Your Guide to Seattle's Many Neighborhoods
Seattle is home to many vibrant neighborhoods, each with its own unique character and charm. There's plenty to do right outside your doorstep at Kimpton Palladian Hotel. From the bustling streets of Capitol Hill to the serene beauty of Queen Anne, there's a neighborhood here for everyone. Explore the excitment of the Emerald City through these iconic neighborhoods:
- Belltown: The Kimpton Palladian Hotel’s own neighborhood of Belltown is the heart of where hip happens in downtown Seattle. Don’t just take our word for it, check out this article. From back-alley speakeasies to modern art galleries, Belltown is eclectic, urban, and bursting at the seams with art, music, and fashion.
- West Edge: Stretching from Pioneer Square to Belltown between Alaskan Way and 2nd Avenue, the West Edge boundaries are small, but the attractions here are anything but. You’ll find bucket-list destinations like Pike Place Market, the Seattle Art Museum, and Benaroya Hall, along with 250 retailers and 170 restaurants.
- Retail Core: Just blocks away from the hotel, Seattle’s retail core beckons. Whether you need to pick up a new outfit for that big meeting or are just window-shopping, you’re sure to find whatever you need — options abound from indoor malls to haute couture boutiques to trendy apparel shops. A few of the highlights include outdoors brands like Arc’teryx and Mountain Hardwear, heritage department stores such as Nordstrom and Macy’s, and specialty labels including Anthropologie.
- Waterfront: Just a couple of blocks away, the waterfront is a must-visit. Stroll along the promenade and pier, catch the ferry to Bainbridge Island, or visit the sea otters at the Seattle Aquarium. For a lovely walk or bike ride, head to Olympic Sculpture Park, offering breathtaking views of the bay and Olympic Mountains as well as a whimsical labyrinth of verdant grassy knolls, paths, and memorable artwork.
- Queen Anne: A residential neighborhood with a strong slate of attractions, Queen Anne is where you’ll find the world-famous Seattle Center (housing the Space Needle, Chihuly Garden and Glass, the Pacific Science Center, and much more). On Queen Anne Avenue, taste-test the oils and vinegars at Queen Anne Olive Oil Company, pick up a good read at Queen Anne Book Company, and sit down for a cup of rooibos and a South African milk tart at Cederberg Tea House.
- Capitol Hill: Adjacent to downtown, Capitol Hill buzzes day and night with activity. There’s good throwback fun to be had at Garage, a bowling alley for grown-ups, and at carnival-themed bar Unicorn, with a pinball arcade, a photo booth, and treats like corn dogs and funnel cakes. In the daytime, the homey Ada’s Technical Books & Café is a great place to geek out over science and engineering reads, while Volunteer Park features beautiful panoramic views of the city from atop its water tower.
- Ballard: An old Scandinavian neighborhood turned foodie hotbed, Ballard has plenty of charms, including the Ballard Locks, where you can watch boats go through a water elevator that separates the saltwater from freshwater; the beachy Golden Gardens; and The Walrus and the Carpenter, the place for oysters. The waterfront neighborhood still has Scandinavian influences peeking through, which you’ll find in full force at the Nordic Heritage Museum.
- Fremont: Residents here are known as Fremonsters and the neighborhood’s motto is De Libertas Quirkas (“freedom to be peculiar”). So you can imagine that it’s just a little eccentric. You’ll see that in the can’t-miss Fremont Troll under the Aurora Bridge, the larger-than-life statue of Vladimir Lenin, and the rocket that was originally made to use in the Cold War. Visit the farmers market on Sundays for a smorgasbord of sights and sounds.
- Pioneer Square: Seattle’s original downtown was ravaged by the Great Fire in 1889, but it’s now a thriving spot for artists, boutique shops, and buzzed-about restaurants. History buffs will enjoy the Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park, which traces the journey of the stampeders headed through Seattle on their way to try to strike it rich. If you’re hungry, try the Persian food at Cherry Street Public House or grab or a cheesesteak at Tat’s Delicatessen.
- West Seattle: This laid-back neighborhood is home to Alki Beach, a pretty place for kayaking, in-line skating, biking, strolling, or just sitting and soaking up a little sun. See great views of the Seattle skyline from Hamilton Viewpoint Park, and make sure to save room for weekend brunch at Salty’s, known for its never-ending selection of crab legs, seafood chowder, hash browns, potato salad, pasta, seasonal cheesecake, cinnamon rolls, and more.
- South Lake Union: Perhaps the fastest-changing neighborhood in Seattle, South Lake Union is the site of Amazon’s headquarters and seemingly has a new business opening weekly. The interactive MOHAI (Museum of History & Industry) is a great place to get the dish on the city’s roots, while next door, the Center for Wooden Boats offers free public sails on Sundays. Grab a box of Lady Yum macarons and enjoy floating by the seaplanes and houseboats on Lake Union.
- SoDo: South of downtown, the big attractions here are the sports stadiums, including CenturyLink Field (Seattle Seahawks and Sounders FC) and T-Mobile Park (Seattle Mariners). When you’re not catching a game, plan your next expedition and rent gear at The Adventure Hub & Winery, which houses Evergreen Escapes, Kaf Adventures, and Elsom Cellars. Then grab some performance-forward necessities from Outdoor Research or Filson, both of which have flagship stores here.
- Georgetown: Georgetown was once an industrial neighborhood, and while it still retains some grit, it’s more industrial chic than anything these days. The brewing scene is strong, with places like Georgetown Brewing Company and Lowercase Brewing providing a wide variety of lagers, ales, and seasonal sippers. For a fun activity slightly off the beaten path, visit SANCA for flying trapeze lessons.
- Bellevue: The anchor city of Seattle’s Eastside, Bellevue is a shopper’s paradise — between Bellevue Square and The Bravern alone, you’ll find everything from the Apple Store and Microsoft Store to David Lawrence and Tory Burch. Take a cooking class at Whisk, enjoy nature at the free Bellevue Botanical Garden, and see the rotating exhibits at Bellevue Art Museum.
- University District: Fueled by the energy of the University of Washington, this neighborhood has plenty to pursue, scholarly and otherwise. Take a pleasant stroll against a backdrop of stately buildings on campus; drop into The Henry for a look at boundary-pushing art; and explore The Ave (University Way), peppered with indie boutiques, quick-service restaurants, and the feeling of college life.