1. Coffee Town

    Seattle’s signature beverage comes in myriad forms. The rampant availability of whole bean, latte, espresso, and basic drip created a coffee craze even before Starbucks went global. Though Seattelites love their streetside espresso carts and neighborhood cafés, the city is also home to Starbucks and its major competitors, Tully’s and Seattle’s Best Coffee.

    Cold coffee
  2. Gardening

    Gardeners take advantage of the weather to grow astounding varieties of plants and trees that thrive in the mist and drizzle. Despite the short growing season, there’s enough sunshine to keep urban pea patches and botanical gardens as thick and green as the rainforests are tall.

  3. Kites at GasWorks Park

    A favorite gathering spot is a hill overlooking Lake Union at GasWorks Park. The wind patterns at this point attract kite flyers of all ages.

  4. Public Art

    Public art seems to grow like weeds, particularly in Fremont. Even bus tours cruise by the incongruous collection here — dinosaur topiaries, a Volkswagen-crushing troll under a highway, and a statue of Lenin, from the former Soviet Union. Other installations include Waiting for the Interurban, depicting bored commuters.

  5. Code Warriors

    Microsoft, its supporting vendors, and upstart competitors still employ thousands of computer programmers and developers. Writing the killer application inspires many an entrepreneur. The laptop user at the café table next to yours may well be the next software mogul.

  6. Greenlake Jogs

    Greenlake attracts health and nature-conscious visitors from around the city. A verdant setting and wide 2.8-mile (4.5-km) path encircling the lake attracts walkers, runners, bikers, and babystroller-pushing parents come rain or shine.

    Visitors at Greenlake

    Boaters on Greenlake
  7. Readings & Lectures

    Many authors make their home here, and historical fiction, music biography, and science fiction are just a few popular genres that have taken root. Pioneer Square’s Elliott Bay Book Company sponsors one of the region’s most treasured reading and lecture series.

  8. Historic Preservation

    Seattle maintains a vital link to its past through architecture, due to the remarkable success of its preservationists. Pike Place Market is one shining example, and several downtown theaters and 19th-century structures in Pioneer Square have achieved landmark status. Seattle neighborhoods reveal several restored Craftsman-style homes.

  9. Boating

    An aerial view of Seattle reveals that this town practically floats in a vast watershed. Natural and man-made canals, rivers, lakes, and estuaries abound. Pleasure boats and commercial ships of all kinds ply the waterways of one of the busiest and most picturesque maritime communities in the United States.

  10. Civil Unrest

    When the WTO met in Seattle in 1999, thousands of demonstrators turned the city upside down. But that was only the most recent chapter in a long history of civil disobedience. In the early 20th century, the International Workers of the World unionized logging and mining industries. Violent riots erupted in 1916 in Everett and in 1919 in Centralia, cities to the north and south of Seattle.

Top 10 Cafés

  1. B&O Espresso

    A destination for coffee, complete meals, and rich desserts piled high. 

  2. Bauhaus Books & Café

  3. Caffé Lladro

    This local chain captures the basic espresso requirements: consistent pours and loyal clientele.

    • 435 15th E

    • 206 267 0551

  4. Zeitgeist

    They make exceptional espresso and also sponsor art shows.

    • 171 S Jackson

    • 206 583 0497

  5. Elliott Bay Books & Café

  6. Fremont Coffee Company

    You’ll see denizens using Wifi technology with their laptops. The coffee is superb.

    • 459 N 36th

    • 206 632 3633

  7. Lighthouse Roasters

    They make rich drinks from freshly roasted coffee beans.

    • 400 N 43rd

    • 206 634 3140

  8. Allegro Espresso Bar

    Keeps students, professors, and locals stoked on caffeine brewed to perfection.

    • 4214 University Way

    • 206 633 3030

  9. Herkimer Coffee

    A tastefully designed café in the quiet Greenwood neighborhood has a faithful following seven days a week.

    • 7320 Greenwood N

    • 206 784 0202

  10. Tea House Kuan Yin

    Offers fine teas and an ambience that’s more Zen than zippy.

    • 1911 N 45th

    • 206 632 2055

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