What is Seattle Known For? 22 Ways to Get to Know The Emerald City

Seattle holds a special place in the hearts of everyone at Revolution PR. From the gorgeous scenery to the delectable food, there are so many things to explore. Check out this blog article Revolution PR is featured in on Redfin and learn more about the wonderful Emerald City.

Published on January 6, 2023 by Julia Weaver

If you’re considering living in Seattle, you might be familiar with the city for its bustling waterfront, lush evergreen forests, and the picturesque San Juan Islands. Seattle is also known as the birthplace of Starbucks, the Space Needle, and the flying fish at Pike Place Market. But these are just a few of the things that set Seattle apart from other major metropolises. So what else is Seattle known for? From waterfront activities and beautiful green spaces to the incredible art scene and access to nature, you’ll quickly discover countless more reasons why Seattle is such a desirable place to live.

Maybe you’ve just moved and are renting in one of Seattle’s many neighborhoods, perhaps Phinney Ridge or Montlake, and want to get to know your city better. Or, maybe you’re curious about what it’s like to live here before relocating to the Emerald City. Either way, this city has so much to offer.

What is Seattle known for?

The West Seattle neighborhood

“The neighborhood along Beach Drive features several marine parks that are easily accessible from Constellation, Commorant Cove, Emma Schmitz View Point to Lincoln Park,” says writer Rhonda Porter at The Beach Drive Blog. “Cormorant Cove has a beach where people launch kayaks and paddle boards and leave small treasures for others to find. It’s not unusual to see people lined up with their binoculars to watch Orcas from Emma Schmitz, and Lincoln Park is a jewel on its own with a saltwater swimming pool and trails to explore.” 

Just 15 minutes from downtown, West Seattle is a laid-back community with its own distinctive character. With peaceful beaches to walk along while enjoying the Seattle skyline and Bainbridge Island, the miles of beachfront offer a great opportunity to get outdoors. The Junction is where you can find shopping, dining, concerts, and more.

The temperate weather

“Seattle is unique because the weather is seldom harsh, so you can enjoy being outside any time of the year,” says Susannah Dhamdhere, local restaurant owner of Lassi and Spice. “Every season has unique beauty, and the woods and water are lovely year-round. With our moderate climate, there’s rarely a day when you can’t take your dog for a walk or stop by your favorite local coffee shop.”

The spectacular views

Photographer Lisette Wolter Mckinley of Finding the Extraordinary in the Ordinary shares, “My favorite part about living in Seattle is the many jaw-dropping beautiful places there are right outside my door. From parks with mountain views to homes with sound views and everywhere with territorial views. There is something pretty magical about running past a seal pup warming itself on the beach, hearing a harbor seal barking in the distance, searching the horizon for an orca pod, or spotting a seaplane buzzing overhead. Water is the lifeblood of Seattle, and on a sunny day you can see kayakers, SUP, ferries, and sailboats jockeying to enjoy the best part of Seattle: the water.” 

Adventure around every corner

“Without question, the best thing about Seattle is that adventure is around every corner,” says travel blogger thekarebear. “Not only do we have nearly 500 parks, but also ample access to the saltwater Puget Sound, freshwater lakes, and mountain views. It’s no wonder many hikers, bikers, and paddlers thrive in the Emerald City.”

Endless opportunities to get outside

“My favorite thing about Seattle is the ability to explore many diverse outdoor spaces,” shares lifestyle blogger Sierra Lifestyle. “With three of the country’s best National Parks at your doorstep, there are endless opportunities for hiking, backpacking, and adventuring in the summer, paired with world-class skiing in the winter. But if the mountains aren’t your thing, you can still enjoy the outdoors by staying local to Seattle and experiencing parks and beaches like Golden Gardens and Alki, where Volleyball games, unreal sunsets, and evening bonfires are the norm. From the ocean to the mountains, there aren’t many cities where you can enjoy so many different outdoor activities in one place. That’s why I love Seattle.”

Discovery Park

“Discovery Park, located in Seattle’s quaint Magnolia neighborhood, is both expansive and scenic,” says local blogger Living Healthy in Seattle. “Stroll through the lush evergreens and explore the rocky beach while taking meditative views of Elliott Bay and Puget Sound. Pack a picnic including locally brewed San Juan Seltzers plus a scrumptious Macrina Bakery baguette, or swing by a Madison Valley favorite, Cafe Flora, for seasonal vegetarian fare enjoyed by omnivores and plant-based folks alike. Their refreshing seasonal cocktails are hard to pass up.”

Discovery Park is an easy way to escape the hustle and bustle of the city and has something for everyone, boasting views of Mount Rainier, the Olympics, and the Cascades. Walk along the 12 miles of walking trails leading to open meadows, forests, and the historic West Point lighthouse.

The Olympic Sculpture Park

This award-winning, nine-acre sculpture park on the waterfront is Seattle’s largest downtown green space and is about one mile north of the Seattle Art Museum.

Local artist Melanie Biehle shares, “The Olympic Sculpture Park is one of my favorite places to visit in Seattle. I love that you get to experience art and nature simultaneously. Viewing Alexander Calder’s Eagle with Elliott Bay and the Olympic Mountains as a backdrop is breathtaking.”

The community

“When you close your eyes and think Seattle, what likely pops into your head are the flying fish at the infamous Pike Place Market, ferry boats, and ‘Grey’s Anatomy,’ but Seattle is so much more than five blocks of tourism,” states Audrey Marlett, Seattle Food and Drink Blogger at The Life of Auds. “Seattle is alternative rock, inclusivity, small business, and community. You see this in amazing businesses such as The Marble RoomTrophy Cupcakes,  KEPX x Caffe VitaLa Fontina Siciliana, and City Sweats.”

Pike Place Market

“It might not be a hidden gem of Seattle, but without a doubt, Pike Place Market is one of the best things to do in Seattle. Whether you like history, culture, art, views, or food, the market has it all,” says Kelly, local blogger of Our Adventure Journal. “Pike Place Market has over 500 vendors, so no two visits to the market are alike. In addition to selling local produce, food, and crafts, you can buy coffee at the oldest-operating Starbucks store, check out the gum wall, and admire views of the Seattle waterfront. The market is dynamic and captures the spirit of Seattle, so it’s a place we often visit.”

Seattle coffee

“When friends and family come to visit, they always laugh when I say I’m taking them to my favorite coffee place because it could be one of six places,” explains Kara McKeage, Founder and CEO of Pepper’s Personal Assistants. “Being a Seattle native, I prefer the classics. In no particular order, Vivace’s sidewalk espresso stand on Broadway, Monorail’s espresso stand on Pike St, the hidden gem of Lighthouse Roasters in Fremont, Cafe Vita at KEXP or Pike Street, and All City Coffee in Georgetown.

Ways to get to know Seattle

Go on a food tour

One of the many reasons to move to Seattle is its thriving food scene. Eat Seattle Tours has food-tasting tours of Pike Place Market and South Lake Union. These tours are led by chef guides who share their culinary perspective from the commercial kitchen to highlight some of the incredible restaurants in the Seattle area.

Enjoy dinner and a show at The Pink Door

“The Pink Door is a must-visit restaurant in Seattle–it’s the most unique restaurant in town, even though some may consider it a tourist trap,” states blogger Travels With Elle. “Tourist trap or not, it’s a ton of fun. This iconic spot not only serves up great Italian food but also provides vintage jazz vibes and amusing entertainment daily. From the trapeze lady to lively jazz ensembles and cabaret shows to tap-dancing saxophone players, you never know what’s in store for the night. No matter what entertainment show is featured, it will keep you entertained throughout your entire meal.”

Explore Columbia City

“Most people only visit South Seattle during SeaFair, but there’s so much more to Columbia City and the surrounding area,” says local photographer Suzi Pratt. “From the light rail stop, you can walk to historic downtown Columbia City, dine at neighborhood favorites like Geraldine’s, Island Soul, and Jackalope, or grab a coffee and browse records at Empire Espresso. Afterward, walk or bike down to Genesee Park via the playfields, and stroll south on Lake Washington Blvd. It’s 1.7 miles to Seward Park, where hiking trails wind through old-growth forests with access to dozens of lakeshore beaches along the way.”

Grab a quick bite at one of the many food trucks

With over 500 food trucks in the Seattle area, our food mobile vendor community offers cuisine from all over the world. From Uzbekistan to BBQ, Mediterranean to Laos, the Seattle food truck scene is a great way to support local businesses and try something new.

Visit SeattleFoodTruck.com to find where your next meal is parked.

Stroll through the Seattle neighborhoods

“Seattle offers a little bit of everything done impeccably well,” states Sarah Adler, entrepreneur and founder of  Simply Real Health. “Whether it’s wandering the charming streets of Ballard, ducking in and out of shops with hot matcha in hand in the bustle and buzz of the Sunday farmers market. Or maybe it’s strolling through the quiet city back streets of Pike Place with Mt. Rainier and the water keeping you company as you stumble upon a hidden lunch spot. Or, perhaps you pop over to one of the islands for a bakery stop or early dinner. One thing is for sure, each neighborhood is unique with its own charm and pocket of amazing food to explore.”

Enjoy nature

“What’s great about Seattle is that there are so many opportunities to enjoy nature right outside your backyard,” shares Empathic Executive Coach Susan Choi. “Whether that’s visiting the Arboretum and enjoying a seasonal stroll, picnicking at Gas Works park while watching the sunset, or taking the Mukilteo Ferry to Whidbey Island to visit Earth Sanctuary, there are a multitude of ways to enjoy the natural side of what Seattle has to offer. If you’re an adventurous soul, you can even venture up to the North Cascades National Park for a weekend of hiking.”

Take the Bainbridge Ferry

Conner Cayson, digital marketer at Find Me In Seattle, recommends getting on the Bainbridge Ferry out of the Downtown Seattle ferry terminal. “If you opt to bring your car along, it’s going to cost around $40 roundtrip, or if you walk on, it’s just under $10 total both ways. The trip is about 30 minutes and provides a spectacular view from the water of the downtown skyline.”

Cayson goes on to explain, “When you arrive on Bainbridge Island, there are cafes and wine bars, locally owned shops, and a few tasty restaurants. I recommend making a dinner reservation at Ba Sa, an elevated Vietnamese restaurant at the end of Winslow Way. They have a stylish interior, some outdoor seating, a great bar, and very tasty food. It’s walking distance from the ferry terminal and provides the opportunity to see the main street on the island as well.”

Explore the restaurant scene

“Seattle has arguably one of the best restaurant scenes in the country, bringing flavors of the world together in a delicious melting pot,” explains Revolution PR, a public relations agency in Seattle. “Spend a day eating your way across the city, starting with a non-jittery boost of caffeine and healing adaptogens from Matcha Magic in Bellevue. Next, make your way to Bounty Kitchen for a nourishing breakfast sandwich or Fat’s Chicken and Waffles for the best waffle in the city. Then onto Just Poké for a sustainably-sourced seafood or vegetarian lunch that won’t weigh you down. Enjoy an evening dining experience with specialty cocktails and authentic Italian at Coltiva Pizzeria e Barra. And, because there’s always room for ice cream, don’t miss Frankie & Jo’s plant-based, gluten-free ice cream with locations around the city.”

Splurge on a meal with a view

“I think one of the best things to do in Seattle is to experience the restaurants with their views,” shares Kara Myers, recipe blogger of Sweetly Splendid. “Some of the best food I’ve ever had with unique views was in Seattle. I love the Japanese A5 Wagyu at Daniel’s Broiler, which gives you a beautiful view of downtown Bellevue. The mashed potatoes at Salish Lodge are incredible, with a view from the fireside tables of Snoqualmie Falls you can’t find anywhere else. Farine Bakery is a place you can enjoy delicious breakfast (I recommend the Liege waffle) on a quaint downtown patio. You can’t miss Salty’s, where you experience delicious, casual seafood with an impeccable view of the Seattle skyline.”

Visit Beecher’s Handmade Cheese

“One of our favorite quintessentially Seattle activities is visiting Pike Place Market in Downtown Seattle and watching the cheesemaker’s process of cheddaring at Beecher’s Handmade Cheese, home of the cheddar-style Flagship cheese,” shares mobile cheese shop Street Cheese. “You can watch from the glass windows outside or come inside and have a snack while you watch–although gluten-free folks like us have to find food elsewhere. For us, that means hitting Ballard, Seattle’s traditionally Scandinavian neighborhood. If it’s early, we go to Wildflours Gluten-Free Bakery for breakfast or brunch and to grab a few loaves of bread and pastries to enjoy with some of Washington’s many local cheeses (we have 50 licensed creameries in our state). Or, if it’s later in the day, we can’t stop ourselves from eating at the Viking-themed Skal Beer Hall. Although Skal does have many floury delights on their menu, there is plenty to eat for the gluten-challenged, and everything is fantastic.”

Visit the Woodland Park Zoo

“Seattle’s Woodland Park Zoo is one of the city’s most popular attractions. Here, there’s so much to see and do that you’ll easily spend hours exploring the whole zoo,” explains food and restaurant site Noms Magazine. “Just animals alone, the zoo has over 900 creatures for you to learn and spectate in their specially created bioclimatic zones, which best try to replicate their natural habitats. That means having the opportunity to wave at a towering Giraffe, speedy Jaguar, Penguins from the desert coast of Peru, and many more. We love and recommend the zoo because it’s so rare to see some of these animals right before you. It makes such a fun experience together with family or a loved one. Before leaving, be sure to take a relaxing stroll around the rose garden with almost 3000 roses.”

Have date night in downtown Seattle

“I look fondly back on my years living in Belltown with my husband before we bought our first home, so one of my favorite things to do in Seattle is to have a downtown date day and night,” shares blogger and photographer Cortney Bigelow of The Grey Edit. “Roaming through Pike Place Market for flowers and local artisan shopping followed by champagne and oysters at Maximilien. Wandering through Post Alley and grabbing a cozy cocktail at Zig Zag along Pike Place Climb. Stopping by your hotel (either Hotel Theodore or Palihotel) to freshen up before a night out — drinks and dinner at The George within the Fairmont Olympic. When you wake up, grab coffee at Storyville, breakfast at the Crumpet Shop in Pike Place, and roam the waterfront towards Elliott Bay Park to soak up the smells of the Puget Sound and buzz of the city before going back home.”