Seattle: The Space Needle, Pike Place Market, Pioneer Square and Beyond

Located in the State of Washington, Seattle is home to about 3.4 million inhabitants. As one of the most important business cities in the western United States, Seattle hosts many global Fortune 500 companies, such as Amazon, Starbucks or Nordstrom.

Seattle also entices large number of tourists every year with its abundant attractions. The city is surrounded by the Olympic Mountain and Mount Rainier on the west side and by Lake Washington and Puget Sound on the east side. Given its lush green surroundings, it has been nicknamed the “Emerald City”.

As for the weather in Seattle, the best months to visit the city are July and August, since the average temperature during that period is 25°C and the rainy season is gone.

Interested in visiting this dazzling city? Let’s grab a map of Seattle and take a virtual tour of this exciting place.

The skyline of Seattle
The skyline of Seattle (image by michaelrighi)

Main sights:

The Space Needle: The Space Needle was built for the 1962 World’s Fair. It looks like a flying saucer on a tripod and is 605 feet high.  With its unique and breath-taking shape, the Space Needle has becomethe quintessential symbol of Seattle. From the observation deck, you can take in amazing views of the city and the suburban areas. High-powered telescopes will also enable you to take a closer look at the city and its surroundings.

Pike Place Market: Pike Place Market is located in the heart of downtown Seattle. Hundreds of farmers, fishmongers, craftspeople and artists gather to create a vibrant market scene. If you are interested in shopping in Seattle, this is definitely a place you need to go to. To avoid big crowds, visit Pike Place Market on weekday mornings. Pike Place Market also houses a variety of small specialty shops and dozens of well-known Seattle restaurants that serve delicious dishes.

Pioneer Square: Pioneer Square is located in downtown Seattle. It is a must-see place during your Seattle trip. The red-brick Pioneer Square building, one of Seattle’s oldest buildings, is located on the west side of the square, near the waterfront. Once abandoned for many years, the building now houses many art galleries, antique shops and cafes. Do not forget to take a photo of the ornate pergola and the totem pole, which were built more than 100 years ago.

Seattle's Pioneer Square
Seattle’s Pioneer Square (image by Vasenka)

Seattle Central Library: Although some people may not consider libraries to be interesting places to visit while on a trip, the Seattle Central Library is an architectural wonder definitely worth a stop. This $165 million original sculpture made of glass and steel was designed by Rem Koolhass, who was awarded the Pritzker Architecture Prize in 2000 as well as many other awards. It is a community gathering and reading space equipped with state-of-the-art technologies. Make sure to visit the top floor of the library, a 12,000-square foot reading room with a 40-foot glass roof with nice views over downtown Seattle.

The Experience Music Project (EMP): The Experience Music Project (EMP) is worth a visit for its architecture alone. It is located in the Seattle center area and lies directly at the feet of the Space Needle. This massive, multicolored blob was designed by Paul Allen, co-founder of Microsoft. The interactive rooms are one of the most interesting parts of the building. You can play the guitar and the drums, and even enjoy the DJ turntable. You can also record yourself playing or singing and buy the CD in the Jam Studio as a souvenir.

The Olympic Sculpture Park: The Olympic Sculpture Park,located between the waterfront and the Elliott Ave, is 8.5 acres. More than 20 large sculptures are distributed in the Park, including the famous “Eagle”, a 39-foot tall red steel creation. From this area, you can take a direct look at the Olympic Mountain. The Z-shaped Park, which links Belltown, Elliott Ave and the edge of the bay, is filled with art and plants.

Seattle and Puget Sound
Seattle and Puget Sound (image by Wonderlane)

Things to do in Seattle:

Take the ferry to Bainbridge Island: Bainbridge Island is located on the Kitsap Peninsula within the Puget Sound region of Washington State. By taking the ferry in Seattle, you can take in stunning views of both the city and the sound, and reach the island within 35 minutes. Enjoy the romantic and lush environment, go for a walk or stop at the waterfront cafes.

Explore the Olympic Peninsula: The Olympic Peninsula is located east of Seattle, just across Puget Sound. It houses temperate rain forests and abundant vegetation. Make sure to walk along the Cape Flattery Trail. It will take you to the northwestern part of the Continental USA and offers breath-taking views of places such as Tatoosh Island and its red-towered lighthouse or the USA dazzling coast.

Take a Seattle Underground Tour: it is now possible to see the main and first floors of many buildings in the Pioneer Square area that were buried after the Great Seattle Fire in 1889. Now located underground, these used to be the main roads and storefronts of downtown Seattle. Visitors and locals also enjoy the seedy tales of the Seattle’s history.

Discover Mount Rainier National Park: Mount Rainier National Park, located 87 kilometers southeast of Seattle, is 954 km2. In the centre of the National Park, you can admire the magnificence of Mount Rainier’s cone, a gigantic active stratovolcano which is over 14,400 feet high. There are 26 famous glaciers, hundreds of lakes, rivers, streams and thousands of wetlands. The park is also a great place to discover various kinds of animals and plants. Make sure not to miss the “Paradise”, the Park’s most popular destination, which is filled with wildflowers and covered in snow during the winter season.

With its natural surroundings and its vibrant city life, the wonderful model metropolis of Seattle will bring surprise and excitement to your trip.

Majestic Mount Rainier
Majestic Mount Rainier (image by gmeador)

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