Downtown Seattle offers excitement at every turn. From Pike Place Market to city tours, you won’t walk a block without discovering something new. And of the most incredible experiences, the Seattle Great Wheel and the Space Needle top the list.
Seattle Great Wheel
The Great Wheel has only been around since 2012, yet its iconic presence is sure to make it a historic destination for decades to come. Extending beyond Pier 57, glass-enclosed gondolas on this larger-than-life Ferris Wheel make passengers feel as if they’re floating above the gorgeous waters of Elliott Bay.
At a height of 175 feet, a few rotations on the Wheel provide ample time to experience all that makes Seattle one of the most vibrant places in the world. You’ll see the lively markets and the interaction of thrilled tourists and friendly locals. You’ll marvel at fabulous views of the city. Your jaw will drop at the beautiful ocean blues and snow-capped mountain peaks.
Tickets and Parking
It’s recommended to purchase tickets online and in advance, though they can certainly be purchased in person. Tickets cost $13 + tax for adults and youth ages 12 and older, while kids under 12 may ride for $8.50 + tax. Little ones (up to age 3) ride for free, but they must still hold tickets. These can only be obtained in person, as is true for seniors, who ride for $11 + tax.
Parking is a piece of cake, thanks to Seattle’s user-friendly public parking map. Paid parking is also available along nearby Alaskan Way and on Western Avenue.
There are endless options for amazing meals within walking distance of the Great Wheel (and on your way to the Space Needle). Choose from sushi, pizza, European cuisine, or Asian fusion, to name a few. Of course, little could be better than dining on fresh seafood with an ocean view. Two fabulous seafood restaurants on Pier 57 are recommended by the Seattle Great Wheel: The Fisherman’s Restaurant and Bar and The Crab Pot Restaurant and Bar.
Just over a mile away is the magnificent Space Needle, a futuristic enigma of architecture originally designed for the 1962 World’s Fair. To this day, it remains one of the most mesmerizing structural visions on the continent. The Observation Deck, at a height of 520 feet, grants views that rival those from your wildest dreams. Indeed, there is little you can’t see from your 360-degree vantage point.
Tickets and Parking
Tickets purchased on the day of your visit may be limited, so it’s wise to plan ahead. General admission tickets start at $14 (ages 5-12), $19 (seniors at 65+), and $22 (ages 13-64); other packages are also available. Here, too, your hosts make parking as breezy as possible – valet costs little more than nearby parking garages. The following parking rates are valid for three hours: General Valet – $25. SkyCity Guests – $12. Observation Deck Guests – $16. Chihuly Garden & Glass Guests – $16. Each additional hour costs $3.
If you’ve sampled the many options downtown, try the phenomenal restaurant inside the Space Needle. SkyCity is open for brunch Friday – Sunday, luncheon on Tuesday – Thursday, and dinner every day of the week. There may be no better view with your dinner in the entire Pacific Northwest.
And at the end of an amazing day, don’t fret. Your vacation rental home awaits you with open arms.