The birthplace of modern Seattle has a colorful history marked by economic and geological fluctuations. The Great Fire of 1889 virtually destroyed it, before Alaska’s Gold Rush breathed new life and Victorian architecture into the mix. The old warehouses and narrow streets gave rise to a thriving loft arts scene in the 1980s and 90s. While rents have skyrocketed and developers continue to renovate the grand façades of relic buildings, the galleries, cafés, and entrepreneurial spirit remain. The district stands as a testament to a city’s survival, particularly after a devastating earthquake in 2001.

Elliott Bay Book Co

  • 101 S Main St

  • 206 624 6600

  • 9:30am– 10pm Mon–Sat, 11am– 7pm Sun

Bill Speidel’s Under-ground Tour

  • 608 1st Ave

  • 206 613 3108

Grand Central Bakery

  • 214 1st Ave S

  • 206 622 3644

  • $

Merchant’s Café

  • 109 Yesler Way

  • 206 624 1515

Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park

  • 319 2nd Ave S

  • 206 220 4240

Nisqually Earthquake

In February 2001, Pioneer Square and the entire Puget Sound region experienced a 40-second earthquake, measuring a whopping 6.8 on the Richter scale. Several otherwise sturdy and fireproof brick-and-mortar constructions from post1889 met their match. Falling bricks and façades crushed cars and damaged many edifices .

If the weather’s rainy or cold, curl up under high ceilings by Grand Central Bakery’s cozy fireplace with a good book and a tasty meal or dessert.

Top 10 Sights
  1. Smith Tower

    Built in 1914 by typewriter tycoon L.C. Smith, at 42 stories this skyscraper was once the tallest edifice west of New York. Ride the hand-operated elevator to the observation deck for great views.

  2. Elliott Bay Book Company

    A bibliophile’s dream destination, this is one of Seattle’s best booksellers. Expect an erudite and informed staff, an incredible selection, a large café, and a notable series of author’s readings.

  3. Bill Speidel’s Underground Tour

    Deliberately unusual in name and nature, this out-fit presents a remarkable look at Pioneer Square’s underground history. The Great Fire, tidal patterns, and poor sewage design forced citizens to convert second stories into first, shown through this subterranean 90-minute walk starting from Pioneer Building.

  4. First Thursdays

    On the first Thursday of each month, from 6pm to 8pm, galleries sponsor a well-attended art walk. Patrons can talk directly to the artists about their displayed works. An ideal starting point is Occidental Way between Main and Jackson Street, where you can find many of the galleries and upscale shops.

  5. Pioneer Square

    This cobblestone triangle of land bordered by Yesler Way and First Avenue is notable for a Tlingit totem pole, and a statue of Seattle’s namesake, Chief Sealth. It also features an iron-and-glass pergola built in 1909 that once marked the entrance to the “finest underground restroom in the United States”.

    Cedar totem poles
  6. Grand Central Bakery

    This is the artisinal bakery and café that helped make hand-rolled European-style bread a mainstay in Seattle.

  7. Waterfall Garden

    In the Northwest, water is everywhere. Step inside this tiny private park to meditate on a man-made paean to tumbling water.

  8. Merchant’s Café

    Popular and still prospering after 100 years, Merchant’s Café is Seattle’s oldest restau­rant with Victorian decor and hearty meals.

  9. Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park

    A versatile display of exhibits, films, and photographs emphasize Seattle’s role as the closest US city to Alaskan gold, and as a crucial supply post for claim stakers .

  10. Skid Road

    Henry Yesler’s logging mill sat at the foot of what is now Yesler Way, a hill as long and steep as any in San Francisco. He used it to slide timber down to the wharf. When Pioneer Square’s economy tumbled, Skid Road came to signify deso­lation and despair.

Top search
- Foods That Cause Miscarriage
- Losing Weight In A Week With Honey
- Can You Eat Crab Meat During Pregnancy?
- 4 Kinds Of Fruit That Can Increase Risk Of Miscarriage
- Some Drinks Pregnant Women Should Say No With
- Signs Proving You Have Boy Pregnancy
- Why Do Pregnant Women Have Stomachache When Eating?
- Top Foods That Pregnant Women Should Be Careful Of
- 6 Kinds Of Vegetable That Increase Risk Of Miscarriage
- Seattle's Top 10 : Elliott Bay Waterfront
- Barcelona’s Top 10 : Barcelona Cathedral
- Barcelona’s Top 10 : La Rambla
- Bravo Barcelona: Most prominent city in Spain
- Toronto's Top 10 : Toronto Islands
- Toronto's Top 10 : CN Tower & Its Views
- Take Flight (Part 2) : Nantes, Cape Town, Dubai, Galapagos & New Zealand
- Take Flight (Part 1) : Vietnam, Peru, Myanmar, The Artic & Iceland
- Loving Las Vegas (Part 1)
- Loving Las Vegas (Part 1)
- Boston's Top 10 : Boston Common & Public Garden
- Boston's Top 10 : Faneuil Hall Marketplace
- New York's Top 10 : Rockefeller Center (part 2) - Rockefeller Center Artworks & The Building of Rockefeller Center
- New York's Top 10 : Rockefeller Center (part 1)
- Year of Fun (part 2)
- Year of Fun (part 1)
- Paris Top 10 : Musée d’Orsay (part 1)
- London's Top 10 : National Portrait Gallery
- London's Top 10 : National Gallery
- Berlin's Top 10 : Potsdamer Platz (part 2) - Exhibitions in the Filmmuseum & Europe’s largest building site
Top keywords
Miscarriage Pregnant Pregnancy Pregnancy day by day Pregnancy week by week Losing Weight Stress Placenta Makeup Collection
Top 5
- 5 Ways to Support Your Baby Development
- 5 Tips for Safe Exercise During Pregnancy
- Four Natural Ways Alternative Medicine Can Help You Get Pregnant (part 2)
- Four Natural Ways Alternative Medicine Can Help You Get Pregnant (part 1)
- Is Your Mental Health Causing You to Gain Weight (part 2) - Bipolar Disorder Associated with Weight Gain