To many, Seattle is also known as Emerald City due to the number of parks and greenery that it covers. It’s also known for its prosperous tech industry. Seattle, as a city, has much to offer with its culture, music, lifestyle, and many beautiful attractions. Seattle not only gives you high rise buildings and its technology, but it also offers you the outdoor experience that you’ve always wanted.
If you are visiting for the first time, one of the things to do in Seattle is to visit the Seattle Aquarium. This aquarium consists of more than 380 different kinds of animals and is the ideal place to bring your family, especially your children. Here, you can touch some of the marine animals, get to know more about them from aquarium divers, and visit an underwater dome. Inside the aquarium, you can also see a live exhibit of divers on a daily basis as well as meet the otters and seals that are playing in the outdoor seating areas. Your kids will truly enjoy this one. Another major attraction for you to see and one of the many exciting things to do in Seattle is to go see the Space Needle. It was built in 1962 for the World’s Fair. You can go here and enjoy the serene and picturesque views of Seattle from the top, or simply grab a bite to eat from SkyCity, which is a restaurant at the top of the Space Needle which rotates 360 degrees in 47 minutes.
After visiting the Seattle Aquarium, if you are in the mood to get outdoorsy, one of the best places to visit in Seattle is the Chihuly Garden and Glass. It is very near to the Space Needle and will require just a short walk to get you there. The garden offers 8 spectacular art galleries by the famous Dale Chihuly, who was a brilliant artist. Another one of the great places to visit in Seattle is the Pacific Science Center. People of all ages will enjoy at this science center that is filled with IMAX cinemas and even a Butterfly House. You should also stop by at the one of the largest Ferris Wheels in the US also known as the Seattle Great Wheel. It is open all days of the week and it is suitable for all ages. You will get a splendid view of the city as soon as you reach the top. If you’re a history lover, you should drop by at the Burke Museum of Natural History. On the lower levels of the museum you will see objects and photographs of the cultures of the Northwest Coast, East and Southeast Asia and the Pacific Islands and the top floor consists of natural history such as dinosaur bones. Other things that you need to put on the top of your list of things to do in Seattle are definitely visiting the Fremont Troll, the Gum Wall, the Kubota Garden, and the Ye Olde Curiosity Shop.
Experience Music Project Museum, also known as EMP Museum, is a specialty nonprofit museum that pays homage to modern popular culture. The EMP Museum was founded in 2000 and since then, it has organized more than 100 exhibits, some of which are toured across the United States as well as globally. The museum is also home to various public programs that support all-age events at the venue.
A visit to the Science Fiction and Fantasy Short Film Festival during the winters is amongst the top things to do in Experience Music Project Museum. The festival is held at the Seattle Cinerama Theater in the EMP Museum in collaboration with the Seattle International Film Festival. The 140,000 square feet landmark has various galleries including the Sky Church which offers grand views of the Seattle Center. Immersive activities like Sound Lab and On Stage lets visitors play rock and roll anthems and perform in front of a virtual audience.
Visiting the exhibits is also one of the top things to do in Experience Music Project Museum, as you get to see the largest collection of rare artifacts, personal instruments, and original photographs of Seattle musicians like Jimi Hendrix and Nirvana. Overall, the Experience Music Project Museum offers a unique experience for fans of movies, music, arts, theater, and more.
Woodland Park Zoo is a famous zoological garden in Phinney Ridge area of Seattle. Woodland Park Zoo has received various Best National Exhibit awards over the years and receives more than 1 million visitors annually. The garden is nestled on an area of 92 acres and is home to 1,090 animals, 300 animal species, and more than 60,000 trees, shrubs, herbs, and plant species.
Taking children to Zoomazium is one of the top things to do in Woodland Park Zoo as it offers an interactive space for children with nature exhibits and themed play areas. The African Savanna is another major exhibit in the zoo that offers a look at African culture, balance of conversation between humans and animals, and sightseeing tours of animals indigenous to Africa. The Humboldt Penguin exhibit opened in 2009 and is designed to recreate the natural habitat of penguins of Peru with cliffs and pools.
A tour of the Tropical Asia exhibit is amongst the popular things to do in Woodland Park Zoo. Its tropic theme and outdoor loop houses really make an immersive exhibit with so much nature to explore around you. A family friendly and fun place, the Woodland Park Zoo is a must see when you are in Seattle.
The Museum of Flight is a nonprofit museum that is located in the southern outskirts of Seattle. Museum of Flight is the largest private air and space museum in the world that opened in 1965 and attracts more than 400,000 visitors annually. The museum hosts the largest K12 programs around the globe, and several onsite programs that serve over 140,000 students annually.
One of the best things to do in Museum of Flight is take the onsite programs like Aviation Learning Center and Challenger Learning Center. Not only do they provide great educational and historic value, but they also let you explore the museum in a whole new way. Some of the iconic aircrafts in the history of U.S. aviation are found in this museum including the Lockheed Model 10-E Electra, the first Boeing 747 and the Concorde 214, which is one of just four Concorde planes that are on display outside of Europe.
Amongst the top things to do in Museum of Flight is visiting the Red Barn, which is a historic site and the first Boeing aircraft manufacturing plant in the country. Overall, the Museum of Flight accounts for a great tour that is both educational and entertaining.
Pike Place Market is not just the most popular tourist destination in Seattle, but also one of the top 35 in the world. It is a public market that overlooks the Elliott Bay waterfont and has been operating since August, 1907. As a result, it is one of the oldest public markets in the country that offers visitors and tourists a unique way to explore the rich scene of the local market. The Pike Place Market is visited by more than 10 million people annually, and is recognized as a U.S. Historic district.
One of the top things to do in Pike Place Market is to visit the farmers’ market. The farmers’ market not only features organic and locally produced fruits and vegetables, but also has unique shops of merchants and craftsmen. The market is built along a slope with each level offering a unique view of the district.
Antique shopping is one of the most popular things to in Pike Place Market. You also get to visit unique comic book, collectible, and art shops. Fun for the whole family and light on the wallet, the Pike Place Market is definitely a must visit in Seattle.
The Space Needle is a landmark observation tower in the Pacific Northwest that is known as a symbol of culture and heritage of Seattle. Space Needle was built in 1962 in the Seattle Center and today, it attracts more than 2 million visitors annually. Space Needle is known for its strong structural integrity as it can withstand earthquakes with up to 9.1 magnitude and strong winds.
One of the top things to do in Space Needle is visit the top via the elevator which barely takes more than 40 seconds and gives amazing views of the surrounding Seattle Center area. It is a designated historic landmark of Seattle where you can expect some of the biggest fireworks in the city on the 4th of July and the New Year’s Eve. If you are new to Seattle, the Seattle CityPass ticket will let you explore the Space Needle and other key points of interest around town.
Photography is one of the top things to do in Space Needle thanks to its beautiful setting and central location in town. It is a popular feature in movies and television series shot in Seattle, and is one of the premier family friendly destinations in town.
If you are someone who appreciates art in its truest form, one of the many things to do in Washington is to visit the Chihuly Garden of Glass and experience what Dale Chihuly has to offer with his beautiful glass art. The Glasshouse is built in a color pallet of orange, red, yellow and amber and looks as stunning from the outside as it is on the inside. Here, you will find 8 galleries worth of exhibits where you will see many high resolution photographs. You will also see him working on screen in the IMAX theatres that are available here. One of the best things to do in Chihuly Garden and Glass is to bring your kids here who will enjoy seeing the different varieties of glass sculptures.
You don’t need to worry about your children breaking anything as the museum is very ‘kid friendly. You can easily spend at least 2 hours roaming about the museum and just taking in all the beauty created by glass. There is also a dining area called the Collections Café where you and your loved ones can indulge in a nice meal surrounded by a glass landscape, and if you are interested in buying any gifts or souvenirs, you can visit the Gift Shop which is also a bookstore.
One of the most fascinating things to do in Washington is to visit the Pacific Science Center. This is a place where all ages can enjoy, gain knowledge and also participate in live demonstrations and games. The center offers many demonstrations of insects, dinosaurs, robots, and also the human body.
It is a mixture of science and natural history, and it is a knowledgeable treat for all. Some other things to do in Pacific Science Center are entering the butterfly house where you will see thousands of different kinds of beautiful butterflies flying about. They are mostly attracted to bright colors and will come to you if you are standing completely still. You will also see animal displays that consist of reptiles, amphibians and mammals. The science center is open for all every day of the week and the best time to go is during the morning hours when the crowd is less.
If you are looking for an easy way to get to the science center, you can take the Seattle Center Monorail or get on a Seattle Metrobus. If you and your family want to take a break from the history and science, you can grab a bite at the dining area called Pacific Science Center Café, and you can also purchase gifts and souvenirs from the Pacific Science Center Store.
The Seattle Great Wheel is one of the tallest Ferris wheels in the entire North America. Here, you and your loved ones can enjoy the stunning views of Seattle and get a breath of fresh air from up top. This is truly one of the best things to do in Washington. The Ferris wheel stands near the pier and has a gorgeous view of not only the city, but also the waterfront. The wheel is 175 feet tall. The wheel rotates 3 times and it is a delightful yet relaxing experience.
Some of the things to do in Seattle Great Wheel are that you can get a gondola that accommodates 8 people, so if you are a big group of family or friends, you all can share the gondola. The wheel is safe and suitable for all ages. While you are at the top of the wheel, make sure you bring your cameras fully charged to capture the most picturesque views of the city and also photos with your family and friends to keep as a wonderful memory of your time in Seattle.
No matter how busy the wheel is during the day, you will always get a chance to get your ride on the wheel. One of the best times to get on the wheel is during sunset, where you can see the city and the waterfront while the sun is setting. This can be the perfect setting for even a romantic night with your loved one.
If you are a history lover, visiting the Burke Museum of Natural History would be the best option for you. This museum has so much to offer you with its live exhibits. It is one of the best things to do in Washington, especially if you have children. The museum has 3 exhibitions halls, all with different exhibits. Your kids will definitely enjoy all the dinosaur exhibits and many other world cultural exhibits.
You will find that the museum is rich in culture and knowledge, has a friendly atmosphere and reasonable prices too. If you are lucky, every first Thursday of the month is usually free, so mark your calendars. The museum focuses on the Pacific Northwest and Asia. There are many things to do in Burke Museum of Natural History for young minds to experience and enjoy. The ongoing activities will keep them busy and entertained. The museum is based on a University campus, so you will see many of the university students stopping by here.
There is also a lovely coffee shop that can be enjoyed by all. They will offer you coffee, tea and delightful snacks and the café is surrounded by beautiful French chateau panels which makes you want to stay even longer. However, if you are coming on a bus or a taxi to the museum, make sure you tell the driver you want to go to the Burke Museum, as nobody recognizes it as the Natural History Museum.
If you are visiting Seattle and you haven’t yet seen the Seattle Aquarium, then you haven’t seen anything. This aquarium is the 7th most visited aquarium in the US and it consists of more than 380 different kinds of animals. This is one of the best things to do in Washington with your loved ones. There are many things to do in Seattle Aquarium as you will be given an almost realistic experience of being underwater and get to see and touch different kinds of sea life. You will also be able to talk to the divers who will teach you about each of the different species. You will also find an underwater dome that contains 400,000 gallons of water. When you go inside the aquarium, you can also look at the Window on Washington Waters which is a live exhibit of divers who swim inside 120,000 gallons of water within the exhibit. You can see the otters and seals playing in the outdoor seating areas as well. Other exhibits will let you experience the Pacific Coral Reef by a virtual trip, and not just that, but you will be able to find many exhibits such as the Orca Family, Searching for Sixgills, Life of a Drifter, Puget Sound Fish, Birds and Shores, International NASA Kiosks, Marine Mammals and many others.