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Seattle

116 expert recommended attractions

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Pike Place Market

Downtown 94 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

A cavalcade of noise, smells, personalities, banter and urban theater that's almost London-like in its cosmopolitanism. — Lonely Planet

This bustling, labyrinthine bazaar is a wonderful place to while away a few hours. — Concierge

Home to 100 or so farmers and fishmongers and hundreds of small specialty shops, Pike Place Market is Seattle's number one tourist destination. — Frommer's

Fun, feisty and infinitely appealing, the market has maintained its earthy egalitarianism. — Michelin Guide

One of the nation's largest and oldest public markets, Pike Place Market dates from 1907, when the city issued permits allowing farmers to sell produce from wagons parked at Pike Place. — Fodor's

Museum of Pop Culture

Seattle 94 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

So much is offered in one space, it’s hard to know where to begin. In our opinion, the main features are: 1) Seattle-centric music exhibits that offer glimpses into the life of Jimi... — On the Grid

This multicolored blobular building, a 140,000-square-foot rock-and-roll museum designed by Frank Gehry, is home to the world's largest collection of Jimi Hendrix memorabilia. — Concierge

Recently rebranded as the EMP Museum, this dramatic marriage of super-modern architecture and rock-n-roll history was inaugurated as The Experience Music Project (EMP) in 2000. — Lonely Planet

A museum dedicated to the history and exploration of both popular music and science fiction.  — Atlas Obscura

This museum was born as the Experience Music Project, a grand statement by local billionaire and Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, who wanted a monument to rock and roll. — Travel + Leisure

Olympic Sculpture Park

Belltown 93 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Walk among more than 20 outdoor sculptures by acclaimed artists in this nine-acre waterfront park. Works include “Wake” by Richard Serra and “Eagle” by Alexander Calder. Free admission. — Where

Visitors will be treated to views of Olympic Mountains and Puget Sound as well as of works by Calder, Sierra, Nevelson and Oldenburg. — Michelin Guide

Stare in awe at large-scale works... while taking in gorgeous views of the Puget Sound. — Condé Nast Traveler

This nine-acre waterfront spread is arguably the most gorgeous addition to the Seattle Art Museum (it even outshines the recently renovated main museum, about a mile away). — Travel + Leisure

Hovering over train tracks, in an unlikely oasis between the water and busy Elliott Ave, is the 8.5-acre, $85-million Olympic Sculpture Park. — Lonely Planet

Hiram M. Chittenden Locks

Seattle 93 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Industrial-age marvel; watch the local salmon populations dwindle before your very eyes! — Not For Tourists

Called the Ballard Locks by locals. — Michelin Guide

There's no doubt—there's something intriguing and eerie about seeing two bodies of water, right next to each, at different levels. — Fodor's

Allowing humans and fish alike to migrate from freshwater to saltwater and back again.  — Atlas Obscura

The two locks here link Puget Sound with the Lake Washington Ship Canal, which connects to both Lake Union and Lake Washington. — Frommer's

Space Needle

Seattle 92 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

This iconic Seattle structure was built for the 1962 World's Fair. At the time, it was the tallest building west of the Mississippi. — Concierge

Today the Space Needle is the quintessential symbol of Seattle, and at 520 feet above ground level, its observation deck provides superb views of the city and its surroundings. — Frommer's

This "U.F.O. saucer on a stick" is an atomic age baby, dating back to the 1962 World's Fair. If you're lucky enough to catch the city's iconic symbol on a sunny day, take the 41-second... — Afar Magazine

As New York has the Empire State Building and Paris has the Eiffel Tower, Seattle has the Space Needle. — Travel + Leisure

Over 50 years old, Seattle's most iconic building is as quirky and beloved as ever. — Fodor's

Seattle Art Museum

Seattle 90 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Seattle's museum trifecta—the downtown Seattle Art Museum, the Seattle Asian Art Museum, and the Olympic Sculpture Park—could keep even the most ardent museum lover busy for days. If you... — Afar Magazine

Highlights SAM's permanent collection surveys American, Asian, Native American, African, Oceanic, and pre-Columbian art. — Fodor's

While not comparable with the big guns in New York and Chicago, Seattle Art Museum (SAM) is no slouch and is constantly updating. — Lonely Planet

Extensive permanent holdings. — Michelin Guide

Located in the heart of Downtown, the SAM’s installations and special exhibitions sit at the center of Seattle’s creative expression and energy, boasting a lot of heritage and PNW... — On the Grid

Seattle Aquarium

Downtown 89 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Filled with more than 400 species of marine life, the aquarium is home to river and sea otters, harbor seals and the largest species of octopus in the world. Be sure to visit Window on... — Where

Jellyfish and stuff. — Not For Tourists

If you are anything like us, zoos and animal parks tend to make you cringe. So we tread lightly when it comes to supporting a place like this in the city. BUT… By all accounts, Seattle... — On the Grid

Located right at the water's edge, the Seattle Aquarium is one of the nation's premier aquariums. — Fodor's

The aquarium – situated on Pier 59 in an attractive wooden building – is probably the most interesting site on the waterfront. — Lonely Planet

The Museum of Flight

Seattle 88 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Interactive exhibits re-create the adventure of flight. — Michelin Guide

This facility at Boeing Field houses one of the city's best museums, and it's especially fun for kids, who can climb in many of the aircraft and pretend to fly. — Fodor's

Houses within its six-story glass-and-steel building some of history's most famous planes. — Frommer's

The Museum of Flight is located on an airport runway, as is only proper. And from the front door, visitors can see private planes, small commercial flights, and test models take off from... — Travel + Leisure

Experience the history of flight from the beginning among more than 85 airplanes, including the rare Blackbird/Drone spy plane and the country’s first presidential jet. Don’t miss the... — Where

Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience

Seattle 88 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

"The Asian Pacific American Experience," traces... distinctive aspects that make each of these cultures unique. — Michelin Guide

Relocated and refurbished in 2008, the Wing Luke examines Asian and Pacific American culture, focusing on prickly issues such as Chinese settlement in the 1880s. — Lonely Planet

The Wing Luke Museum has many rotating exhibitions featuring Asian American artists as well as historical relics unique to Seattle. Be sure to catch the hourly tour of the old preserved... — On the Grid

This gorgeous museum provides a sophisticated and often somber look at how immigrants and their descendants have transformed (and been transformed by) American culture. — Fodor's

This small museum has exhibits that explore the roles various Asian cultures have played in the settlement and development of the region. — Frommer's

Gas Works Park

Lake Union 87 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Compelling mixture of industrial artifacts and parkland... wide-angle views of the Seattle cityscape. — Michelin Guide

What could have been forgotten as an industrial wasteland on the north end of Lake Union was turned into a well-loved park in the 1970s. Though some rusting remains of a manufacturing... — Travel + Leisure

Urban reclamation has no greater monument in Seattle than Gas Works Park. The former power station here produced gas for heating and lighting from 1906 to 1956. — Lonely Planet

The rust-red towers on this 19-acre park on Lake Union look like leftovers from a Mad Max movie, or a relic from a civilization past. — Condé Nast Traveler

The park gets its name from the hulking remains of an old 1907 gas plant, which, far from being an eyesore, actually lends quirky character to the otherwise open, hilly, 20-acre park. — Fodor's

Washington Park Arboretum

Broadway / Capitol Hill 87 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

This wild and lovely park offers a wide variety of gardens, a wetlands nature trail and 200 acres of mature forest threaded by paths. — Lonely Planet

A haven for tree-huggers, bird-watchers, and botanists. — Not For Tourists

Trails lace the preserve, winding past... trees, flowers and other plants, past a Japanese garden and through a rhododendron glen, a rock garden and an avenue of azaleas. — Michelin Guide

As far as Seattle's green spaces go, this 230-acre arboretum is arguably the most beautiful. — Fodor's

Picturesque trails wind through this 230-acre expanse. The Arboretum is home to a Japanese garden, which compresses mountains, forests and rivers into a beautiful mini-environment. The... — Where

Chihuly Garden and Glass

Seattle 86 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Just steps from the base of the Space Needle, Chihuly Garden and Glass is a magnificent addition to Seattle Center. — Fodor's

This Pacific Northwest phenomenon is almost a household name, primarily because of his enormous and enormously intricate glass chandeliers. — Frommer's

Located at the foot of the Space Needle, Chihuly Garden and Glass is Dale Chihuly’s permanent exhibition space featuring the pieces, inspirations and influences that shaped this talented... — Where

Dale Chihuly is one of the Northwest's best-known artists, with his otherworldly glass sculptures gracing public buildings and private collections. — Travel + Leisure

I didn't expect to like the Chihuly Garden and Glass exhibit, because it seemed like yet another overpriced Seattle attraction. But I was pleasantly surprised by this colorful,... — Afar Magazine

Henry Art Gallery

University District 85 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Expect the unexpected here -- and prepare to be challenged in your concept of what constitutes art. — Frommer's

One of the Northwest’s leading museums of modern and contemporary art, the Henry presents visually and conceptually challenging artists. Wed. 11 am-4 pm; Thu. and Fri. 11 am-9 pm; Sat.... — Where

At the corner of NE 41st St and 15th Ave is a sophisticated space centered on a remarkable permanent exhibit by light-manipulating sculptor James Turrell. — Lonely Planet

The Henry is perhaps the best reason to take a side trip to the U-District. — Fodor's

The Henry (1927, Carl Gould) is known for encouraging and exhibiting cutting-edge art. — Michelin Guide

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Frye Art Museum

Seattle 85 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

The collection focuses on late-19th-century and early-20th-century representational art by European and American painters. — Frommer's

This small museum on First Hill preserves the collection of Charles and Emma Frye. — Lonely Planet

More like an overgrown gallery space than a museum, it's free and you can comfortably ponder all of its works in an hour. — Concierge

The Frye’s intimate, off-the-beaten-path cluster of galleries is quietly extraordinary. — Travel + Leisure

Charles and Emma Frye, who came to Seattle in 1888, collected 19th- and 20th-century European and American paintings, the basis for this museum. Museum hours Tue.-Sun., 11 am-5 pm; Thu.... — Where

Nordic Heritage Museum

Ballard 85 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Housed in a former school building, this is primarily a neighborhood museum focusing on the experiences of Scandinavian immigrants in Seattle's Ballard neighborhood. — Frommer's

This museum preserves the history of the northern Europeans who settled in Ballard and the Pacific Northwest. — Lonely Planet

Exhibits now fill three floors. — Michelin Guide

This unique organization is the only museum in the United States dedicated to honoring the legacy and culture of Sweden, Norway, Finland, Denmark and Iceland. Open Tu-Sa 10 am-4 pm; Su... — Where

This museum in a massive 1900s schoolhouse traces Scandinavian art, artifacts, and heritage all the way from Viking times. — Fodor's

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Discovery Park

Seattle 84 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

The best green space in Seattle has a little bit of everything: dense, nearly silent forest trails; paved stretches great for cycling; fields and lawns where dogs can romp. — Travel + Leisure

More than 7mi of hiking trails and 5mi of paved biking trails. — Michelin Guide

534 acres of honest-to-goodness nature. — Not For Tourists

A trek through Discovery Park, the largest wilderness expanse in the city, feels like an escape to another world. The park’s sprawling grounds feature forests, meadows, tide pools, sand... — Where

From a hilltop high enough to be above the fog on a fall morning, looking south toward Mt. Rainier; when "The Mountain is out," as Puget Sound residents say, everything else pales...This... — Afar Magazine

Pacific Science Center

Seattle 84 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

This interactive museum of science and industry once housed the science pavilion of the World’s Fair. — Lonely Planet

Butterfly sanctuary. Laser dome. IMAX Film Center. Dinosaurs. Space exhibits. Live animals and bugs. Do we need to say more? — On the Grid

If you have kids, the Pacific Science Center is a must-visit. — Fodor's

This Seattle favorite makes science exciting with innovative, hands-on exhibits, a tropical butterfly house, two giant-screened IMAX theaters and a Laser Dome. Open M-F 10 am-5 pm; Sa-Su... — Where

Featuring a domed overhead screen, six "surround-sound" speakers and reclining seats, this theater offers a changing series of movies that generally celebrate the wilderness, whales and other natural subjects. — Michelin Guide

Woodland Park Zoo

Seattle 83 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

The 92-acre Woodland Park Zoo is considered one of the best in the world. See animals from around the world, including giraffes, tigers and penguins. Oct. 1-April 30 open daily 9:30 am-4... — Where

This fine zoo includes 65 acres of savanna, tundra, marshland, tropical rain forest and other terrain. — Michelin Guide

Ninety-two acres are divided into bioclimatic zones here, allowing many animals to roam freely in habitat areas. — Fodor's

In Woodland Park, up the hill from Green Lake Park, the Woodland Park Zoo is one of Seattle’s greatest tourist attractions, consistently rated as one of the top 10 zoos in the country. — Lonely Planet

Too much fun despite the cute animals behind bars. — Not For Tourists

Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture

University District 83 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

Explore the cultures, wildlife and geography of Washington State and the Pacific Northwest at the Burke Museum. See the art of native peoples and the only real dinosaur fossils on display... — Where

The Northwest's foremost museum of paleontology, archaeology, and ethnology. — Frommer's

"Dzunuk'wa"a totem figure from coastal British Columbia... in front of Seattle's Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture. — Afar Magazine

The state's oldest museum, featuring exhibits that survey the natural history of the Pacific Northwest. — Fodor's

The best museum of natural history in the Northwest. — Lonely Planet

Museum of History & Industry

Seattle 83 The TripExpert score is determined by calculating the general consensus of expert reviewers. Learn more →

MOHAI, as it's known by locals, is not just the city's most comprehensive history museum, it's a salute to the tech-heavy roots of Seattle. — Travel + Leisure

Almost everything you need to know about Seattle is crammed into the refurbished Museum of History and Industry (MOHAI). — Lonely Planet

Experience all of Seattle's history from inception to present day. — Not For Tourists

Full-scale displays. — Michelin Guide

Also known as MOHAI, this important local collection tells Seattle’s story from the 1800s to the present through exhibits like the Great Seattle Fire. The city’s history is captured in... — Where

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  • Outdoors
    35 parks, gardens and outdoor attractions
  • Museums
    30 museums and galleries
  • Historical
    2 places of historical interest

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