Space Needle#3 in Best Things To Do in Seattle
If there's one thing Seattle is known for (aside from coffee and Tom Hanks' insomnia), it's the 605-foot tall Space Needle. Built for the 1962 World's Fair, the Space Needle has dominated Seattle's skyline ever since with its unique UFO-like design. The tower's round observation deck (520-feet high) offers spectacular views of the city and the nearby Olympic Mountains. Its latest feature is The Loupe, a revolving glass floor. Also at the top of the needle is a cafe and a wine bar. If you're not a fan of heights, check out the Spacebase gift shop at the bottom of the tower.
When it comes to prices, recent visitors are torn: Some said the views are worth the high admission price, while others said it's just as impressive from the ground. Even those who said it was expensive admitted that for first-time visitors to Seattle, it's a must-see and many recommend purchasing a CityPASS to save money. Reviewers also recommend you make a stop here on a clear day as you'll likely miss out on the views if it's foggy.
You can avoid the steep admission charge ($32.50 to $37.50 for adults and $24.50 to $28.50 for children ages 5 to 12) by purchasing a CityPASS that includes admission to additional attractions or by combining your Space Needle ticket with the entrance fee to the Chihuly Garden and Glass located next door. You can also book a timed ticket, which will save you waiting in line.
The Space Needle is located in the Queen Anne neighborhood (about a mile north of downtown Seattle), and the observation deck is open every day from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday and from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday through Sunday. You can valet park your car for $26. There are also several parking lots and garages nearby, or you can hop on the monorail to the Seattle Center stop. For more information, check out the Space Needle website.
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#1 Pike Place Market
Since 1907, this bustling market near the downtown waterfront has been the go-to place for local produce. Today, you can find almost everything, from local artwork to vinyl records. Plus, the flower market is a particular must-see, according to reviewers. Though Pike Place Market is one of the most tourist-heavy attractions in Seattle (plan to run into crowds, especially during the weekend) that's no reason to scratch it off your to-do list. Recent visitors said the abundance of vendors and lively atmosphere make it an experience you shouldn't pass up, no matter how busy it gets.
The streets surrounding Pike Place Market are peppered with restaurants and coffee shops, and there's an information booth just west of the marketplace at First Avenue. If you want a little help navigating the massive market, guided tours and food tours are available from third-party companies. You can find a list on the market's website here.
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