If you love outdoors, family fun, music, waterfront views, mountains and green spaces then Seattle is the place, nicknamed the Emerald city for its abundance of nature. Seattle is known as one of the world’s greenest cities and is home to a unique blend of art, culture and nature. It is located on the shore of sparkling Elliott Bay, wedged between Puget Sound and Lake Washington. Seattle was named after a Native American local “Chief Seattle” and its first industry was tree logging. Seattle has been the fastest growing cities in America and almost 7 million people call it home. Seattle has been a hub for thriving exports and technology and is the global headquarter for many big name industries.
Seattle generally has a wet climate and it rains at least 50% of the time on average, with the heaviest rain periods between January and May and between October and December. June to August the weather remains driest and warmest. Temperatures in the summer usually hover around a pleasant 75 and in winter you may see a handful of snow days.
How to get here?
From the Seattle Tacoma International Airport (SeaTac), there are many shuttle buses that can take you to Seattle and elsewhere in the region. The drive to downtown Seattle from Airport takes 20-30 minutes depending on the traffic. There is also Port of Seattle which also runs Sea Tac Airport. All the downtown Seattle is easily accessible from the waterfront. There are buses, taxi, shuttle connections at both piers to get you to Seattle.
Accommodation and Food
Hotels stay pretty much booked during July and August here. Plan far in advance for a summer visit and if you can afford a splurge then get a room with a view. As one of high tech capitals of North America, Seattle has many high end corporate business hotels. If you need plenty of space and don’t want to pay fortune for it then head out from downtown to some of the outlying neighborhoods. There are some inexpensive chain motels too where discount rates are almost always available.
Seattle offers a wide array of dining establishments from which to choose. Organic cuisine, Asian fusion, Italian, Succulent Seafood, Pub grub, Seattle has it all. For brunch you can go to Portage Bay Café and get tasty and deep roster of your choice, all accompanies by steaming mugs of locally roasted Fonte coffee. For lunch and dinner, the options are vast. Many Italian restaurants in Seattle offer gluten free Panini and heirloom tomato salad lunch. You can also enjoy outstanding Italian meals at Tulio, Volterra and La rustica. You can also enjoy Beer, hotdogs, chilly Cheese dogs, nachos and sweets at Century Link Field.
Places to Visit
Pike Place Market
Pike Place Market is considered as the seat of Seattle’s soul. It is located between 1st and Western avenues and Pike and Virginia streets and a short walk from downtown Seattle’s retail and hotel district. It is easy to love the market for its fabulous selection of gourmet ingredients and staples but it is also a great place to enjoy many fantastic eateries serving prepared dishes. There are more than 60 places to eat in the market, including several sit down restaurants in the lower parts of the market and some with expansive views of the waterfront.
The Space Needle is a distinctive structure rising more than 600 ft above Seattle Center. It was built for the 1962 World Expo and now it has become Seattle’s most famous Landmark. You can take the 360 degree view of the mountains, Elliott Bay and all of the Seattle’s neighborhoods. At the ground level you can buy some souvenirs from the gift shop, Space Base. There is Sky City rotating restaurant where every seat provides a unique view. As a matter of fact, you can watch, on the internet, 24×7 live feed of the city from the camera on the top of the Space Needle.
Seattle Art Museum
The Seattle Art Museum in downtown offers an outstanding permanent collection and notable special exhibits. It is one of the foremost cultural institutions in the Pacific Northwest. Photography is permitted in the museum as long as you turn off the flash. The museum has a large collection of modern and classic paintings, sculptures, ceramics etc from various parts of the world including Europe, the Middle East, Africa, America and Asia.
Woodland Park Zoo
This 92 acre award winning zoo is home of more than 1000 animal ambassadors, representing 300 species across the globe. You can see from gorillas, elephants, lions, birds, snakes to penguins flying underwater along a desert coast. Here is world’s first sustainable penguin exhibit using geothermal technology to cool and heat the water. There are some additional facilities also like Rose Garden and Rain Forest Food Pavilion.
Seattle Aquarium is the 9th largest aquarium in the United States and among top 5 paid visitor attractions in the Puget Sound region. It covers the area of 18,000 square feet and its species collection is featured within six major exhibits. It is located at Alaskan Way, pier 59.
Olympic Sculpture Park
Olympic Sculpture Park is located on an industrial site at the water’s edge in Seattle. This new waterfront park gives Seattle residents and visitors the opportunity to experience a variety of sculpture in an outdoor setting, while enjoying the incredible views of the beauty of the Olympic Mountains and Puget Sound. The Admission to the park is absolutely free.
As we have read, Seattle is a city of beauty, art and culture with its walkable Downtown, mountains views, cuisines, wines and off course its stunning natural setting and progressive green thinking attitude. Come to Seattle and experience it yourself.