This is categorically not a guide to the best things to do in Seattle. I only spent one full day and two half days in the city, and at least one of those half days was spent in my hotel bed stricken with a mystery sickness. So, I’m definitely not qualified to write any sort of ‘guide’ to the city. I did, however, really enjoy my visit and I’m here to share the highlights with you.
The Space Needle
I fell deeply and irrevocably in love with the Space Needle as soon as I saw it.
Same as I did with the Chrysler Building, and the Sydney Opera House. I can’t really explain why; something about the gloriously retro design, the colours, and the sheer optimism of the project completely won me over. Obviously the spectacular views from the top help as well…
But every time I got a glimpse of the Needle from the ground it made me a bit giddy.
The EMP Museum shell
Technically I think this is a facade but it looks more like it should be called a shell so I’m calling it a shell.
This is the coolest building exterior – it looks like it should be alive. And when seen from the monorail it’s just a whole other level. We didn’t have time to go in, sadly, but I spent a fair amount of time admiring the panels glinting in the sunshine.
Okay actually just the whole Seattle Center.
This pedestrianised precinct is packed with the coolest stuff. As well as the Space Needle and the EMP Museum it’s the terminus to the monorail (very fun), it’s got a food court, Chihuly Garden and Glass (really wanted to go but couldn’t fit it in), the Pacific Science Centre (ditto) and… the International Fountain.
S and I spent a worryingly long time here watching the fountain go, and watching various people playing the ‘trying to touch the metal without getting wet’ game. It’s more fun in real life than it sounds. And by the number of people who stayed much longer than we did, it’s a popular one, too.
The community garden in Pike Place Market
The market on the whole was a bit busy for me, and once I’d seen the fish being thrown and walked swiftly past the stalls selling lovely handmade things I can’t afford, I was basically done.
Then we found this garden and I could have stayed there all afternoon – this is a garden maintained by community groups around the area, and it grows produce to supply local food banks. There’s also bee hotels, cute places to sit and the most madcap assortment of garden decorations you’ve ever seen. All done with love.
To get there, turn left at the fish being thrown, go round about a bit, down, along, and you’re there. Simple.
You’ve got to love a garden with a sense of humour.
The Underground Tour
I think this appears on everyone’s list of things to do in Seattle, but I heard about it thanks to Ashley and now I know why it’s on everyone’s list. It’s brilliant!
I won’t spoil the contents of the tour but it’s full of just the right amount of history, intrigue, and spookiness.
They even do a late night tour with adult beverages, which sounds like the absolute best idea for a hen party.
Or any party.
The Museum of History & Industry
I’m not gonna lie, I mostly just liked this museum for the giant light up R they have on display.
Because R for Rachel.
Yes I’m five.
Everywhere in Seattle you go, there’s art. From street art…
…to commissioned art on the streets…
Apparently a portion of all development budgets have to go towards public art, which explains a lot (but not all) of it. It gave the city a fun and vaguely whimsical feel, which I enjoyed.
Have you been to Seattle? What did you love about it?