The best things to do in downtown Seattle — and beyond
Whether you prefer to visit historic theatres or urban wine tasting rooms, Kimpton Vintage Seattle offers the prime location from which to explore all of the city’s best attractions. Create your dream Seattle itinerary, whether you’ve arrived on your own, or with loved ones in tow. We also share our recommendations for free things to do in Seattle.
1-2 Seattle Day Itinerary
- Start any perfect Seattle day with a stroll through the vibrant hub of downtown Seattle — Pike Place Market & Post Alley, one of the country’s oldest and largest continuously operating public markets (and hands down the best free thing to do in the city).
- Walk down to the waterfront and along the Pier 66 Bell Street Cruise Terminal, an 11-acre complex that’s home to Norwegian Cruise Line and Oceania Cruises. Pier 66 is also an easy walk to the Seattle Aquarium and the Seattle Great Wheel — and to the 9-acre Olympic Sculpture Park in the other direction (north).
- In the afternoon, soak in some of the city’s most photographed views from Kerry Park, where Mount Rainier mightily hovers behind the Space Needle on a clear day.
- Grab dinner in Belltown at a lively neighborhood spot like Bangrak Market.
- On day two, head to Seattle Center’s 74-acre expanse to stop by the central International Fountain and to spend time at iconic Seattle attractions like the Space Needle, Chihuly Garden and Glass and MoPOP (Museum of Pop Culture).
- In the afternoon, head south to the Museum of Flight, or visit the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks (Ballard Locks) before grabbing dinner at one of the many eateries lining Ballard Avenue; try Stoneburner or La Carta de Oaxaca. Visit on the first Thursday of the month to enjoy free entry to most museums.
3-4 Day Itinerary
- On days three and four, look into the seasonal schedule at Lumen Field, home of the Seattle Seahawks and Sounders FC, and next door’s T-Mobile Park, home field of Major League Baseball's Seattle Mariners. Both also host concerts and other large events.
- Find nature within city limits at Ballard’s Golden Gardens beach, Fremont’s Gas Works Park or the 534-acre Discovery Park, located on the shores of Puget Sound in the Magnolia neighborhood.
- Experience Fremont’s funky personality (evidenced by its beloved Troll ), before enjoying a meal at Kaosamai, Eve, or The Whale Wins.
- On your final day, take a water taxi from the downtown waterfront to West Seattle to gain a different vantage point of the Seattle skyline. Highlights here range from a Hawaiian-Korean meal at Marination ma kai to an afternoon spent at Alki Beach. Back in downtown Seattle, check out the live music scene that makes this city tick at Showbox Market or Moore Theatre.
- Hop on a ferry from the downtown waterfront, and relax on the 35-minute journey to Bainbridge Island. The scenic ride is worth the adventure in itself, thanks to panoramas of the snowcapped Olympic Mountains, Seattle skyline and majestic Mount Rainier. Once on Bainbridge, it's easy to stroll to the quaint "downtown" strip that features shops, eateries (like Streamliner Diner ), galleries, tasting rooms and a nearby marina, too.
- Ferry back to Seattle for an afternoon of waterfront activities, ranging from stopping into the Seattle Aquarium to taking a spin on the Seattle Great Wheel.
- At mealtime, dive into local seafood delicacies at one of the family-friendly restaurants lining the waterfront.
- Fuel up with a Pike Place Market breakfast while watching Seattle bustle to life.
- Head south of downtown to make the most of SODO wine-tasting fun. While the thriving Washington wine scene counts Walla Walla (and nearby Woodinville, 30 minutes from Seattle) as its main hubs, there is plenty to be found within city limits, too. Visit tasting rooms for Sleight of Hand and Long Shadow/Nine Hats at SODO Urbanworks.
- If you’re enjoying a longer Seattle stay, keep on the wine theme by visiting farther-flung venues like Anelare and Sleeping Dog Wines (in Benton City, Washington), Reininger (with tasting rooms in Walla Walla and Spokane) and Westport Winery (in Aberdeen, about 120 miles southwest of Seattle). Dusted Valley has welcoming tasting rooms much closer to Seattle in Edmonds and Woodinville.
- Once back in downtown Seattle, grab a pre-show meal at Tulio, where the impeccable Italian dishes shine, too. Afterward, catch some live music at The Triple Door, or watch a dazzling musical performance under the grand domed ceiling of 5th Avenue Theatre.