If you find yourself planning a staycation, consider yourself lucky that you live near Seattle. Seattle sits at the crossroads between time-tested landmarks and fresh new attractions, making it the ideal staycation city. The ever-evolving list of activities means that, chances are, there’s plenty you have yet to check off your PNW bucket list, whether you grew up in Seattle or recently moved to the area.
The Space Needle occupies most Seattle travel lists, and in that regard, this one is no different. But we also want to draw your attention to some attractions that have likely flown under your radar. Venture to downtown Seattle for the city spirit, stay for the points of interest you’ve been dying to see up close. Here are five of our picks for your next staycation Seattle style.
Amazon enhanced its downtown complex with the Seattle spheres, glass orbs which feature lush botanical gardens and exhibits. The Seattle Spheres opened to the public as of 2018, but because you have to reserve a tour, we’re guessing they haven’t made it onto your itinerary yet.
Sign up to visit the Amazon HQ which will also take you on a tour through the spheres. If you don’t want to commit to the tour, consider visiting the Understory, an interactive, 360-degree experience that features exhibits about flora and design–and is free of cost.
See Seattle from above at the Space Needle, Seattle’s most iconic landmark. It’s the structure that makes Seattle’s skyline so distinctive, but it’s even more breathtaking from above than it is from below. Ride the elevator to the top, where you can take in 360-degrees of Seattle, from Lake Washington all the way to Elliott Bay.
Step out onto The Loupe, the only rotating glass floor in the world. Admire the view, then stay for small bites and beer and wine at rotating Atmos Café.
Take a peek into the deep blue sea at the Seattle Aquarium. Perched on Seattle’s Elliott Bay, the aquarium is worth visiting for the views alone. But step inside and you’ll be transported to the world deep beneath the ocean. Get up close to animals like tufted puffins, harbor seals, otters, and countless varieties of fish.
The aquarium also features countless exhibits where you’ll love learning the ins and outs of marine life. Brush up the life of a drifter or take a peek into the tropical Pacific. No matter your prior opinions of ocean life, the Seattle Aquarium is sure to make you fall in love.
A staycation in Seattle opens you up to more than just the city. Ferries take off down on Alaskan Way, taking you to various islands among the straits and bays of the Pacific Northwest. Venture to nearby Bainbridge Island or sail further to the quaint San Juan Islands. If you haven’t yet taken a passenger ferry, this is the staycation to start.
Pike Place Market is always worth a peek for the freshly fried donuts and vibrant bouquets of flowers. Take a break from perusing the shops and slip into Post Alley beneath the market where you’ll find the Gum Wall. The wall is covered in blobs of gum that obscure the old brick beneath them.
Bring a stick of gum or two so you can add your own gob to the wall. But sure to pose for a picture while you’re there. The Gum Wall is among Seattle’s most iconic and Instagrammable backdrops.
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