Flowers at Pike Place Market. (photo by Jessica Kelly)
On the Puget Sound along the west coast, views of greenery, water, and mountains surround the Seattle skyline. Within the city limits, notable by the space needle, lies some of the most incredible food, art, and cultural scenes you’ll encounter.
Checking into The Edgewater
2411 Alaskan Way, Seattle, WA 98121
With beautiful terrace rooms overlooking Elliot Bay, with Mount Rainier in the distance, the hotel makes for a comfortable stay in a fantastic location. The rooms are modern and cozy, filled with natural light and the sound of the boats passing by. Relax on the terrace and listen to the water, breathing in the fresh air. Down the street are some local shops and the Pike Place neighborhood, just a short walk away.
W Seattle Hotel
1112 4th Ave, Seattle, WA 98101
A little ways away from the bay and more within the heart of the city is the W Seattle Hotel. The hotel has a huge music focus, with live music on certain evenings for guests and even a recording studio suite that has seen some famous faces. The rooms are beautiful, spacious, and very comfortable, with amenities for guests like delicious breakfast and plenty of murals and art by Morgan Zion around the hotel. Keep an eye out for their First Fridays at the W Seattle Hotel series in Living Room Bar with cocktails, apps, and incredible music.
Pike Place Market
Start at 1st Ave & Pike St.
If you’re a foodie, visiting Pike Place is an absolute must. It’s not just a market, the neighborhood is surrounded by local vendors selling everything from sesame red bean paste buns from Mee Sum Pastry, handcrafted Greek yogurt with fresh toppings like passion fruit at Ellenos Yogurt, and handcrafted ginger beer from Rachel’s Ginger Beer. Try to save room for the fresh naan from Saffron Spice and the award-winning chowder sampler at Pike Place Chowder with options like Seared Scallop Chowder, New England Clam Chowder, Seafood Bisque, and Crab and Oyster Chowder to name a few. Don’t forget to grab a fresh flower bouquet and explore some of the retailers and artists in the market, as well.
Pike Place Market. (photo by Jessica Kelly)
N 36th St, Seattle, WA 98103
Under the Aurora Avenue Bridge is a huge statue of the Fremont Troll. Known as a guardian of the neighborhood, the sculpture is a staple within the city and people come from all over to take a picture with it since it was built in 1990.
The Gum Wall
1428 Post Alley, Seattle, WA 98101
The Gum Wall in Seattle, Washington. (photo by Jessica Kelly)
Although it’s a little gross, an absolute must-visit is the Gum Wall. Bring some bubble gum with you, or throw a quarter in the gumball machine down the street to become part of the wall. The walls in this alleyway under Pike Place on First Avenue are completely covered in wads of already chewed bubble gum, creating an interesting form of colorful art.
Check out some of the beautiful parks sprinkled throughout the city like Kerry Park (211 W Highland Dr, Seattle, WA 98119). It’s definitely one of the smaller public parks, within a neighborhood on Queen Anne Hill, but the park overlooks the city. Visiting during sunset is that much more special. Discovery Park (3801 Discovery Park Blvd, Seattle, WA 98199) is a great place to visit with various walking trails in the Daybreak Star Cultural Center. Golden Gardens (8498 Seaview Pl NW, Seattle, WA 98117) has plenty of hiking trails and places to have a picnic, in addition to beaches. Olympic Sculpture Park (2901 Western Ave, Seattle, WA 9812) is completely covered in various sculptures to explore. Volunteer Park (1247 15th Ave E, Seattle, WA 98112) is another great option, spanning nearly 50 acres throughout the Capitol Hill neighborhood.
99 Union Street, Seattle, WA 98101
Goldfinch Tavern. (photo by Jessica Kelly)
Goldfinch Tavern located within the Four Seasons has an incredible lunch and dinner menu, with delicious options like the Burrata Salad with fresh juicy heirloom tomatoes, salty basil pesto, a drizzle of olive oil, and toast or the Goldfinch Chowder loaded with bacon, sweet Dungeness crab, clams, and served with crackers.
RockCreek Seafood & Spirits
4300 Fremont Ave N, Seattle, WA 98103
RockCreek Seafood has incredible entrées, but loading the table with appetizers is a great way to go, too. They have barbecued Spanish octopus served with roasted tomatoes, olives, fingerling potatoes, cannellini beans, and olive oil in addition to a bunch of different oyster dishes like shooters or charred oysters, and plenty of raw local oysters on the half shell. The shooters are incredible, particularly the sake with cucumber, shiso, and roe.
The Flour Box
5520 Rainier Ave S, Seattle, WA 98118
There are a lot of great donut places in Seattle, but the Flour Box is one you’ll never forget. There is a system to getting your hands on these donuts and it involves being there well before doors even open to making sure that you secure your spot in line. The small batch donut shop makes brioche donuts, specific flavors each week, and they’re always rotating, in addition to delicious milk (like their strawberry milk made with fresh syrups) and coffee drinks, among other baked goods like fudgy brownies. Again, prepare to be there before doors open and expect a line. When they’re gone they’re gone.
Taylor Shellfish Farms
1521 Melrose Ave, Seattle, WA 98122
Taylor Shellfish Farms. (photo by Jessica Kelly)
Taylor Shellfish has been a family-owned and operated farm and restaurant business since the late 1800s. They’re legends in the city of Seattle, creating special dishes using the finest seafood, and even canning some of their smoked delicacies to take home with you. The raw platters allow guests the opportunity to try a variety of oysters, marinated mussels, poached prawns, salmon tartar, and even geoduck siphon and belly. It may look unusual, but geoduck is essentially a firmer clam that has a little bit of sweetness to it and the texture is unbelievable. They serve it like sashimi with a little salty soy sauce. The Dungeness crab is tender and sweet. It comes with a secret dipping sauce that elevates the dish. If you enjoy oysters, try the Smoked Oyster Dip with crema, spices, and served with potato chips. It’s the perfect place to grab a glass of wine and enjoy some fresh local seafood in a cozy environment.
6049 Seaview Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98107
From the food to the service to the view, Ray’s is just the total package. Sitting by the window, guests can see seals swimming by as they watch the sunset while digging into their dishes. I highly recommend trying the Deep Fried Oysters served on crispy pork belly with pickled cabbage and a little white barbecue sauce, topped with jalapeños for a kick. The Applewood Grilled Sake Kasu with garlic fried brown rice, bok choy, scallions, pickled carrots, shiitake mushrooms, and a honey soy glaze is essentially the dish that put them on the map, said to be the dish that sealed the deal for their James Beard Award. Be sure to save some room for one of their amazing desserts like the Honey Lavender Crème Brûlée topped with honeycomb. Walk over to the water’s edge before heading out to see the seals relaxing and lounging.
411 University St, Seattle, WA 98101
The George. (photo by Jessica Kelly)
Walking distance from the W Hotel is The George, with a very old-school antique feel. In addition to the incredible atmosphere, it’s the perfect spot to order a quick breakfast like a plate full of eggs, hash browns, bacon or sausage, and English muffins with a side of coffee and green juice made with fruit, veggies, mint, and plenty of ginger. Get some fuel for the day in a luxurious environment.
1424 11th Ave Suite D, Seattle, WA 98122
Light Sleeper is a great place to pop in for a glass of wine and one of their specialty dishes. Their cuisine is experimental, combining different flavors and always playing with textures and combinations. Some examples include their ”Fries With Eyes” consisting of crispy bay shrimp with saffron aïoli and Old Bay or their Crudo with complimenting flavors like raw sturgeon with tangerine, fennel, pomelo, bitter almond, and orange flower. They often post their menu experiments on their social media, like when they were working on perfecting a Peruvian potato and octopus dish smothered in a glossy, squid ink barbecue sauce.