Before coming to Seattle I sought out advice from my colleagues Amy and Ben about where to go and what to do, and we received plenty of good tips for bars, restaurants, and attractions, but there was divergence on the best platform for taking in the view. The question was whether to go up into the iconic Space Needle, or opt for the newer Columbia Tower. Each was deemed “sort of worth it” by our local contacts, with Ben calling CT the better option. In the end, we opted for the Needle.
The reasoning was simple. Our third day was devoted to more traditional touring after the previous day’s long treks, and what would be more traditional than the Needle. The decision was also informed by past experiences. I have the dubious distinction of having visited Paris three times and not once having gone to the site of the Eiffel Tower, so I opted for the known quantity. We also wanted to visit the Museum of Pop Culture and the Chihuly Garden & Glass exhibit, which are all in the same area.
We bought City Pass tickets before going up in the tower. The cost is $99 per ticket, which gets you entry into five venues or attractions. There are about eight to choose from, and if you do four things it does save you a little on the individual entry fees. Our last thing was a one-hour harbor cruise, another tourist thing, but at the end of the day it was a good way to get some air, relax, and have a beer.
The Needle is what is. Iconic but also not very useful beyond being a tourist draw. The original revolving restaurant is long gone, but it’s been replaced by a glass floor, which is either very cool, or nauseating if you have a fear of heights or get motion sick, as the image above reveals. But the 360 degree views are very good and we thought it was worth the trip.
Next up was MoPOP, which was a lot of fun. The museum was founded by the late Paul Allen and a good chunk of the collection was stuff he acquired. There were exhibits focused on local legends Pearl Jam and Nirvana, along with sections featuring science fiction and horror genres, a fashion exhibit and other things. They change frequently.
Next was the glasswork of local artist David Chihuly, which was also very cool stuff. I’ll let the photos tell that story.
The day ended with the boat tour, which as I said was a relaxing way to end the day. Later we went back down to the market for dinner at Matt’s at the Market, which came highly recommended. It was an excellent if pricey seafood place. Definitely would recommend it.