As gloomy days finally give way to bluer skies, the Emerald City comes alive. No matter if you’re a Seattle local or just passing through, this city offers so many ways to enjoy the summer season’s long, sunny days.
From breathtaking adventures to unexpected experiences, here are 10 great things to do in Seattle this summer.
Ride the Ferry
When living in the city, it’s easy to forget how close we are to stunning scenery and tiny, quaint towns just across the Sound. In less than an hour, you can access Bainbridge, Vashon and Whidbey Islands, plus the entire Olympic Peninsula through Kingston.
By taking a ferry, you’ll experience more than convenient access to some of our state’s greatest locales. You’ll also soak in some of the best views of our city from a vantage point only available from the water.
Chihuly Garden and Glass
Born from the creative brilliance of artist Dale Chihuly—a Washington native—Chihuly Garden and Glass is a world-class art exhibition built in 2012. Located by the Space Needle, it’s become one of the most breathtaking attractions in Seattle.
In the 60s, Chihuly worked at Venice’s Venini Glass Factory. Here, the artist studied the glass-blowing techniques he’d soon evolve into his own iconic style. Over the years, Chihuly’s monumental art has defined a new era of glasswork. Many of these standout pieces are now collected in the garden.
Join the countless visitors who wander into the garden on a whim—and walk out stunned at this hidden gem’s beauty. It’ll be the highlight of any trip.
Beneath the Streets
Are you looking for an excursion that’s fascinating, educational and fun? Then check out Bill Speidel’s Underground Tour. With his famous tour, explore the hidden storefronts and sidewalks entombed underneath Seattle.
So, why does Seattle have a subterranean city just beneath our feet? It all goes back to the Great Fire of 1889 which leveled much of the city. During reconstruction, city planners decided to rebuilt right on top of Seattle’s crumbled remains. This decision left behind an incredible series of underground passageways underneath the city.
While touring the tunnels, tour guides tell stories about Seattle’s history. These hilarious and informative tales give vivid insight into the lives of Seattle’s early pioneers. Touristy? Sure. Fun? Most definitely.
Cheer On Your Favorite Team
Seahawks season is over, but summer is prime time to enjoy Seattle’s other beloved sports teams including the Mariners and the Sounders FC. Both clubs play just south of Pioneer Square making it ultra-convenient for anyone to enjoy a game via bike, car, public transit or your own two feet.
Kayaking Washington’s Waterways
Surrounded by countless square miles of waterways, Seattleites are lucky. From the Salish Sea to Lake Washington to the Snohomish River, there’s no end to places to explore in King County, or a short drive away.
One of our favorite ways to enjoy the Pacific Northwest’s beauty is by kayak. It’s a perfect activity for everyone from beginners to the most advanced outdoor lovers. Whether you’re looking for a guided group trip, prefer adventuring solo or something in between, kayaking the Seattle area is a great way to get out into nature.
Take A Hike
Despite our rainy reputation, the Seattle area is an outdoor lover’s paradise. Within an hour’s drive (or ferry ride), anyone can discover trails and walks ideal for all skills levels.
For an urban hiking destination, go to the Magnolia neighborhood and walk Discovery Park’s 11 miles of trails complete with skyline views. Or if you’re itching to get out-of-town, hike the 7.4 miles up to Poo-Poo Point at Tiger Mountain where you’ll enjoy incredible views of Mt. Rainier, Lake Sammamish and beyond.
Paraglide Over Washington
Ready to get that adrenaline pumping? Why not take to the skies and fly above the Seattle-area scenery by paragliding.
Revel in unforgettable views enjoyed only when you’re flying alongside bald eagles. If you’re ready for the adventure, the closest paragliding outfits take off just east of Seattle on Tiger Mountain.
Capitol Hill Block Party
This is Seattle we’re talking about, so there’s never a shortage of fantastic musical events and festivals. Music fans of any genre can find something for them—especially in the summer when everyone comes out to play.
Capitol Hill is more than just one of Seattle’s trendiest neighborhoods. It’s also home to the Capitol Hill Block Party which brings the top pop, dance and party acts onto one bill. In 2019, look forward to artists like Phantogram, Lizzo, RL Grime, Big Wild, Aminé, Mitski and more starting the party up on Cap Hill.
Bumbershoot Music Festival
If you’re looking for an iconic, local summer music festival, you can’t miss Seattle’s classic, Bumbershoot. Every Labor Day weekend, the area around the Space Needle becomes a music lover’s paradise.
Bumbershoot leans towards indie, rock and pop with recent headliners consisting of Fleet Foxes, Portugal. The Man and the Chainsmokers. As it takes place at summer’s end, Bumbershoot is the apex musical event of the season for many locals.
Even as festivals go, Bumbershoot is a little pricey. However, it’s an unparalleled way to end the summer and experience Seattle the way it’s meant to be—with an amazing live soundtrack.
Rent a Hot Tub Boat in Ballard
Sometimes, even the most adventurous Seattle explorers need a break. Don’t think that means giving up the outdoors though. Instead, get out on the water—and enjoy life in a hot tub boat.
Currently based in the hip Ballard neighborhood, hot tub boats are the newest way to enjoy the water in-style. No matter the weather, these handmade boats provide a warm, fun way to enjoy a unique romantic date, party with your friends or lounge in luxury.
We all know how awesome it feels to be on a boat. Why not take to the next level and be in a hot tub on boat?
So whether you’re looking to relax and enjoy the scenery, listen to some music, or be a little more adventurous this summer, Seattle is a great place to visit and explore.