Are you visiting Seattle, Washington for the first time? Below is a list of “Insider Tips” for things to see and do in the Emerald City.
- Visit Seattle Center – Space Needle, EMP and Pacific Science Center
- Ride a ferry
- Stay in a downtown hotel
- Ride the monorail, walk around the city from Westlake Park to Pioneer Square to the Olympic Sculpture Park along the waterfront
- Walk through Pike Place Market, meet local farmers and artists
- Check out Golden Gardens, Woodinville Wine Country
- See Seattle from above, take a Seattle heli-tour (sight see via helicopter) or Kenmore Air (floatplane tour).
- Walk around Greenlake or on Alki beach
- Shopping on Old Ballard Ave
- Capitol Hill bars
- Experience live music and theater
- Enjoy a good cup of coffee
- Take a tour – Savor Seattle Food Tours, Evergreen Escapes, Tours Northwest, Ride the Ducks
First time visitors to Seattle
When I have a visitor from out of town, I take them to: Pike Place Market, Space Needle, Kerry Park, Gas Works Park and Woodinville. Ballard and Capitol Hill for shopping and dining.
Looking for a quiet place to relax? Check out one of the many parks in Seattle:
- Olympic Sculpture Park along the waterfront
- Discovery Park in Magnolia
- Gasworks Park
- Alki Beach
Don’t miss a visit to Seattle Center (Space Needle, EMP Museum & Pacific Science Center) if you have kids traveling with you.
Seattle Food Scene:
If you are looking for typical Seattle cuisine, I recommend seafood (Salmon, Oysters, mussels, clams and geoducks)
Looking for cheap food in Seattle? Check out the mobile food trucks or head over to the Pike Place Public Market for fresh produce.
Skillet Street Food
Leilani’s Lumpia Land
Where Ya At Matt
For a high-end, yet quality meal, go to Canlis.
Seeing a lot of coffee shops? Seattle is the birthplace of Starbucks.
Picture taking in Seattle
When you come to Seattle, get your picture taken in front of the Pike Place Market sign near First Avenue.
The best vantage points are taken by walking to the top of Kerry Park on Queen Anne hill or from Gasworks looking at the City over Lake Union or from boat in Elliot Bay.
In Seattle, outdoor enthusiasts will want to:
Hike – Mt. Rainier, Cascade Mountains and many close hikes on the I-90 corridor
Bike – Burke Gilman trail, around Mercer Island, Bainbridge Island
Kayak – Lake Union and Lake Washington
Water ski/wake boarding/ wake surfing – Lake Union and Lake Washington
Seattle is very walkable
Looking for a little exercise? Walk from Westlake Park to Pioneer Square or from downtown Seattle to the Olympic Sculpture Park along the waterfront or from downtown Seattle to Capital Hill.
If you are a museum lover, Seattle’s best museum is Seattle Art Museum (SAM)
Enjoy a night out on the town? For live music – Triple Door or Jazz Alley
Dick’s Drive-In is the spot for late night dining. Be warned – there is no seating and no credit cards are accepted – cash only.
13 Coins Restaurant
If you want to read like a local, The Seattle Times is the city newspaper.
Special Events in Seattle
After a long winter, Seattle locals welcome spring. Opening Day of Boating Season is on the first Saturday in May. Taste Washington is a fun wine and food event held in the springtime.
Bite of Seattle, Seafair and Bumbershoot are some of the summer events taking place in Seattle, Washington.
It’s true that Seattle is famous for their coffee, but did you know that Seattle is known for micro beers and great wine? Plan a visit to Oktoberfest and drive out to Woodinville, Washington in the fall.
Come to Seattle for Holidays in the City in the winter.
What are your favorite things to do in Seattle?
Thanks to Seattle Convention and Visitors Bureau for assistance with this post. Seattle photos, article and YouTube video by Travel Writer Nancy D. Brown.