Feature Photo by Space Needle

Best Sightseeing In Seattle Near The Duwamish River Valley

Want to see the beautiful sights and scenes of Seattle without heading out on a bike, lacing up your hiking boots, or grabbing a paddle? Here are some of the best ways to sightsee extraordinary Washington outdoors in Seattle without breaking a sweat!

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Photo by Space Needle

Seattle Sightseeing: Space Needle

Best For Most Unique Seattle Experience
If you’ve never been to Seattle before, a visit to the Space Needle is one of the most recommended experiences for first time visitors to both see the sights of the city and surrounding areas and enjoy one of Seattle’s most unique attractions. Standing out against the city skyline it is easy to see why the landmark draws millions of visitors each year and is a perfect destination for Seattle sightseers with views of Mount Rainier, Elliott Bay, and the Olympic and Cascade Mountains. You can enjoy the all-glass floor on the lower viewing level that gives visitors an amazing birdseye view of the city below, as well as the floor-to-ceiling glass windows on the upper level for 360 degree views. The Loupe, the only rotating glass floor in the world, and the outdoor deck are other Space Needle experiences you won’t want to miss out on, too. If you’re hungry, you can stop into the Atmos Cafe for a snack, or book a reservation with the Loupe Lounge or Sunset Champagne to sip on a drink while taking in the extraordinary sights.

Space Needle Trip Tips
Reservation or Tickets: Space Needle Tickets, Season: All Year Long, Nearby Attractions: Seattle Center, Museum of Pop Culture, Must-Do Experience: The Loupe, Food and Beverages: Yes

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Photo by Smith Tower

Seattle Sightseeing: Smith Tower

Best For Historical Sightseeing
Another attraction up in the sky, Smith Tower also gives visitors a place to do some of the best sightseeing in Seattle. An iconic Seattle location since opening in 1914, you can travel to the thirty-fifth floor on the original Otis elevator to Smith Tower Observatory, Thirty-Fifth-Floor Bar, and Legends of Smith Tower exhibits where you can learn all about Smith Tower’s storied past. Most visitors make sure to have a seat in the legendary Wishing Chair, before exploring the rest of the floor and learning about the tower’s connection to topics like radio, rum-running, and a host of interesting characters and stories. Of course, Smith Tower also provides visitors with stunning 360 degree views of the city, so you will have the opportunity to do some sightseeing as well. It is recommended to save your sightseeing for when you’re eating or enjoying a drink from the speakeasy-inspired bar, so you can enjoy the sights with popular local foods and craft cocktails.

Smith Tower Trip Tips
Reservation or Tickets: Smith Tower Observatory Tickets, Season: All Year Long, Nearby Attractions: Washington Street Boat Harbor, Seattle Aquarium, Must-Do Experience: The Wishing Chair, Food and Beverages: Yes

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Seattle Sightseeing: Seattle Great Wheel

Best For Views Of Elliot Bay
Take a ride on the tallest ferris wheel on the West Coast for excellent views of Elliot Bay, and a day of entertainment at Miner’s Landing. The Seattle Great Wheel is the perfect sightseeing destination for those traveling with kids as a ride on the ferris wheel and a day spent exploring the pier, including the shooting gallery, Wings Over Washington attraction, and the great food options, promises a day of family fun. While you’re up at the top of the ferris wheel, you’ll be able to see all of the excitement in Elliot Bay and great views of the city.

Seattle Great Wheel Trip Tips
Reservation or Tickets: Miner’s Landing Tickets, Season: All Year Long, Nearby Attractions: Waterfront Park, Pike Place Market, Must-Do Experience: Ferris Wheel, Food and Beverages: Yes

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Seattle Sightseeing: Seattle Scenic Seaplane Tour

Best For Most Memorable Sightseeing Experience
To get the best views of Seattle and the surrounding natural areas, one should take to the sky with Kenmore Air for their Seattle Scenic Seaplane Tour. On a seaplane flight in Seattle, you’ll get to soar over one of the most beautiful regions in the world complete with unmatched views and the thrill of flying off of the water. The Seattle Scenic Seaplane Tour will take you on a 20-minute sightseeing flight over the Seattle Metropolitan area where you’ll get to see Lake Union’s famous houseboat communities, the University of Washington campus, magnificent lakeside and seaside estates, professional sports stadiums, and the downtown Seattle skyline on Elliott Bay. The narrated tour will provide you with background information and stories while you soar over the city and take in all the sights through your window on the plane.

Seaplane Tour Trip Tips
Reservation or Tickets: Kenmore Air Reservation, Season: All Year Long, Nearby Attractions: Woodland Park, University of Washington, Must-Do Experience: Narrated Tour, Food and Beverages: No

Content Writer and Social Media Coordinator. I paint, listen to music, and play with my dogs a lot. When I’m not doing all that, I love to read and try new things.

Maeve Miller

Writer, River Travel Magazine