Things to do in
Seattle

From the top of the Space Needle to the shores of Puget Sound, this metropolis blends nature with urban.

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Our most recommended things to do in Seattle

Seattle: Space Needle & Chihuly Garden and Glass Ticket

1. Seattle: Space Needle & Chihuly Garden and Glass Ticket

Experience the stunning views of Seattle from the Space Needle with a timed entry ticket. Take a stroll through the imaginative artwork of Dale Chihuly with admission to Chihuly Garden and Glass. Get access to both of these must-see attractions in one day. Exchange your voucher at the Space Needle and enjoy a thrilling 42-second elevator ride with views of the Seattle Center, the Puget Sound, and mountains. Step out on The Loupe, the world’s first and only revolving glass floor, for never-before-seen views of the structure and city. Lean into tilting glass walls on the open-air outdoor observation deck. Float over Seattle on one of 24 angled glass benches perched around the outdoor deck. After taking in the all-new thrilling views at the Space Needle, immerse yourself in a world where curiosity, creativity and color come to life at Chihuly Garden and Glass. Get an insight into the inspiration and influences that drive the work of artist Dale Chihuly. Make your way through the exhibition’s eight interior galleries before heading out to the richly landscaped outdoor garden and glasshouse centerpiece. Be moved as you experience a comprehensive look at Chihuly's most significant work. Enjoy complimentary digital photo downloads and get access to daily gallery talks and live glass demonstrations. Admission includes a complimentary audio tour that you can downloaded to your smartphone.

Seattle: Underground Walking Tour

2. Seattle: Underground Walking Tour

Take this 1-hour journey back in time and allow your guide to take you below the streets of Seattle. Explore over four city blocks of historic Pioneer Square and wander through three underground passageways originally constructed in the 1890's. Learn the historical details leading to the birth of Seattle as it is knows today, and the decision to raise the city streets out of the swampy grounds. See where retaining walls were added alongside the streets and filled to make new roads several feet above where they originally stood.

Seattle: Harbor Cruise with Live Narration

3. Seattle: Harbor Cruise with Live Narration

Admire the beauty of Seattle's vibrant and historic harbor on this narrated cruise. Enjoy the fresh air and a bit of history while taking in all the impressive sights, including the famous Space Needle. Start your tour from the Seattle Central Waterfront and get an impressive and comprehensive look at the city's most beautiful sights. Enjoy a perfect trip for tourists and locals alike and take in views from the outdoor open deck.

Seattle CityPASS®: Save 44% or More at 5 Top Attractions

4. Seattle CityPASS®: Save 44% or More at 5 Top Attractions

The Seattle CityPASS includes admission to 5 of Seattle’s most famous attractions, including Seattle’s world-famous symbol, the Space Needle. Built in 1962 for the World’s Fair, the Space Needle towers over downtown, settling into the skyline with majestic mountains in the background. Other attractions included are the Seattle Aquarium, the Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP), Woodland Park Zoo, Chihuly Gardens and Glass, and Argosy Cruises Harbor Tour. Seattle CityPASS includes admission to: 1. Seattle Space Needle Visit Seattle’s most iconic attraction—the Space Needle—located in the heart of the Seattle Center, originally the site of the 1962 World’s Fair. From the Space Needle’s saucer-shaped observation deck, visitors enjoy views of Puget Sound and the Olympic and Cascade mountain ranges. For those who make the trip to the top after dark, the city’s expanse of shimmering lights is the big draw. 2. Seattle Aquarium Discover playful sea otters, graceful octopuses, luminous moon jellies, and more. Be amazed by the “Window on Washington Waters” - a 120,000-gallon exhibit with daily dive shows. Touch live sea creatures in tide pools. Immerse yourself in the Underwater Dome’s 360-degree view. Take a virtual trip to the tropics in the Pacific Coral Reef exhibit. Learn about the Aquarium’s mission: Inspiring Conservation of the Marine Environment. Plus admission to 3 of the following: 3 Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP) Explore some of the most significant moments in rock music, science fiction, and popular culture with hands-on experiences, iconic artifacts, and award-winning exhibitions featuring luminaries in the fields of music, literature, television, and video games. 4 Woodland Park Zoo Take a global journey at Woodland Park Zoo—a 92-acre oasis teeming with 300+ animal species in lush, spacious settings. Discover the world of gorillas, rhinos, red pandas, lions, birds, reptiles, and more. Meet charismatic ambassador animals at outdoor theater programs. Explore Zoomazium’s indoor nature play space for kids. Experience free-flying butterflies in a seasonal garden and stroll through a 2½-acre Rose Garden. 5 Chihuly Garden & Glass Immerse yourself in a world where curiosity, creativity, and color come to life. Visit the Galleries, ever-changing Glass Garden, and signature Glasshouse, where you’ll be inspired by artist Dale Chihuly’s innovation and passion. Argosy Cruises Harbor Tour Learn about Seattle on this entertaining 1-hour, live-narrated cruise of Elliott Bay and the Seattle Harbor. Take in views of the city skyline, mountains, shipping terminals, and historic neighborhoods. Save 44% or more on prepaid admission to 5 must-see attractions: the Space Needle, the Seattle Aquarium, plus your choice of admission to 3 of the following attractions: Argosy Cruises Harbor Tour, Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP), and Woodland Park Zoo Chihuly Garden and Glass.

Seattle: Pike Place Market Chef-Guided Food Tour

5. Seattle: Pike Place Market Chef-Guided Food Tour

Meet your chef guide and watch cheese being made as you learn about the local dairy industry. Then, head to Beecher's Mac N Cheese and Elleno's yogurt for a tasting. Check out a secret garden that grows food and go to Pike Place Chowder. Discover small business stories like Chukar Cherries and taste several types of chocolate-covered cherries including Seattle's famous Rainier cherry. Learn about bean-to-bar chocolate and where chefs buy their produce, meat, and seafood. This is a unique way to explore Pike Place Market's small businesses and savor the local delicacies. The tour includes 9 different stops with about 15 small bites. In addition to tasting and learning about Pike Place Market, receive a 10% discount card to shop at a partner network.

Seattle Sky View Observatory: Skip-the-line Ticket Options

6. Seattle Sky View Observatory: Skip-the-line Ticket Options

Discover the beauty of Seattle from above.  At nearly 1,000 feet this platform is the tallest public viewing area in the Pacific Northwest and is a perfect panorama to begin your Seattle experience.   Choose between 3 ticket options, where you can upgrade to receive priority entry and exit, receive a credit to spend at the Sky View Café or gift shop, and even enjoy reserved seating with the best view. Plan your itinerary from the vantage point of the observatory. Decide between taking a whirl on the Great Wheel, strolling through Pike Place Market, or journeying to the San Juan Islands. Interact with a touch screen technology to explore destinations, tours, and areas so you can create a virtual itinerary. Overlook the city’s skyscrapers, residential neighborhoods, shipping port, and sports stadiums, then look beyond to the mountains, the sea, and the sky. Be captivated by 360-degree panoramic views including Mt. Rainier, Lake Washington, the Cascade Mountains, Mt. Baker, Elliott Bay, the Olympic Mountains, Puget Sound, the Space Needle and much more.

Seattle: Haunted Walking Ghost Tour

7. Seattle: Haunted Walking Ghost Tour

Dive deep into Seattle’s past to discover why these ghosts still walk their specific haunts. Expect to be spooked, fascinated, and entertained - all at once. Meet some of Seattle’s most infamous ghosts. Listen to the ghost stories that are based on extensive research and on real, verified ghost sightings. Whether you’re in town for vacation, traveling on business, or you live in Seattle and want a fun and surprising night on the town.

Must-See Seattle: City Sightseeing Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

8. Must-See Seattle: City Sightseeing Hop-On Hop-Off Bus Tour

On a sightseeing Seattle bus tour, sit back and relax as the tour takes you to the city's most popular and most important sights. Hop on and hop off at any of the allocated tour stops to explore the sights that interest you the most. As you travel, enjoy panoramic views of the city from the open-top deck on the bus, plus a wonderful audio commentary giving you all the information you need. Hop off at popular landmarks including the Space Needle, one of the cities tallest structures and home to a wonderful observation deck and revolving restaurant. With the Premium Ticket, not only will you have access to all 16 bus stops, but you can enjoy a stunning Scenic Panoramic Tour which gives you completely unrivalled views of the city. This ticket also includes a walking tour in the Pioneer Square Historic District, allowing you to take an intricate look at some of Seattle's fascinating past.  Must See Seattle Route highlights: • Space Needle • Historic Chinatown Gate • Seattle Central Library • Capitol Hill & Jimi Hendrix Statue • Paramount Theatre

Seattle: Tall Ship Harbor Cruise

9. Seattle: Tall Ship Harbor Cruise

Experience the romance of traditional sailing on a schooner sailboat. Relax on the boat's comfortable seats or take in the views from the high perimeter railing. Have the chance to purchase some delicious snacks and drinks while you sail. Hop aboard the schooner 'Bay Lady' and depart from Pier 66 on Seattle's waterfront. Feel the thrill of letting the wind decide the direction of the ship. Admire sights like the Space Needle, Smith Tower, and on clear days, see Mount Rainier's snowy peak. Search for local wildlife like swooping seagulls, frolicking porpoises, and playful harbor seals. Unwind with a drink from the onboard bar or sea if the sailor's life is for you by trying your hand at hoisting the sails. If the conditions are right, go full pirate ship and watch the canons fire.

From Seattle: Mount Rainier Full-Day Tour

10. From Seattle: Mount Rainier Full-Day Tour

Visit Mount Rainier with a professional tour guide and discover all that this national park has to offer on this full-day tour. After meeting in downtown Seattle, hop in a comfortable 22-passenger minibus with large windows, high back seats, and air-conditioning and head straight to the park. Experience old-growth forests, wildflower-filled meadows, and thundering waterfalls on this tour of glacier-clad Mt. Rainier. Hike and walk a little, a lot, or not at all: there are options for all abilities. Enjoy lunch at a Mount Rainier café or buy a picnic lunch along the way. After lunch, visit the interpretive center at Paradise to learn even more about the mountain’s glaciers, plants, and animals. Return to Seattle through pastoral farmlands and memorable Pacific Northwest scenery. Make a final stop at Wapiti Woolies and try the famous huckleberry ice cream.

Frequently asked questions about Seattle

What top attractions are a must-see in Seattle?

Insider tips: Planning a trip to Seattle

The Emerald City is the jewel of the Pacific Northwest and an incredible destination to explore. Filled with one-of-a-kind experiences like the country’s oldest public market, epicenter for the grunge music scene, the birthplace of Starbucks, iconic monuments and arts scene, and outdoor attractions to name a few of the reasons that make Seattle a great destination to visit. Megan Indoe is a Brooklyn based travel enthusiast who shares her adventures with her husband and photographer Scott Herder across their travel channels on social media and their blog, Bobo & Chichi.

What should I do on my first trip to Seattle?

Your first visit to Seattle MUST include Pike Place Market. Forget the Space Needle (you’ll see it plenty from afar) and spend your time eating around the oldest public market in the United States. You can also find the original Starbucks here, you can tell which one it is by the line wrapping out the door. But, we would skip that and instead go to the Starbucks Reserve Roastery in Capitol Hill too!

What are some hidden gems to see in Seattle?

Seattle is full of hidden gems like the Fremont Troll tucked away under a bridge, find quirky museums like the Giant Shoe Museum in the basement level of Pike Place Market, or rent a hot tub boat on Lake Union with some friends for an unforgettable time. Our absolute favorite hidden gem is skipping the Space Needle and heading over to the Smith Tower Observatory instead, which provides a great view of the Space Needle from its outdoor deck.

How much time should I spend in Seattle?

You need at least a weekend in Seattle. Anything less than just isn’t enough time.

What food is Seattle known for?

Seattle has an extraordinary food scene, especially around Pike Place Market where you can join a food tour and sample around the best flavors the market offers. Surprisingly, Pike Place Chowder has won awards for the best New England Chowder beating actual East Coast contestants!

What is the best way to get around Seattle?

We really enjoy getting around Seattle by foot. If you’ve exhausted your steps for the day you can use a Seattle Yellow Cab or ride share app to get around or use the Link Light Rail, which is the local version of a subway and public transportation that’s easy to use and affordable.

What are the best months to visit Seattle?

Seattle is known for being a rainy destination as it rains an average of 150 days a year typically from October through March. While the temperature is pretty mild year-round, the best time of year to visit seattle is the summer which is very comfortable, just bring a light jacket for the evenings or September through October is right past the peak season and still comfortable.

What is neighborhood Pioneer Square known for?

Pioneer Square is one of our favorite neighborhoods and is the birthplace of the city! Here you can find some of the city’s most beautiful architecture and the fascinating underground city. You can join a tour to explore the entire underworld of Seattle and if you’re into spooky things you can join a paranormal tour too as there are several alleged haunted locations including Merchant’s Cafe which has even hosted several paranormal investigation television shows.

What are the best neighborhoods for food? 

The best neighborhood for food depends on what you’re looking for. Pike Place is great for sampling many different options but one of the best neighborhoods for food is Chinatown-International District, home to Seattle’s Asian-American communities.

What are the best neighborhoods for shopping?

Located around 15 minutes from downtown Seattle, the Ballard neighborhood has great weekend flea markets, vintage shops, and a great selection of independent boutiques to browse. Another cool neighborhood to check out for artsy and hip shops is Capitol Hill.

What neighborhood should I stay in when I visit Seattle?

Belltown and the Pike Place Market area are the best centrally located areas to stay in Seattle. You can also stay in First Hill, which is just a slight walk uphill from alot of the exploring you’ll be doing on the trip but provides great views and is still centrally located to many of the best Seattle attractions.

What is the best thing to do in Seattle for couples?

One of the most romantic things you can do in Seattle is rent a house boat on Lake Union and relive the famous rom-com classic, Sleepless in Seattle!

What are the best areas for outdoor activities around Seattle?

The Pacific Northwest really has some of the most beautiful landscape in the United States. If you’re looking for outdoor adventures consider taking the ferry from Seattle to Island Hop. If you’re short on time you can do a quick day trip to Bainbridge Island and if you have extra time you don’t want to miss Vashon Island or Blake Island. Each island has their own outdoor activities and gives you a nice break from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Planning Your Visit

  • CityPass

    The booklet costs $69 (adults) and $49 (children) and allows visitors to choose up to five top Seattle attractions, including the Space Needle, a harbor cruise, and the Chihuly Garden and Glass, for nine consecutive days. You can even skip most lines at the entrance.

  • Space Needle tickets and opening hours

    Purchase tickets online and choose the day and time to view Seattle's amazing cityscape. The cost for adults is $18 and $11 for kids aged 4-12. The Space Needle Observation Deck is open daily from 8 am - 12 midnight..

  • How do I get to the Seattle Premium Outlet Mall?

    The outlet mall is 30 minutes north of the city. Take Interstate 105 to 116th St. NE, then west on Quil Ceda Blvd. The mall is open Monday - Saturday from 10:00AM-9:00PM; Sundays from 10:00AM-7:00PM.

  • Chihuly Garden and Glass

    The exhibition is open daily Monday - Thursday from 10:00AM-9:00PM; Friday - Sunday from 8:00AM-10:00PM. Admission costs $23 (adult). It's also possible to purchase a ticket that combines a trip to the Space Needle Observation Deck for $33. Book tickets in advance online and select the date and time to visit the two locations.

Good to know

  • Language
    English
  • Currency
    USD ($)
  • Time Zone
    UTC (-08:00)
  • Country Code
    +1
  • Best time to visit
    Summer is peak season, so delay your visit to September through November, when you'll still enjoy good weather, but fewer crowds. Just remember, the light drizzle is ever-present!

Other Sightseeing Options in Seattle

Want to discover all there is to do in Seattle? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Seattle

Overall rating

4.7 / 5

based on 848 reviews

We had a lot of fun. The story was engaging and it even got two teenagers excited to get to the end. Customer service was terrific, and when we were stumped on one clue and reached out for help, we were directed to a hint within a minute of requesting. I definitely will do this again in other cities that we visit - and maybe even at home.

Holly was great! Very knowledgeable and patient! I would recommend this tour! I would also recommend giving returning tour patrons 10% off at the locations after the tour. We actually went back to 2 of the 3 stops for breakfast in the upcoming days.

I learned a great deal about the early history of Seattle, why the underground structure remains and the role it played.

If you’re first time in Seattle, you must try this❤️

Iconic Seattle by experience with an easy check in.