Author Garth Stein wrote of Seattle that “In Seattle we live among the trees and the waterways, and we feel we are rocked gently in the cradle of life.” That’s precisely what makes fall in Seattle so special. In Washington, the seasons shift imperceptibly. There’s no swift drop in temperatures, and the leaves don’t fall from the trees in one fell swoop.
Fall settles in slowly, and evidence of the new season appears largely in the details. It’s in the slow inclusion of flannels and Carhartt beanies in the Pacific Northwesterner wardrobe. It’s in the shorter days, fewer of which are sunny. And it’s in the seasonal events peppered throughout September, October, and November—many of which celebrate harvests.
Fall in Seattle is unlike fall in other parts of the country. Summer runs into fall which runs into winter until the sun breaks again come spring. Though summer in Seattle gets all the attention, don’t overlook fall in the city. These fall activities in Seattle are just a few of the many reasons why.
Seattle may be the city of evergreens, but that doesn’t mean you’ll have to skip your dose of fall colors. Many of Seattle’s streets are lined with deciduous trees, so going for a stroll will bring all of fall’s colors to your attention. But Seattle is also home to countless parks, each of which offer their own leaf-peeping experiences.
Immerse yourself in either the Washington Park Arboretum, the Seattle Japanese Gardens, or Sam Smith Park. The three are all favorites among Seattleites for their vibrant colors. Here, you can watch the leaves change from green to shades of yellow, red, and orange.
The Ballard Locks span the gap between the fresh water Lake Union and the salty Puget Sound, allowing boats safe and responsible passage between the two. Once a boat enters the lock, the water levels are either raised or lowered depending on the boat’s destination. But boats aren’t the locks’ only passengers.
Salmon also pass through the locks on their way upstream to spawn. Each year, 15,000 Coho salmon pass through the locks, the last group of salmon to make their way upstream. Peak viewing time for Coho is September, making fall the perfect time to get up close and personal with the fish ladders.
Don’t forego your favorite fall past times just because you’re traveling. In fact, Seattle is an epicenter for all things fall, like corn mazes and pumpkin patches. Because agriculture is part of Washington’s DNA, you’ll find fantastic family farms within just a short drive from downtown.
Discover the sights and sounds of fall you'll only discover in downtown Seattle. With a soft scarf piled around your neck and steamy cup of coffee in-hand, you'll experience fall as it was always meant to be. Save up to 20% on your room rate (plus a flexible cancellation policy) so you can put even more emphasis on your seasonal experiences of choice. With guaranteed early check-in and guaranteed late checkout, you'll also be able to make the most of your urban escape. Don't wait—fall in Seattle won't linger.
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