Thank you, Visit Seattle, for sponsoring this post about things to do in Seattle with kids. All opinions are my own.
In December, I was lucky enough to get to bring my family to Seattle. Visit Seattle created an amazing itinerary for us and we got to experience a lot of really neat things.
We stayed at the lovely Loews 1000 hotel, which is located downtown, only about a mile from Pike Place Market. The hotel was the perfect place to stay because the room was spacious and it was close to all of the major attractions. My kids loved the room because it had a luxurious bathtub and cozy queen beds.
This was my first time visiting Seattle, so I wasn’t sure what to expect. I didn’t have many preconceptions and there were only a few things I knew I wanted to see. I also wasn’t sure if Seattle would be kid-friendly, but it definitely was. Since we had such a great time, I wanted to share the 5 fun things to do in Seattle with kids. Also, make sure to watch my YouTube video so you can hear more.
1. Seattle Gum Wall
Located in the lower Post Alley, just underneath Pike Place Market, the gum wall is worth a quick trip. Of all the things in Seattle, this was the one thing my kids were most excited to see. They also loved that they got to chew gum in order to participate. I don’t know about your kids, but my kids are at the age when they think gum is the coolest thing. We did have fun sucking on our blow pops to get to the center and add the gum to the wall.
Ironically, my kids opted not to actually put their gum on the wall. I think it grossed them out too much. I did add mine to the wall, but I found a completely empty spot so I didn’t have to touch anyone else’s gum. Honestly, it is pretty gross if you think about it, but it also is a sight to see. It’s really colorful and pretty ingenious how people turned their gum into a living art installation.
2. Pike Place Market
Probably one of the most iconic things in Seattle, we started our first morning exploring Pike Place Market. There are tons of cute shops and places you could eat. You could also grab a coffee at the first Starbucks. We also stopped to pick up a delicious French pastry at Le Panier – I’d highly recommend stopping in this shop. I was dying to try one of the almond croissants, but I was already too full from breakfast. However, my kiddos did enjoy pastries from there.
Unfortunately, we didn’t get to see the fish throwing that you’ve seen on TV. However, we still had fun looking at all of the interesting seafood lined throughout Pike Place Market and checking out all the other cute shops and food stands.
3. Seattle Aquarium
One thing you should definitely do in Seattle with kids is to stop by the aquarium. My kids absolutely loved checking out all of the tanks and interesting fish. It is located right along the water, near the Seattle Great Wheel, so it was a fun way to spend the morning. First, we went to the aquarium and then we made our way to the Great Wheel. Both sites are definitely kid-friendly and a lot of fun for the whole family.
4. Space Needle
I mentioned the Space Needle in my post about things to do in Seattle during the holidays, but I had to include it again. It is an iconic and touristy thing to do in Seattle, but for good reason. It really was a special experience. The view of the city is amazing and my kids really enjoyed walking around and taking in the great views. They also loved the moveable floor.
5. Seattle Great Wheel
The first day we arrived in Seattle, we saw the Great Wheel on our walk to dinner. My kids immediately asked if they could go on it. We knew that it was planned for our last day in Seattle so we promised them we’d get there. I’m so glad we kept the Great Wheel as one of the last stops on our Seattle trip. It was so much fun and the views of the city were really amazing. The only drawback is that the Great Wheel is quite expensive. If you want to save a bit, I would suggest either doing the Great Wheel or the Space Needle. Both offer really gorgeous views of the city, but you don’t necessarily need both if money is an issue.
Two Other Places I Loved in Seattle
Chihuly Garden and Glass
Although I would not call this place very kid-friendly, I definitely would not miss the Chihuly Garden if I were you. Of all the things we saw in Seattle, this was probably my favorite. It’s not the most kid-friendly because they are not allowed to touch the glass and also, it’s more of a glass museum or art gallery, which are not always the most kid-friendly places. My kids did enjoy looking at the glass sculptures, but their attention spans were short. I wish I had visited the Chihuly Garden on my own because I had to rush through it so quickly to make sure my kids were behaving. Despite a shorter trip than I would like, I still really enjoyed seeing the Chihuly Garden and I’d definitely go back the next time I’m in Seattle.
One other place that was fun for my kids but also fun for me was the Museum of Pop Culture. I personally enjoyed checking out the 90s music exhibitions, especially the Nirvana and Prince exhibits. My kids enjoyed the Minecraft exhibit. Overall, this museum did work for the whole family, although my kids did lose interest fairly quickly. If I ever go back to Seattle, I’d probably try to visit MoPop on my own so I could spend more time at the exhibit. If you are looking for a kid-centric museum, I’d highly encourage you to check out the Pacific Science Center. It’s a wonderful museum, especially for kids. I already spend so much of my work life in museums that I opted not to take them to a science museum. But that’s only because I’ve been to so many. If you’re fairly new to the world of science museums, I’d highly encourage you to go. It’s definitely a fun thing to do in Seattle with kids.
Looking for more Seattle stories? Here’s one about Seattle during the holidays.