Surrounded by massive peaks and the waters of Puget Sound, the amply watered city of Seattle is a place coated by lush greenery, giving its motto The Emerald City a strong element of truth. This beauty has not only attracted those that are in love with the outdoors, but creatives of all creeds as well.
This has resulted not only in an excellent music and visual arts scene in the region, but also a vibrant startup culture. Having birthed Boeing, Microsoft, Starbucks, Amazon, Costco and others over the years, there is a lot of energy and entrepreneurial passion in this place. Taken together with all the other strong points of Seattle, your visit here will one marked with a series of memorable experiences.
Spearheaded by Paul Allen, one of the founding fathers of Microsoft, the EMP Museum is an institution dedicated to chronicling and understanding the effects of contemporary pop culture on society. While this futuristic structure honors the contributions of television, film, and music of the past generation, it also plays a big role in fostering the popular arts in the present day, with events like Sound Off (a battle of the bands for those under 21) and SIFF (the Seattle International Film Festival) being held throughout the year.
Opened only two years ago, Chihuly Garden and Glass, the home of crystal art work of local creative Dale Chihuly has skyrocketed up the ranks to become the #1 attraction in all of Seattle according to Tripadvisor. Being a world leader in the artistic niche of glass blowing, Chihuly has populated this gallery with masterpieces that look as if they came straight out of a Dr. Seuss book. Relax afterwards at the cafe or at the fine restaurant on site.
Being one of the cities that make up America’s Pacific Gateway, Seattle has had a long history of Asian immigration and integration within its borders, making it the perfect place to locate an institution like the Wing Luke Museum.
This place documents the story of these cultures, from Korean to Vietnamese, Chinese to Pacific Islander and more. Being partnered with the Smithsonian, the exhibits here showcase visual arts produced by the kaleidoscope of ethnicities that make up this cultural segment of the population, as well as spotlighting social justice issues that have faced this communities over the years.
Located amidst a wealth of natural beauty that other portions of America would kill to have, the views that can be had here will make any photography enthusiasts in your party very happy indeed. Most head to the Space Needle, which offers some of the best views in the area of highlights like the skyline of downtown Seattle, Puget Sound, and the towering peaks of Mount Baker and Rainier. Additionally, a revolving restaurant also offers one of the atmospheric spots to enjoy a meal in town.
However, those hoping to get a shot of the iconic structure should head to Skyview Observatory, as this observation platform on the 73rd floor of the Columbia Center skyscraper has one of the best views of this landmark. Those seeking a budget alternative to the $40 that it costs to go up the Space Needle will also love this attraction, as it provides many of the views that the former attraction offers, all at less than half the price.
Those that are into local food will want to spend some time walking between the well-stocked stalls of Pike Place Market, as this venerable Seattle institution is the best place to bear witness to the agricultural and oceanic bounty of this part of the Pacific Northwest.
Being the oldest continually operating farmer’s market in the United States, this place has had the time to develop the charms and historical assets that make it a top line attraction in the city. These include the first location of the now globally famous coffee chain Starbucks, a fish market where the catch of the day flies through the air towards the soft hands of expertly trained fishmongers, and some of the most talented buskers in the nation that perform for tourists day in and day out.
While Seattle is famous for having been the home of Microsoft, which is one of the foremost corporations on Earth, it is also home to one of the largest aerospace companies in the world in Boeing. Working with a local non-profit group of plane enthusiasts, it has provided the area with the Museum of Flight, which has a variety of significant plane through history, including the first 747 jetliner to ply the skies in 1969, to a Concorde supersonic passenger jet that used to belong to British Airways before the airline scrubbed the service in recent decades.