Things to do in Seattle
Searching for things to do in Seattle? Browse Travel + Leisure’s guide, which spotlights the scenic Washington city’s top attractions and activities, from Pioneer Square and Pike Place Market to Capitol Hill and Ballard Avenue. Whether you want to check out Seattle’s underground, stroll Olympic Sculpture Park, take a cruise on Puget Sound, ride the South Lake Union Trolley, or get far out of town and hike Mount Rainier, Travel + Leisure can lead the way.
With a reputation for being caffeinated and anti-establishment, Seattle’s less grungy side is also worth exploring. Some places like Discovery Park, the Seattle Art Museum, the REI flagship store, and the Space Needle need no introduction, but there are plenty of hidden hangouts, local institutions, and things to do in Seattle only insiders know about. Follow the vertical Tiger Mountain Trail for stunning views of Maple Valley and snowy peaks beyond; go for the best burgers and beer in town at King’s Hardware; shop for super-seasonal picnic fixings at University District Farmers Market; imbibe creative cocktails in a former opium den at Fu Kun Wu; or check out the latest in electronic art at McLeod Residence. Read on to find out more great ideas on what to do in Seattle.
Visitors can watch molten glass creations being blown in the Museum of Glass’s (MOG) Hot Shop, a 90-foot stainless steel cone and working studio.
Don't miss this gallery-lounge where you can grab a nightcap and bone up on the latest electronic art.
Craftsmanship is the focus at this elegant, modern bar in a renovated 1920s building. Cocktail aesthetes come for rum swizzles and marmalade sours.
Designated by Congress in 1938, mammoth and mountainous park stretches across rugged Pacific coast and lush interior old-growth forests.
A must-see for every first-time Seattle visitor, this indoor farmers’ market of more than 200 stalls is also a crucial hub for most of the city’s restaurateurs and foodies.
Day-trippers head 25 miles north of Seattle to Whidbey Island, where beaches, nature, and wildlife abound. For panoramic views of the Olympic Mountains and Strait of Juan de Fuca, visit Fort Ebey State Park.
A combination gallery/shop/"culture incubator," Pulp Lab's retail outlet is an offshoot of proprietress Kate Pawlicki's NY-Seattle creative agency.
Since 2001, Jeremy Faber, a trained chef, has been bringing wild foods to Seattle-area farmer’s markets, including the Saturday-morning, University District Farmer’s Market.
Take a 2,000 foot dance floor, add a full bar and restaurant, place them in the Pike/Pine district, and you've got Century Ballroom and Cafe.
Fifty miles from Bellingham on the Canadian border is a picture-postcard Pacific Northwest landscape of sawtooth mountains slung with hammocks of snow.
Instead of beer-soaked concrete and standing-room only, this rock club for grownups offers plush cabaret-style seating in semicircular booths, and a full menu of snacks, entrées, and creative cocktails. With this kind of setup, sight lines are guaranteed, and the acoustics are great.
Although Retrofit Home specializes contemporary home furnishings, the Capitol Hill store also sells transitional and mid-Century modern furniture. Owners Jon Milazzo and Lori Pomeranz stock the shop with everything from chaisse lounges to sectional sofas to daybeds by Blu Dot and Mobiltal.
This Belltown cocktail bar channels a bachelor-pad vibe, with midcentury modern furniture, stone- or tufted-leather feature walls, and eccentric, manly touches like deer-hoof table lamps.
Located along Admiralty Inlet, this 433-acre stretch of land once served as an active army installation and then a juvenile detention facility before opening to the public as a park in 1973.