog area.

61. Statue of Lenin

Located in the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle, you can find a 16 foot bronze statue of Vladimir Lenin. It was originally displayed in the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic in 1988. However, after the Velvet Revolution, it was bought by an American who found it in a scrapyard. The statue is currently privately owned and on private property. The statue is often “dressed up” on holidays and it’s occasionally vandalized.

62. Full Tilt Ice Cream and Pinball Arcade

Full Tilt is a fun place to enjoy ice cream, drink beer, enjoy live music, and play pinball. It’s a one-stop shop for a fun evening out! In addition to their many ice cream flavors, they also offer several vegan flavors and sorbets. 

63. J.P. Patches Statue

The J.P. Patches Show premiered in 1958 and was based in Seattle, Washington. The statue was funded in large part by fan donations. The statue was unveiled in 2008. 

64. Bell Street Pier Rooftop Deck

Not a lot of people know about the view from Bell Street Pier Rooftop Deck. Although it’s within walking distance from Pike Place Market and the Seattle Aquarium, few people wander up to Pier 66 to look around. To access the deck, just find the large staircase near the restaurant Anthony’s. Once on the deck, you’ll have a clear view of the Seattle skyline and waterfront! 

65. Union Station

Seattle’s Union Station was completed in 1911. When it was built, it served as a train station. Currently, trains no longer pass through this station. Instead, it’s the headquarters of Sound Transit. If you have time to visit, the lobby has much of the grandeur of its opening days. 

66. Duwamish Longhouse and Cultural Center

The Duwamish Longhouse and Cultural Center hosts a number of educational and community events. At the time of this writing, the current exhibit is Spirit Returns 2.0.  The exhibit addresses the complex stories between the Duwamish tribe and the white settlers that arrived to the Seattle area.

67. Lincoln Park

Lincoln Park is a gorgeous green space located in West Seattle. It’s right next to the Fauntleroy Terminal to go to Vashon Island. The park has 4.6 miles of walking paths, five picnic shelters, and even an outdoor heated saltwater pool! (Which I would definitely recommend over swimming in the freezing cold waters of the Puget Sound.) There’s a lovely path that runs right along the beach. You can step off at various points to walk down to the water.

68. Seattle Children’s Museum

The Neighborhood at the Seattle Children's Museum
We really loved The Neighborhood section

The Seattle Children’s Museum has plenty of exhibits to keep young children occupied. We especially enjoyed the Post Office, Theatre, and Grocery Store for immersive play opportunities. See our full review of the Seattle Children’s Museum for lots of photos!

69. Magnolia Park

Magnolia Park sits on a bluff overlooking the water in the Magnolia neighborhood of Seattle. The park has a truly spectacular view of the Puget Sound.

70. Lumen Field

Lumen Field is the home of the Seahawks football team and the Sounders soccer team. If you can attend a game or a match there, you should! Fans have twice held the Guinness World Record for loudest crowd roar. Check their website to see when the stadium tours might resume. 

71. Seattle Japanese Garden

Located within the Washington Park Arboretum is the Seattle Japanese Garden. This garden is 3.5 acres and a peaceful escape from the city. Check their website to see when their tea ceremonies might resume.

72. Moore Coffee Shop

What started as a tiny coffee shop quickly expanded into three locations due to its popularity. If you want to take photos of some seriously-Instagrammable cups of coffee, head to the Moore Coffee Shop. Their latte art is out of this world. We recommend that you also stay for breakfast. They are famous for their breakfast waffles. Their location on 2nd Ave is open Thursday through Sunday.

73. Pioneer Square

The historic Pioneer Square was Seattle’s first neighborhood. It’s one of the cultural hubs of the city. On the first Thursday of every month, an art walk is held there. The neighborhood is known for its nightlife, unique shops, and delicious restaurants. 

74. Benaroya Hall

Check out the Seattle Symphony at Benaroya Hall. In addition to outstanding musical events, the hall itself is beautiful. Dale Chihuly himself created two large glass “chandeliers” that each weigh three tons. They look like a tornado of blown glass! 

75. Kubota Garden

This 20-acre park has 11 ponds, 2 red bridges, and 140 maple varieties. It’s a beautiful place to visit during the fall. The garden is open every day of the year and has free admission. 

76. T-Mobile Park

T-Mobile Park is the home of the Seattle Mariner’s baseball team. The stadium is perfect for the Seattle weather because it has a retractable roof. On sunny days, the roof is open. And on rainy days, it’s closed. We’ve even seen them close the roof mid-game! 

77. Volunteer Park Conservatory

On a rainy day, head to the indoor botanical gardens at the Volunteer Park Conservatory. The conservatory has been a part of the Capitol Hill neighborhood since 1912. They are currently open Tuesday through Sunday. There is an admission charge, but it is pretty affordable. (At the time of this writing, $4 for an adult and children 12 and under are free.) 

78. Shug’s Soda Fountain & Ice Cream

Sundae from Shug's Soda Fountain
Shug’s Soda Fountain has the best desserts!

Located within Pike Place Market is one of Seattle’s most delicious dessert shops: Shug’s Soda Fountain & Ice Cream. In addition to their ice cream and sundae menu items, they also have an entire portion of their menu dedicated to Ice Cream Cocktails. Try one of their Prosecco Floats!

79. Add-a-Ball

Add-a-Ball is a chill barcade located in the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle. We were last there for my brother’s birthday, and we had a lot of fun playing their old-school arcade games. They have the largest collection of vintage coin operated arcade machines in Seattle. They are open for adults 21 years old and over.

80. Fran’s Chocolates

We first visited the downtown location of Fran’s Chocolates as part of a Seattle Food Tour. We have been longtime fans of their chocolate, but we had never visited their downtown store. We really enjoyed learning about their creation process! Their chocolates are famous. Their coconut gold bars were featured on The Best Thing I Ever Ate, President Obama featured the smoked sea salt caramels in the White House, and Food and Wine featured this chocolate shop as the Best Chocolate in America. 

81. Fremont Troll

How often do you get to see a giant troll under a bridge? When you’re in the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle, you can swing by to see the Fremont Troll. We often bring family and friends who are visiting us to this quirky Seattle attraction. 


82. Center for Wooden Boats

The Center for Wooden Boats is a “living museum” located off of Lake Union. Guests are encouraged to get hands-on experience as they learn about wooden boats. The center offers exhibits, sailing lessons, education, and rentals.

83. Seward Park

Seward Park is located on the Bailey Peninsula on the east side of Seattle (facing towards Mercer Island). The beach is a freshwater beach located along the shores of Lake Washington. It’s another one of Seattle’s largest parks, with over 300 acres to explore.

84. Reuben’s Brews

This is the most awarded brewery in Washington State. At their Taproom location, there is a brewery right in the middle of the tasting room. You’ll be able to see where they brew small batches of beer on-site. 

85. Bruce Lee and Brandon Lee Grave Sites

If you are a fan of either Bruce Lee or Brandon Lee, you may want to head to Capitol Hill to pay your respects at the Lake View Cemetery. Bruce Lee was a legendary martial artist and actor. His son Brandon Lee followed in his footprints as a martial artists and actor. Each year, thousands of people visit their grave sites. 

86. Chinatown-International District

Within Seattle’s International District are three micro-neighborhoods that are centered on Asian culture: Chinatown, Japantown, and Little Saigon. You could easily spend a day exploring the shops and eating at the restaurants. We recommend stopping by Uwajimaya (an Asian grocery store filled with all sorts of snacks and delectables). You can also visit the Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience. Whether you have dim sum or bubble tea, you will have a great experience in the International District!

87. Henry Art Gallery

The Henry Art Gallery is located at the University of Washington campus. The museum focuses predominantly on contemporary art. The James Turrell Skyspace is an interesting permanent installation that focuses entirely on viewing the sky.  

88. Museum of Museums

The Museum of Museums is a contemporary art museum that features a variety of pop-up exhibitions as well as mini-museums. The rooms are bright and colorful. 

89. Seattle’s Meowtropolitan

Ever visit a kitty cafe? Seattle’s Meowtropolitan is the place to go to enjoy the company of cats while having your morning coffee. They help to place many of their cats into loving homes through outreach and education.

90. Attend a Local Event

Check out the local events that are happening in Seattle, which might include festivals or exhibitions. (Check out this Seattle event page for current updates!) Popular festivals include Seafair and Bumbershoot. 

91. National Nordic Museum

The National Nordic Museum is located in the Ballard neighborhood and focuses entirely on Nordic culture. The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday. Current exhibitions at the time of this writing include: Nordic Journeys, Paper Dialogues: The Dragon and Our Stories, and M(other) Tongues: Bodhild and Las Hermanas Iglesias.

92. Museum of History and Industry

The Museum of History and Industry (MOHAI) has a variety of super interesting exhibits. At the time of this writing, exhibits include: Da Vinci – Inventions, Bezos Center for Innovation, Maritime Seattle, and True Northwest: The Seattle Journey.

93. Try the Best Donuts

Seattle has a lot of really amazing donut shops. Raised Doughnuts is all about “raising the bar” for eating donuts. Some of the special donuts they have on their menu at the time of this writing include Caramel Crunch Bar, Vietnamese Coffee, and Chai Mochi.

The Dough Joy donut truck in the Ballard neighborhood makes donuts that are both beautiful and delicious. All their donuts are vegan and entirely plant-based, so you can feel good about eating one, two, or three of them. (Or more, we’re not judging!) They recently received enough funding to open a full-fledged store in Capitol Hill.

The Flour Box is also an award-wining donut spot. Mighty-O Donuts and Top Pot Donuts are also local favorites!

94. Rachel’s Ginger Beer

Rachel's Ginger Beer in Seattle

Rachel’s Ginger Beer is extremely popular in Seattle. They have a variety of flavors of ginger beer, such as their original ginger beer, pink guava, blood orange, and white peach. At t their store, you can buy to-go cups, growlers, soft-serve, and cocktails. 

95. Seattle Selfie Museum

Looking for some vibrant photos for your Instagram feed? Head to the Seattle Selfie Museum. The entire museum is designed with the purpose of creating backdrops for unique photos. We recommend that you purchase your tickets in advance.

96. Try Some of Seattle’s Best Seafood

Seattle is known for its seafood, and there are so many amazing places to try! 

Located in Pike Place Market, Matt’s in the Market is one of Seattle’s most famous restaurants. Their dinner menu features King Salmon, Prime NY Strip, and Seafood Stew. The restaurant also has a unique view of the Pike Place Market sign through its large glass windows. 

Ray’s Boathouse offers the best of Seattle’s seafood along with unbeatable views of the Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains. It’s the perfect spot to go to for a special occasion. They have menu offerings such as Pan Seared Sea Scallops, Dungeness Crab Cakes, and Seared Pacific Northwest Halibut.

Chef Shiro Kashiba created Seattle’s first sushi bar in 1970. Chef Kashiba was trained by the famous Jiro Ono (from the documentary Jiro Dreams of Sushi). Chef Kashiba has been a three-time James Beard Award nominee for Outstanding Chef, and he was recently appointed as an official Goodwill Ambassador of Japanese Cuisine by the Government of Japan. If you love sushi, then you have to visit his signature restaurant: Sushi Kashiba. 

The Crab Pot is located on the pier near the ferris wheel. At this restaurant, you can order large crab boils that are dumped onto the table. It’s a fun group dining idea!

97. Klondike Gold Rush – Seattle Unit

This museum covers Seattle’s history during the gold rush. As a port city, Seattle benefited greatly by the gold rush. The museum has two floors of exhibits as well as several short films.

98. Climate Pledge Arena

The newly constructed Climate Pledge Arena is the home of the Seattle Kraken (men’s hockey) and the Seattle Storm (women’s basketball). The arena replaced the previous Key Area.

99. Frye Art Museum

The Frye Art Museum is located in Seattle’s First Hill neighborhood. The museum features a variety of art exhibits, and the museum frequently hosts gallery talks.

100. Bocce at Rhein Haus

While you enjoy German fare and drink German bier, you can also play bocce at Rhein Haus Seattle. Bocce is an Italian game in which you attempt to throw your balls as close as you can to a smaller ball down the court. You can make reservations at Rhein Haus by requesting a bocce court, or you can walk-in and request a court. Bocce is one of our favorite games! When you pair it with excellent food and drink, it makes for the perfect date night.

101. Go Bowling at the Garage

The Garage is a cool bowling alley and bar located in the First Hill neighborhood. There are 20 bowling lanes and 25 pool tables. They also have an outdoor fire pit and a sports bar. You must be 21 years old or older to enter.

102. WOW Gallery

The WOW Gallery celebrates the Wonder of Women. Their goal is to inspire Black women to find their voice. 

103. Seattle Harbor Cruise with Argosy

One of the most popular ways to see Seattle is to take the Seattle Harbor Cruise. The narrated tour will give you excellent views of the Seattle skyline. You’ll also get views of Elliott Bay, the Olympic Mountains, the Space Needle, and the Great Wheel. One of the best ways to see Seattle is from the water!

104. Seattle Scavenger Hunt

Another great way to see the city is to take the Seattle Scavenger Hunt. This app-led scavenger hunt will take you to picture-perfect destinations throughout the city. It’s a great activity to do with a small group of friends!



I’m really grateful that I’ve gotten to spend so much time in Seattle. I hope this post inspires you to get out and explore all that Seattle has to offer!

Disclaimer: We always strive for content accuracy. Since the time of publishing, travel-related information regarding pricing, schedules, and hours may have changed. Please look up such information directly from each vendor or institution for the most current information.

Hi, I’m Kelly!

After studying abroad in Spain, I became passionate about international travel. Since then, I’ve traveled to 6 continents and 36 states within the United States. When I’m not travel blogging, you can find me hiking, reading books in Spanish, or playing cribbage. I hope my blog inspires you to see the world!