Seattle Travel Guide
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.
Operating in the same spot since 1999, this Madrona pet boutique has built a loyal clientele who return regularly for pup-sitting, grooming, and luxury pet-care products.
Located in Ballard, Portalis Wine Shop and Bar is frequented by Seattle’s most discerning food and wine aficionados, especially right after the nearby open market closes at 3 p.m. on Sundays.
Hidden on quiet Stewart St., this Belltown bar is easy to miss, but the search makes finding it all the sweeter, say devotees. Artisan and classic cocktails are served in an upscale, urbane setting, boasting plenty of polished wood, candlelight and stainless steel.
The challenging (and vertical) trail uphill leads to amazing views of Maple Valley and Mount Rainier beyond.
The Provençal-style castle on 87-acres was built by Washington's second-largest wine producer.
Minglement has been serving Vashon Island’s hale and hearty since 1974. Today the organic food emporium carries an array of local produce, heirloom grains and chocolates, wild-caught seafood, and naturally raised bison, not to mention natural remedies, essential oils, and gift items.
Five years ago, Anna Nasset-Glenn took over ownership of this artisan boutique and longtime Port Townsend institution, where she helps customers find the perfect sparkling bauble or piece of locally made art.
Most treatments at downtown’s Ummelina begin with a foot soak and tea ceremony. Seaweed pedicures are performed in private rooms, where customers are literally tucked into a plush, heated bed (dozing off is not uncommon) while toes are filed, buffed, and polished.
Although it doesn’t get the same hype as the Seattle Art Museum (especially given the SAM’s lavish reopening in early 2007), the Frye’s intimate, off-the-beaten-path cluster of galleries is quietly extraordinary.
Just east of Capitol Lake Park, this downtown coffee shop is home to what many consider the best brew in the city.
Serious collectors of Asian antiques come from far and wide to visit Honeychurch; the shop has a long and vaunted history with origins in Hong Kong’s famous antiques row, Hollywood Road.
Uwajimaya has everything you need to become an Asian chef. The giant grocery store is crammed with over 20,000 delicacies from Japan, China, Korea, Vietnam, Thailand, India, the Philippines, and Indonesia.
Here you can rent bicycles by the hour or day.