Seattle in the holidays is more than a season. The shorter winter days cast an ambiance over the city that most of us crave come the holidays: cool enough to bundle up, but not so cold that you risk frostbite if you set foot outside. No sooner has Thanksgiving wrapped up than Seattle transforms in a shower of shimmery lights and pop-up holiday markets, best enjoyed beneath a brooding gray sky.
Beyond just being in the city, Seattle knows how to put on a holiday party. And the best part is that most are clustered around the heart of downtown, well within walking distance of Motif Seattle. Meander along the twinkly-lit streets to one of these 4 things to do in Seattle for Christmas, from tree lightings to ship festivals to musical spectaculars.
For the 30th year in a row, Seattle architects will put their skills to the test to construct an entire gingerbread village at the Seattle Sheraton. The event benefits the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. Viewing hours are 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 9 a.m. to 11 p.m. Friday and Saturday.
With over a month-long run, Seattle Center’s Winterfest truly offers something for everyone. From sparkling lights and kid-friendly attractions to ice skating and ice sculpting, you’ll find every winter activity you can dream up scattered throughout the month. Winterfest even launches fireworks from the Space Needle to mark New Year's Eve.
A new celebration of lights will kick-off this winter at Woodland Park Zoo in place of the annual WildLights. Experience WildLanterns, which features intricate lanterns of animals we all know and love. Wander through jungle landscapes and safari scenes to discover everything from snow leopards to zebras in lantern form.
The Seattle Festival of Trees has been a Seattle Christmas staple since 1978. People from around the Pacific Northwest purchase these spectacularly decorated trees, with proceeds benefiting the Autism Center at Seattle Children’s Hospital. These trees are then put on display for all to enjoy in a festive window display at the Fairmont Olympic.
Where Seattle gets social. By design.
Make your way to the fifth floor on 5th Avenue for downtown Seattle’s best rooftop happy hour hotspot, Frolik Kitchen + Cocktails — consistently voted among the best rooftop bars in America.
Come for the handcrafted cocktails, stay for Chef Adam Stevenson’s locally-inspired menu, featuring wild seafood, foraged mushrooms and the best of the Pacific Northwest.
And do come to play. Warmed by two gorgeous outdoor fireplaces and vibrant lighting in edgy urban patio style, you’ll want to start some mischief of your own with a little shuffleboard, LED ping-pong and a rotating cast of live Seattle musicians and DJs.
Open daily for breakfast, lunch, dinner — and weekends for brunch. See what’s on the menu or reserve your table below.BOOK A TABLE AT FROLIK KITCHEN + COCKTAILS