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Downtown Seattle Tips (45)

Go for an punk bike ride

Seattle has a thriving alternative Bicycle scene, which includes several regularly scheduled rides:

Every Thursday (rain or shine) a group departs from Westlake Square downtown at 7:00PM. This ride attracts anywhere from 5 to 50 people. The itinerary often includes local Bars, and may continue long in to the night.

The last friday of Every month, Critical mass Departs Westlake square at 5:30PM. This is a much larger, louder ride, that tends to take over entire streets. In the summer, hundreds of people attend.

If you didn't bring your bike, post a request to one of the local online forums; Often you can borrow a bike for free!

jobyl's Profile Photo
Dec 19, 2005

It All Happens Downtown

Seattle has the best urban core on the Pacific Coast. San Diego's is small potatoes. LA's is dangerous and dirty. San Francisco's is overwhelming and spread out, Portland's is too small. Of course, I'm prejudice in favor of my adopted home town.

I am an urban boy - I love cities. I grew up in the 'burbs and I've spent much of my time commuting. Even now, I live in a quiet neighborhood northwest of Downtown. But I don't like being more the 10 minutes away from the heart of the city.

The cultural soul of downtown Seattle is The Pike Place Public Market. DON"T MISS IT. Stand among the fish mongers and vegetable sellers and you are seeing the heart of Seattle life, culture, and values. It's ethnically diverse, economically integrated, historically significant, and architecturally interesting. This is the one place you MUST see in Seattle. It is the oldest and largest continually operating farmer's market in the U.S.

I also enjoy concerts at Benaroya Hall, shopping at the Nordstrom flagship store (I'm a regular here - with my personal shopper), Pacific Place, 5th Avenue stores, Westlake Center, Macy's, (the former Bon Marche) and our most recent addition: the specatular new Central Library. If you love books and architecture - don't pass it by.

Johnscarroll's Profile Photo
Aug 20, 2005

Best View of Downtown Seattle

The 73rd observation floor of the Bank of America building is the best value for getting the best view of downtown Seattle. At $5 or $6 per adult it's a bargain compared to the Space Needle; student and senior discounts apply.

virtualpatrick's Profile Photo
Jun 20, 2005

Best View of Seattle Skyline

The best view of the Seattle skyline is from Kerry Park on Queen Anne Hill. You can see the Space Needle contrasting with the city buildings and if you're lucky a clear view of Mt Rainier in the backgroud.

Sunsets are supposedly spectacular as the city buildings basks in the reddish/orange afterglow.

Note: Kerry Park is on Highland Drive between 2nd and 3rd Avenue. If you're walking up Queen Anne Ave to get to Highland Drive, the last 4 blocks is a pretty steep hill so take your time walking.

virtualpatrick's Profile Photo
Jun 20, 2005
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Seattle at Night is a fotog orgy

I think Seattle has one of the better night city skylines around.

You can look north towards the needle, or south towards a night city vista.

Both are very fine.... this view is from Westin south tower facing south into the city

davequ's Profile Photo
Jun 09, 2005

Harbor Steps

The Harbor Steps are located across from the Seattle Art Museum. This is a lovely area with steps, cascading fountains, Japanese maple and flowering cherry trees, and sculpture. Many locals come to this area in the summer for packed lunches or just to read and unwind.

There is also a Harbor Steps Conference Center at this location. Contact details are as follows:

1301 First Avenue, Level A,
Seattle, WA 98101
Tel: 206.654.6040
Harbor Steps Conference Center

wanderlust23's Profile Photo
Jun 08, 2005


Downtown Seattle is filled with funky shops, great restaurants, a nice aquarium and a great view out to Puget Sound. There are some steep hills, so be in good shape for the climbs!

zuriga's Profile Photo
Mar 28, 2005

Space Needle - Southern View

This is the view of Seattle looking south from the Space Needle. The skyline obviously has one of those "New Urban Center" looks where nothing looks older than yesterday...not too many art deco spires here. The look seemed interestingly enhanced by the the steam rising from the buildings. You see, we visited during one of the coldest Januarys on record (lucky us...we're from Buffalo!) and so the combination of early morning light and cold atmosphere set off downtown with a cool bluish sophistication.

tpal's Profile Photo
Mar 11, 2005
joiwatani's Profile Photo


"The famous Space Needle in Seattle"
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jamiesno's Profile Photo


") @ L was great!"
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glabah's Profile Photo


"Emerald City of the Northwest"
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Summer33's Profile Photo


"It's not always raining in Seattle"
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Pikes Market

I could walk around Pikes Market all day. The fish market is what is most known about pikes market. That is something you must see for yourself. I also enjoyed the multitude of 'artist' that downtown - predominantly speaking of the musicians.

Feb 14, 2005

Walking about

Seattle has her little golden nuggets if you take the time to wander around the city, by its efficient buses, monorail or just by foot. There are scultured art forms at some street corners or open spaces.

bobsim's Profile Photo
Sep 27, 2004

General list of things to do in Seattle

Things to do here:
- Day trip to Mt. Rainier if you have a car
- See a Mariners baseball game
- Take the Underground Tour
- Go to the Hiram Chittendam 'Ballard' Locks and watch the salmon migrating upstream through a window in the water, stay for the gardens as well
- Visit Alki and/or Golden Gardens Beaches
- Space Needle and the Seattle Center fountain
- Take a ferry to anywhere (San Juan Islands, if you have more than a weekend)
- Pike Place Market for the freshest fish, flowers, vegetables, and crafts
- The original Starbucks store, opened in 1971 across from Pike Place Market
- Visit the neighborhoods of Fremont, Capitol Hill, and Queen Anne. Fremont is young, vibrant, and full of colorful hippies. Capitol HIll is also you and vibrant, with an eclectic group of people ranging from goths, young professionals, gays, punks, artists, etc. Lower and Upper Queen Anne are a bit more 'grown-up' and have great bars and eateries.

lennywoods's Profile Photo
Sep 10, 2004

Catch the Ferry at Dusk.

You can catch the inner harbour ferry to one of the small island just off Seattle about an hours ride. Apparently its best when you go just before dusk so you can see the sun setting over the Olympic Mountains and then hang out on one of the islands for a quick bite to eat before heading back to Seattle where you can see the whole city lit up at night. Supposed to be real nice. Fairly cheap as well as I think its about $10 US round trip for foot passengers.

tylercdurden2004's Profile Photo
Jun 03, 2004

Things To Do Near Seattle

Things to Do

Elliott Bay Waterfront

Owned by the Port of Seattle (not the regular city of Seattle park system), the park runs through port owned property right along the Seattle waterfront. Combined with the Olympic Sculpture Park and...
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Things to Do

Columbia Center Sky View Observatory

When it was built, the Space Needle was certainly the dominant feature of the Seattle skyline. However, over the past 40 years, many newer and very tall buildings have been built in Seattle. Today,...
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Things to Do


Speaking of successful ventures, it's hard to believe that the mega coffee company Starbucks started out as a small coffee store located at the heart of Pike Place Market. The first store actually...
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Things to Do

Capitol Hill

Capitol Hill (so named by a developer with political aspirations) is the counter culture heart of the Northwest. It's also the most densely populated neighborhood. The streets are lined with midrise...
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Things to Do

Frye Art Museum

Since I was already planning on visiting the Portland Art Museum, I decided to skip the Seattle Art Museum and visit the Frye Art Museum instead. This museum located in the First Hill area first...
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Things to Do

Smith Tower Observation Deck

A historical landmark, the building was the vision of Lyman Cornelius Smith, a New York tycoon, back in 1909. He did not live to see it open in 1914 but his son did. There is an observation deck you...
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Getting to Seattle


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