If you want to know what to do in Seattle for a weekend, keep reading for a post that we originally wrote via email to our friends who were here visiting for two days and has now transformed into a large list of our favorite Seattle stuff. This is by no means an exhaustive list, and we're more than happy to add your favorite if it's not below!


Transportation

Seattle has a pretty large public transportation system, with a LightRail from the airport to downtown Seattle (for $3 each way!). This may not be as large as some other metropolitan areas, but if you're flying in and wanting to go straight down town, this is the option for you.

There are also plenty of Uber cars available, and is somewhere between $6-$12 to go anywhere around Seattle metro once you're in Seattle. You can't catch an Uber from the airport, however, so fair warning: make other plans if you want to go somewhere specific from the airport. If you're anti-Uber, Seattle also has a pretty large Lyft presence, too.

You can rent cars at the airport or in a bunch of locations in downtown Seattle. Enterprise, Budget, and Alamo all have airport and downtown rental locations. A car is not necessary for your stay, but could be fun to explore the local area (especially the east side, which is our fave).


Things to See/Do

Downtown/City Center:
The Space Needle was built in 1962 for the World's Fair, and has remained a Seattle landmark ever since. It's a little pricey to go up--$12 alone--but if you buy a $19 ticket, you can also visit the Chihuly Garden & Glass as well! The Space Needle gives you a 360-degree view, and is 100% worth it on a sunny day.

Beyond Chihuly, Seattle is home to a handful of awesome museums. The Experience Music Project (EMP) is well-loved by musicians and music-lovers alike. The Seattle Art Museum and Olympic Sculpture Park are Hagan family favorites (we're members!). The Pacific Science Center is centered around kids, but is still a solid choice for all ages. A little farther south, the Museum of Flight is also a favorite for airplane fiends.

You can get similarly awesome views from Seattle's Great Wheel, a large ferris wheel on the oceanfront of Seattle. Don't let the surrounding construction shy you away!

Pike Place Market is also a Seattle staple, and you should definitely make it over there! Full of delicious, locally-grown food (and flying fish!), the market also offers a unique Seattle experience. Be sure to find the south side of Post Alley for the gross-but-awesome gum wall, and if you like craft beer, there are plenty of options! Don't forget to say hi to Rachel.

Also in Pike Place is the first-ever Starbucks, and we'd be remiss to mention the flagship Nordstrom on 5th and Pine (a 4-block walk from Pike Place) that just got renovated in late 2015/early 2016.

Downtown/Pioneer Square:
Home of the Seahawks, Sounders, and Mariners, buy some sports gear at CenturyLink Field or Safeco Stadium.

Walk around a little, as Pioneer Square has a ton of art galleries and rug stores. If you want a more historical take, check out the Seattle Underground Tour (fair warning: I haven't done this since I was a kid, but remember it being super fun). There's also a great food and walking tour of Pioneer Square as well.

Other Neighborhoods:
If you want a little more of the Seattle flavor, Fremont is a cool neighborhood that has a Lenin statue, is the self-proclaimed Center of the Universe, and home of the famous Fremont Troll under the bridge. You can also see the Brooks flagship store, which is incredibly cool if you're a runner.

We also like South Lake Union (otherwise known as Amazon country, as Amazon pretty much owns all the real estate that way). Here, you can visit the REI flagship (hello, awesome climbing wall), check out the Center for Wooden Boats, and the Museum of History and Industry (MOHAI--we wholeheartedly recommend this, especially the Seattle Fire musical...trust us!).

Capitol Hill is a hipster-y place where a lot of younger people live. Check out Unicorn & Narwhal, two carnival-themed bars in Capitol Hill. Dick's Drive-In is a Seattle staple and seen in a Macklemore video, which can give you immediate street cred here. Starbucks also has a Roastery, the only in the world, which can be fun if you're interested in seeing how coffee beans are roasted and want to see the nicest Starbucks ever.

Outdoor Fun:
For free, gorgeous views of the city and the sound, check out Volunteer Park, Kerry Park, or Gas Works Park.

We love Green Lake Park if you want to do any outdoor water sports that require zero motors, like paddle boarding, kayaking, or pedal boating. There's also a 3mi track around the lake which makes for a gorgeous walk/run.

If you're willing to take a little drive, Mt. Rainier is stunning, large, and perfect for day hikes or overnight camping. If you don't want to drive that far but still want a little outdoorsy feeling, check out hikes at Mt. Si, Little Si, or even Rattlesnake Ledge (hikes ordered from longest to shortest).


Food

Seattle is known for Tom Douglas restaurants. Check out Lola for brunch, Serious Pie for lunch, and the Carlile Room for dinner if you need a place to start, but all are amazing!

Renee Erickson is a newer restauranteur whose restaurants all have fun names. If you like oysters, immediately head over to The Walrus and the Carpenter (fair warning: no reservations and huge waits, so go early!). Next to W&tC is the Barnacle Bar, which is where you'll wait because you didn't get in line early enough for W&tC. I've heard The Whale Wins is amazing, as well as General Porpoise if you love donuts.

Ethan Stowell restaurants are also incredibly popular. Check out Staple & Fancy in Ballard, or How to Cook a Wolf in Queen Anne (yes, that's really the name).

Josh Henderson restaurants (called the Huxley Wallace Collective) are vast; we like Saint Helens Cafe for breakfast, Bar Noroeste for tacos, and Westward for dinner (also check out the amazing North Lake Union views here!).

The last large restauranteur you should check out in Seattle is Matt Dillion, chef of Sitka & Spruce in Capitol Hill and Bar Sajor in Pioneer Square. He's also the chef at London Plane, a fun lunch place but is usually cramped and busy--check it out though because there's also a store and florist in it, too!

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