When people think of the Northern Pacific Coast, they often think of rain and clouds. But the city of Seattle offers so much amongst the raindrops and dreary skies. In fact, it is the perfect destination for family vacations. Today, I am going to share the best things to do in Seattle with family. Some of these things to do in Seattle will intrigue you enough to start thinking about what you want your family vacation in this city to look like. This will be excellent, because I can then use that information as I am personalizing your itinerary for your family vacation in Seattle.
When you arrive in Seattle, one of the first things you will notice is there is a coffee shop on almost every corner. You may be tempted to grab your first cup of coffee in Seattle from any of them. But hold off until you have reached the very first Starbucks.
The very first Starbucks in Seattle was opened in Pike Place Market in 1971. Once you have your cup of coffee in hand, explore the rest of the market. You can eat lunch, grab some fresh foods to go, or devour some crumpets from The Crumpet Shop. Whatever you do in Pike Place Market, it is almost guaranteed it will be on the list of the best things to do in Seattle!
Oh, and once you have had coffee from the very first Starbucks, feel free to visit many of the other coffee shops. Then you can decide which coffee shop has your favorite coffee in Seattle.
The Space Needle has been a part of the Seattle skyline since 1962. That is when it was constructed for the World’s Fair. This is one of the best places to see panoramic views of the city. Just be careful of the revolving glass floor. It has been known to make people dizzy.
People watching is a fun activity to do when you travel as a family. Pioneer Square is the oldest neighborhood in Seattle. It is also one of the best places for people watching.
Of course, you can also visit bookstores, boutiques, and cafes when you are there.
You will have plenty of opportunities to take family pictures while on vacation in Seattle. But some of your favorite pictures will be from Chihuly Garden and Glass. This glass museum is full of indoor and outdoor glass sculptures. What each outdoor sculpture looks like will depend on the weather on the day you visit.
The Bainbridge Island Ferry is the only ferry that will take your family over to Bainbridge Island. You can choose to simply ride the ferry to see the city from a different vantage point. Or you can get off at Bainbridge Island to explore the one hundred fifty acres of gardens.
The ferry ride does take thirty-five minutes each way. So, keep that in mind if you are on a strict schedule while on your family vacation in Seattle.
The Seattle Great Wheel can be found on Pier 57. It is the largest Ferris wheel in the country. Each gondola is fully enclosed. So, you will be comfortable no matter what the weather when you are one hundred seventy-five feet in the air. And that means you can sit back, relax, and enjoy the views.
The Ballard Locks are a labyrinth of waterways that connect the Ship Canal and Lake Washington to Puget Sound. This is one of the best places to wander around on a sunny Seattle day. As you are walking, watch the boats come and go through these waterways.
There are plenty of family adventures to be had underneath the main streets of Seattle. The only way to experience them is to take one of the underground tours of Seattle. Your tour guide will share the history of these underground tunnels and passageways.
These underground tours are one of the best things to do in Seattle.
If you have an airplane lover in your family, a tour of the Future of Flight Aviation Center and Boeing Tour should be near the top of your itinerary. This hour and a half tour will have you learning about the past, present, and future of flying. Your tour will conclude with a tour of the facility where Boeing aircraft are manufactured and tested.
The inside of the Seattle Art Museum is filled with Pacific Northwest and Native American artwork. Add in the temporary exhibits that rotate and you never know what you will see during your visit. Just make sure you save a little time to visit the Olympic Sculpture Park nearby.
Discovery Park is the largest green space in Seattle. Inside this park, your family will find beaches, hiking trails, and the West Point Lighthouse. I recommend hiking on the North Beach Trail to see this lighthouse. However, you can hike the South Beach Trail to see views of Mount Rainier.
Other family friendly areas at this park include tennis courts, playground, and a cultural center.
This arboretum is two hundred thirty acres. It is divided into multiple gardens. The most popular gardens include the Pacific Connections Garden, Japanese Garden, and Rhododendron Glen.
While the kids won’t love the plants and flowers, they will love heading out in a kayak to explore. You can rent kayaks and canoes nearby for this family adventure.
If you want a quick way to see a portion of Seattle quickly, I recommend taking a ride on the Seattle Center Monorail. The monorail follows a one-mile route that takes you from the Space Needle to Westlake Center in the downtown area. This is an excellent option when you need a little downtime during your day.
Science will literally come to life for your kids when you visit the Pacific Science Center. Let them have fun moving a two-ton granite ball. Enjoy the silence inside the Butterfly House. And listen to their oohs and aahs as you explore galaxies within the planetarium.
There’s no rule that states you can’t visit a beach while on a family vacation in Seattle. Visiting Alki Beach is one of the best things to do in Seattle during the summer months. While you relax, the kids can play beach volleyball, build sandcastles, and go for a swim.
Then you can all take a walk down the boardwalk to talk about all the fun you are having on this family vacation.
You won’t need to travel too far to experience a wine tasting while in Seattle. Simply head over to Sodo Urban Works and find ten local wineries in close proximity to each other. The kids can enjoy a soda while you find a few favorite wines to take home.
You won’t be able to resist adding a history lesson to your family vacation in Seattle. A trip to the Duwamish Longhouse and Cultural Center will allow your entire family to learn about the indigenous history of Seattle, as well as the cultural history of the area.
The Fremont Troll is one of the best things to see while in Seattle. This troll is located underneath the north end of the George Washington Memorial Bridge. Take the time to grab a few family pictures near this grumpy troll. They may be the best pictures you get during this family vacation!
Yes, there is a gum wall in Seattle. And yes, this wall is exactly what you think it is. Chewed up gum covers this wall completely.
The Post Alley Gun Wall is near Pike Place. And since it is one of the best things to do in Seattle, it will often be crowded.
Feel free to take pictures of the family near the gum wall. Just don’t stand too close to the wall. If you do, you may find yourself sticky and covered with gum.
One of the best ways to see Mount Rainier, besides hiking it, is via a hot air balloon ride. The launches normally take place just before sunrise. So, you get spectacular views of the rising sun and colorful sky.
Oh, and don’t forget to look at Mount Rainier, as well as the rivers, lakes, and forests down below. After all, that’s what you wanted to see when you booked this family experience!
A walking tour of Seattle is an excellent way to learn where attractions are located, while learning the history of the city at the same time. There are quite a few walking tours in Seattle. A couple of favorites include a general city tour, Pike Place Market tour, and Old Seattle Cemetery Tour.
These are the best things to do in Seattle with family while on vacation. There are so many other things to do in Seattle that I can put on your itinerary as I am personalizing it for your family vacation. All you need to do is let me know what your family is interested in while you are making memories together away from home.
If you said yes, I would like to invite you to click here to schedule a personalized family vacation planning session with me. When you click the link, you will be taken directly to my digital calendar to schedule a time that is convenient for you.
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