The sparkling crown jewel of the Pacific Northwest is a cosmopolitan, green, paradise on the Puget Sound. Protected by vast mountaintops, sprawling forests, and dozens of scenic parks, Washington‘s largest city is home to a bustling arts and cultural scene, some of the nation’s top tech headquarters, and exciting nightlife. Downtown high-rise towers offer sweeping views, while more quiet communities nestled among the evergreens provide quiet protection from the uptempo pace of the city.
First, a great “timber town,” Seattle’s central business district was eternally changed after the Great Seattle Fire of 1889. From the ashes, major skyscrapers and roadways were constructed, while historical landmarks, such as Pike Place Market and Pioneer Square, were preserved. Today, Seattle is one of the world's leading technology and software hubs, serving as headquarters to several notable companies such as Amazon, Starbucks, and Microsoft, among several others.
Downtown Seattle offers a dynamic variety of neighbors from all walks of life. There is always something to see and experience, while tucked-away residential enclaves serve as a refuge for lucky locals. Just outside of the bustling city, Olympic National Forest, Mount Rainier National Park, and North Cascades National Park are a few of the region’s sprawling evergreen forests, offering endless opportunities for scenic outdoor exploration. In the evenings, dinner and drinks are enjoyed at award-winning eateries offering special Northwestern influence on globally inspired cuisine.
Explore my collection of favorite outdoor spots near Seattle.
Within the Queen Anne neighborhood, exquisite cuisine has been served at Canlis since the 1950s. One of the most award-winning restaurants in the Pacific Northwest has been ranked as one of the 20 best eateries in the nation by Gourmet Magazine and has also received critical acclaim from The New York Times, Wine Spectator, Food & Wine, and is a winner of the James Beard Award for their wine program. Fine steaks and just-caught Pacific Northwest seafood are the specialties of this undisputed Seattle icon.
Polished Indian fares are found in the heart of Pioneer Square at Nirmal’s. Led by five-star master chef Nirmal Monteiro and his decades of international experience, innovative treats such as flavorful curry creations, hara bhara tikki, and pork vindaloo are served in a warm, airy space with a particularly popular prix fixe lunch.
Unique yet comforting French-inspired Vietnamese fusion is the specialty of Stateside. Inspired by exciting years spent living, traveling, and cooking abroad, the duck rolls are the unmatched star of the menu, perfectly seasoned, and wrapped in fresh herbs. Located just outside of downtown, the classy yet tropical decor plays as a distraction from Seattle’s misty climate.
In a cozy storefront just off of Interstate 5, Kedai Makan serves authentic Malaysian cuisine from both the past and present. Traditional street food offerings of chili pan mee and nasi goreng kedai are the pride and joy of one of Seattle’s best-kept secrets. A rotating menu featuring seasonal selections offers patrons something different with every visit, with each one exceeding expectations.
Explore my collection of favorite restaurants in Seattle.
Seattle’s iconic Pike Place Market is the city's original farmers’ market and artisan shopping site. Visitors go for Beecher's famous macaroni and cheese, fish-throwing, showcasing the astonishingly fresh catches of the day, and a hot cup of Joe from the world's first Starbucks. The emblematic 605-foot tall Space Needle is the legendary crown jewel of the Seattle skyline. The top of the Needle features a revolving lounge and observation deck providing breathtaking, panoramic views of the skyline and sea. A bit more removed from the vibrancy of the city, the region is home to several peaceful beaches, particularly enjoyable on sunny summer afternoons. Alki Beach, reachable from downtown by a water taxi, offers refuge from sometimes-chaotic city life, stretching across two and a half miles.
Explore my collection of must-see historical landmarks in Seattle.
Seattle is home to a wide array of top-performing schools, both public and private. Just a few top choices include:
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