We booked our tickets to San Francisco with a 22 hour overlay in Seattle. But what can you do in Seattle in only 22 hours? Plenty! Since our flight was almost 10 hours and there’s a 9 hour time difference between Amsterdam & Seattle, we knew we would probably be jet-lagged and didn’t want to fully pack the day with activities. Just to make sure that we get a proper rest for our early flight to San Francisco the next morning.
Some tips in advance:
- Book a stay downtown: you will be closer to all the attractions & sights to see and can utilise your time better
- Book tickets in advance: if you are sure that you will be visiting certain attractions, book your tickets in advance online to avoid standing in line
- Leave your luggage at the airport: you can leave your luggage in a secured lock at the airport and take only a change of clothing with you to your stay so that you don’t have to drag your luggage around and can start exploring the city right away
- Link Light Rail: want to save a $40 taxi ride & avoid traffic from the airport to downtown? Take the Link Light Rail into the city for only $3 one-way. It takes about 30 minutes. You can take the same back to the airport the next morning. Check their website for times.
And now for the good stuff! These are the stops we made while exploring the city:
Stop #1 – Seattle Waterfront
Go down to the waterfront and walk around the shops, have some food and sit near the front to enjoy the scenery and watch the boats pass by.
Stop #1.5 – The very first Starbucks
Up for a coffee break to beat the jetlag? Stop at the very first Starbucks. Be prepared for the very very VERY long line. Everyone wants to order a coffee here to take that perfect Instagram picture and prove that they visited the first Starbucks. Tip: you can also just take a picture from the outside instead of going in, the coffee tastes the same at other Starbucks.
Stop #2 – Pike Place Market
This is just your regular Sunday market with an extra tint. Just make sure to stop at Pike Place Fish Co. to watch their fish show.
Stop #3 – Gum Wall
The gum wall might be a bit tricky to find, but it’s right under the market. When you pass the Pike Place Fish Co. find the stairs to go down and let the smell lead you to the wall. Make sure to bring enough gum so you can have your spot on the wall!
Stop #4 – Olympic Sculpture Park
If you’re not too long in Seattle and have just enough time for a run or a leisury walk, head down to the Olympic Sculpture Park. There are not too many sculptures, but the view is spectacular and you can get a nice picture of the Space Needle
Stop #5 – Space Needle
There’s a long waiting line for the Space Needle, so make sure you book your tickets in advance. The park around it is also quite nice to hang out. Lay down on the grass and get the perfect IG picture with the Space Needle high above you. Did you know that the Space Needle is only the 3rd tallest building in Seattle? If you rather have a better view of Seattle, check out our stop #6.
Stop #5.5 – Chihuly Gardens
The Chihuly gardens are right on the side of the Space Needle, so if you’re planning on visiting the Space Needle you might as well pop in to see the gardens.
Tickets range from $19 – $49 for the Space Needle and the Chihuly Gardens, depending on the time of visit. Check the prices out on their website.
Stop #6 – Sky View Observatory
With it’s 76-story the Columbia Center is the highest building in Seattle. The Sky View Observatory is located on the 73rd floor and gives a 360 degrees view of Seattle. And the best part? It’s only $14.75 to enter regardless of the time.
We only visited the above six stops and did most of it walking. If you have more time and fancy taking a taxi, you can also visit the below:
- Stop #7 – Kerry Park
- Stop #8 – Fremont Troll
- Stop #9 – Boeing Factory
We will visit those next time we’re in Seattle, because it definitely wasn’t our last visit!