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You may know Seattle for grunge music, the world’s first Starbucks, the Space Needle and Grey’s Anatomy, but the Emerald City has more to offer than just those familiar icons. The Pacific Northwest city boasts great coffee and food, an exciting urban landscape and a scenic natural environment, from lakes to bays, parks, mountains and volcanoes. This list of top things to do is a good starting point to discover everything Seattle has to offer.

Top Things To Do in Seattle - Space Needle





For over 100 years, Pike Place Market, overlooking Elliott Bay, has been the place to come for local produce and artisan goods. The market is very easy to find; just look for the crowds of people and the famous red neon sign. There is an overwhelming number of stalls spread over multiple levels, so plan to spend a decent amount of time browsing, eating, drinking and watching fish be thrown around at the seafood stall (you'll know what we mean when you see this in person). Don’t forget your tote bag to fill with handmade goods, souvenirs, fresh produce and maybe a bouquet of flowers.

Seattle Tourist Attraction - Public Market


While roaming the stalls of fresh, local produce and handmade goods at the markets, you must hop across the road to Beecher’s Handmade Cheese. Since 2003, Beecher’s has been producing and serving the most delicious, authentic, fresh food, free of additives and preservatives. You cannot walk out without trying the “World’s Best” Mac & Cheese, and if you have room for more, add a grilled cheese sandwich and some of their award-winning flagship cheese to take home.


An intriguing and slightly odd tourist attraction, down Post Alley next to Pike Place Market, is The Gum Wall. There isn’t much to do here except stroll between the gum-covered walls, question if the rainbow colours are beautiful or strange and watch the collection grow as other visitors add their gum to the crowded surfaces. The walls started in the 90s, when patrons of the Unexpected Productions theatre would stick their gum to the wall topped with a coin. The walls have been cleared many times, but in the end, there was no stopping what has now become a tradition and top destination in Seattle.

At the start of Post Alley is a hole-in-the-wall coffee shop called Ghost Alley Espresso. We recommend stopping here to grab a cup of coffee before meandering through the Gum Wall and the marketplace.


Kerry Park is a small green space located on Queen Anne Hill, known to have some of the best views of Elliott Bay, the city skyline and the Space Needle.

As this place is incredibly popular yet quite small, it can get crowded with tourists and avid photographers. We visited in the early afternoon on a weekday and had a peaceful park almost to ourselves.


Arguably the most iconic landmark in Seattle is the Space Needle. It was built in 1962 for the World’s Fair along with the theme “The Age of Space”, which is clearly evident in the design. The image of the Space Needle within the city skyline is instantly recognisable. At the Space Needle, you can explore two floors with 360-degree views of Seattle, outdoor decks, cocktail lounges and rotating glass floors.

The Space Needle is located in the Seattle Centre; a hub for events, sports, arts and culture. Within the 74-acre Seattle Centre are museums, stadiums, theatres, gardens, and so much more to explore. Most of these buildings were also constructed as part of the World’s Fair, along with The Space Needle.

Alweg Monorail Seattle

The International Fountain, built in 1995, is a great central location within the garden area. The fountain is a fun place for kids to play, surrounded by lawns perfect for a picnic. These activities may not be as enjoyable in the cooler months, but instead, you can admire the backdrop of the changing Autumn (Fall) leaves.

The Seattle Monorail, or Alweg Monorail, is another fun activity located within Seattle Centre. This transport system was built in Germany, shipped to New York and carried to Seattle by railroad. Alweg Rapid Transit System’s technology is still in use today. However, this Seattle Monorail is the last original Alweg line in the world.

It costs $3.25 USD and has one stop at the Westlake Centre. It’s a quick ride but a fun experience and provides a great view of the streets of Seattle from above.


In each new place, we always recommend trying a food made famous by that location or maybe a signature drink. In Seattle, this is the Seattle Dog. A Seattle Dog is a hot dog with cream cheese, sauteed onions, and sometimes cabbage or sauerkraut, jalapeños, grilled capsicum (peppers) and hot sauce. So to try this famous Seattle Dog, head to Dog in the Park in Westlake Park.

The addition of cream cheese to the hot dog was definitely a winner for us.

Seattle Waterfront


The Seattle waterfront is the shoreline running along Elliott Bay near Downtown Seattle. This waterfront is packed with restaurants, cafes, souvenir shops, activities and beautiful views of the bay and the mountain ranges in the background.

Miner’s Landing at Pier 57 is a packed amusement centre with seafood restaurants, ice cream parlours, arcade games, an indoor carousel, a 4D ride and the Seattle Great Wheel. You can catch the ferries from here or just come to enjoy the sea breeze and the views from the piers and Waterfront Park.


There are plenty of opportunities in the USA to get a coffee at Starbucks. However, only in Seattle can you visit the world’s first Starbucks Store. In 1971, the first Starbucks was opened on the street of Pike Place Market. Nowadays, you get your coffee from that very same shop, but only if you are willing to line up for a decent amount of time.

A 20-minute walk away from the world’s first Starbucks location, you will find the Starbucks Reserve Roastery. This is more than just your average Starbucks café. Here they continue to evolve what Starbucks offers, with some rarer coffees available to try, a range of baked goods and a bar. There was no line outside when we visited, but the inside was packed, so be sure to come early if you want to grab a seat and not wait an extensive amount of time for your order.


When planning our travel destinations, we pin our bucket list of sites to see and recommended places to eat and drink on Google Maps. We are then never lost for ideas when travelling, and can easily share these lists for our friends and family to use too.

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