Activities in Seattle

Ballard Locks / Hiram M. Chittenden Locks

Address 3105 Northwest 54th Street, Seattle, WA 98107 Map, Tel (206) 783-7059 Call, Hours 7am-9pm year round

Children will enjoy watching boats pass through the locks and during salmon season you can watch fish swim upstream on a gradual incline using the fish ladder first built by the US Army Corps of Engineers in 1917. There is also a small, dark, museum with exhibits that help viewers understand how the locks work. For detailed information, check the Ballard Locks Website more

Benaroya Hall Garden of Rememberance

Address 200 University Street, Seattle, WA 98101-3428 Map, Location Along 2nd Ave

Don't tell the guy who cleans the leaf filter that I sent you, but the man-made stream in this memorial is the perfect place for leaf-boat races more

Boat Ride in Puget Sound

Address 1101 Alaskan Way, Seattle, WA 98101 Map, Where Pier 55, just south of the Aquarium, Cost Varies

There are several options for getting out on the water with your kids. On a nice day, this can be one of the most plesant ways to see the city, and kids love the change of pace. more

Boeing Museum of Flight

Address 9404 E Marginal Way S Seattle, WA 98108 Map, Tel (206) 764-5720? Call, Hours 10am to 5pm daily, Discounts AAA discount; First Thursday of each month is free from 5pm-9pm Website

If your kids are obsessed with airplanes, the museum of flight is a wonderful place to visit. For older kids, there are lots of old airplanes to look at (and a few to climb onboard), including the original Air Force One. There is also the chance to tour the original Boeing "factory" and a section dedicated to space travel. For younger kids there is a smallish play area with a few planes to climb-on board and some interactive exhibits that help kids learn about flying. A mock control tower overlooks Boeing field. While there isn't a ton for young kids to do, there is a lot of space, and my kids always seem to enjoy a visit, especially on a rainy day. more

Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture

Address 17th Ave Ne & N 45th St, Seattle, WA 98195-0001 Map, Tel 206-543-5590 Call, Hours 10am-5pm daily; open until 8pm on the first Thursday of every month, Cost $8 general, $6.50 seniors, $5 students and youth (5 & up w/ID); Ages 4 and under are free Website

If your child likes dinosaurs, insects, bugs and geology the Burke museum is a great place to take them. They'll also learn about local culture through the museum's collection of Native American art and artifacts. more

Bus Free Ride Area


It's no secret that toddlers love to ride the bus. It's also no secret that pushing that stroller around can get tiring. From 6a.m. to 7p.m. daily in downtown seattle (including Pioneer square) the bus is free. Many routes have kneeling busses, making it easy to board with a stroller, but you'll have to collapse your stroller after you board. more

Cal Anderson Park

Address Cal Anderson Park, Seattle, WA Map, Website

This vibrant city park has a nice playground and there's always some sort of sporting event going on. This is the perfect location to run around after exploring Capitol Hill more

Carkeek Park

Address 950 NW Carkeek Park Rd., Seattle, WA Map, Tel (206) 684-0877 Call, Website

Carkeek park must be one of the prettiest playgrounds in Seattle, and one of the most fun for kids. The park overlooks Puget Sound. Not only are there several play areas to choose from, but there's a huge salmon slide, kid-size caves, and benches overlooking the train tracks (perfect for train-spotting). more

Center for Wooden Boats (and NW Seaport Maritime Heritige Center)

Address 1010 Valley Street, Seattle, WA Map, Tel (206) 382-2628 Call, Website

If you're visiting Seattle's South Lake Union neighborhood, it's worth checking out the calendar on the Center for Wooden Boats website to find out what activities for kids are available during your visit. You might find shanty sings, opportunities to climb aboard old wooden boats, Tugboat storytime (held on a 100 year old tugboat), pond boat sailing or other activities. more

CityPass Seattle

If you'll be visiting Seattle's most popular attractions, one way to save money and skip the lines is to buy a CityPASS. CityPASS offers a savings of 43% on 6 popular Seattle attractions! (all of them are kid friendly) The CityPass includes the following attractions: more

Fremont Troll

Address Troll Ave N, Seattle, WA 98103 Map, Location Under the north end of the Aurora Bridge on N. 36th Street

This whimsical sculpture of a troll eating an original Volkswagen Beetle (tucked away under the Aurora Bridge) is a fun find for kids old enough not to be scared. Visitors are encouraged to climb on the troll, and since this spot is sheltered by the bridge, it can be a nice place to let the kids run on a rainy day. more

Japanese Garden at the Seattle Arboretum

Address 1075 Lake Washington Blvd. E, Seattle WA Map, Tel (206) 684-4725 Call, Extras Koi food: $1 at the gatehouse Website

Local children flock to the Japanese garden on sunny mornings (especially during the spring and fall when the garden is especially beautiful). Why? They enjoy the garden paths, waterfall, koi and turtles in this 3 1/2 acre park. Even better, they can pick up fish food at the entrance gate and feed the Koi from a platform built over the water. The Japanese garden is mostly stroller friendly. more

Madison Park Beach

Address E Madison St. and E Howe St, Seattle Map, Website

A pleasant beach with both grassy and sandy areas as well as limited shade. There's a swimming raft for good swimmers. A lifeguard is on duty during summer months. more

Madison Park Playground

Address 4200 Madison Ave (42nd Ave E), Seattle, WA Map,

Madison Park is among my favorite playgrounds in Seattle, and it's the only one of my favorites with a variety of good restaurants in walking distance. The playground has three play areas - one for younger kids, a more challenging area for older kids, and a third are with a zipline. Pathways around the play area make a nice place for young kids to practice riding bikes, and the beach is just a short walk away. more

Monorail (Downtown to Seattle Center)

Address 400 Pine St,Seattle, WA 98101 Map, Tel 206-905-2620 Call, Hours daily 9am-11pm (departures every 10 min), Cost 4 and under is free. Youth 75 cents. Adults $2 each way Website

The Seattle Monorail connects downtown with Seattle Center (see below). Toddlers and young children love the ride itself, and for grownups it is easier than moving the car and usually cheaper than paying for parking twice. Strollers are allowed on the trains, making it a really easy way to get around. Bring your kids right up to the front of the train where they can watch through big picture windows and sit near the conductor. more

Olympic Sculpture Park

Address 2901 Western Avenue, Seattle, WA 98121 Map, Hours May 1–Sept 30: 6 a.m.–9 p.m. daily; Oct 1–Apr 30: 7 a.m.–6 p.m. daily, Cost Free Website

Pick up a picnic at Pikes Market and head down to the Olympic Sculpture Park (a little less than one mile north of the market) The park, which opened in 2007 has plenty of space to run, wonderful views, and great outdoor sculpture. more

Pacific Science Center

Address 200 Second Ave. N., Seattle, WA 98109 Map, Tel 206.443.2001 Call, Hours Mon-Fri 10am-5pm; Sat-Sun 10am-6pm, Cost Adults $11; Ages 6-12 $8.00; Ages 3-5 $6; Under 3 Free Website

The Pacific Science center has lots of fun hands on exhibits, as well as interesting seasonal exhibits for kids. Our family's favorite exhibit is the year-round tropical butterfly house, and while much of the museum is best for older kids, the butterfly house is a delight from about 9 months and up. There's also a planetarium, laser show, and an IMAX theatre. more

Pike Place Market

Address 1501 Pike Pl # 510, Seattle, WA Map, Hours Vary, most vendors open by 8am Website

Pike Place is a destination on any tourist map. Luckily, kids love it too. When it's sunny, I bring my toddler almost every week. It's fun to choose fruit from the colorful displays, there are a few bakeries and restaurants to pick up a snack or lunch and lots of music and activity. On summer weekends there is almost always something special going on. Best of all, it's open early, giving you an activity when the kids wake up at the crack of dawn (and a way to beat the crowds). more

Rain Wall at Westlake Park

Address 401 Pine Street, Seattle Map,

The "rain wall" in Westlake Park is a pathway between two pouring waterfalls - and a fun place to cool off on a sunny day. During summertime, small street festivals and musical performances often take place in this park. During the Holiday Shopping season there is a carousel and the opportunity for a horsedrawn carriage ride. more

Seattle Aquarium

Address 1483 Alaskan Way # 59, Seattle, WA 98101 Map, Tel (206) 386-4320 Call, Hours 9:30am-5pm daily; last entry at 5pm; exhibits close at 6pm; open 365 days, with special hours for some holidays Website

While this isn't my favorite Aquarium, it is a nice way to pass a rainy day and to get familiar with the animals that live in Pacific Northwest waters (and beyond). An updated entry includes a huge "Windows on Washington" salt water tank and sea otters at play. There is also a Salmon ladder, which is interesting to watch when the Salmon are running. more

Seattle Art Museum

Address 1300 First Avenue, Seattle, WA 98101-2003 Map, Tel 206.654.3100 Call, Hours Tu-Su: 10am–5pm; Th & Fri 10am–9pm; closed Mon, Cost Some areas free. Children 12 & under free. Adults $13

The newly reopened Seattle Art Museum has some free areas that are great for kids! The "art ladder" (the grand staircase to the right of the main entrance) has a craft area for kid and art installations specifically designed to be visually engaging and interesting for all ages. more

Seattle Center

Address 305 Harrison Street, Seattle WA Map, Cost Free Website

Hop on the monorail and head over to Seattle Center. Seattle center is the home to the space needle (kids will love the LONG elevator ride), a variety of kid friendly museums, and daily cultural activities and festivals. more

Seattle Central Library

Address 1000 4th Ave, Seattle, WA Map, Tel 206-386-4636 Call, Hours M-Th 10am-8pm, Fri & Sat 10am-6pm, Sun 12n-6pm, Call for seasonal closures, Cost Free Website

If you're interested in modern architecture or green design (and even if you are not) the Seattle Central Library is one of the coolest new buildings on the west coast. It is not only visually stunning, but the designers gave a great deal of thought to how a library and a public building should function... redesigning the building from the ground up. Adults will be interested in signing up for a tour or just exploring the building with kids (check out the red meeting area on the fourth floor, the wacky art installations in the escalator and the beautiful wooden floor on the first floor) My son never tires of exploring the library. more

Seattle Children's Museum

Address 305 Harrison Street, Seattle Map, Hours Mon-Fri 10am-5pm; Sat 10am-6pm; Sun 10am-6pm, Cost $7.50 adults and children 1 and up Website

The Seattle children's museum is a good place for kids to play freely on a rainy day. There are lots of different hands on activities, including a large enclosed area for babies and toddlers, a stage with costumes, a "global village" with homes and shops from different countries, a craft area, and more. more

Seattle Glassblowing Studio

Address 2227 5th Ave, Seattle, WA 98121 Map, Tel (206) 448-2181 Call, Website

This glassblowing studio and shop will be tough for some kids to visit and a wonderland for others. Brightly colored glass objects, blown by local artists are displayed without the benefit of protective glass cases, making them easy for kids to see well (but also easy for them to touch). Kids and adults can watch professional glassblowers and students work in the hotshop at the back of the studio. A small cafe next door serves pastries and crepes, making this a nice place to stop for a snack and a "taste" of the local glass-art scene. more

Seattle Great Wheel

Address 1301 Alaskan Way, Seattle, WA 98101-2013 Map, Tel 206-623-8607 Call, Website

The Great Wheel's cabins are all fully enclosed, making it a good option even with young kids. Ride times vary, but you can expect to ride for 10-20 minutes (3 full revolutions). Plan to leave your stroller and any food or drinks on the ground - they're not allowed onboard. more

Soundbridge Seattle Symphony Music Discovery Center

Address Seattle Symphony, 200 University Street • Seattle, WA 98101 Map, Entrance On 2nd near union Website

Soundbridge is a small children's music museum affiliated with the Seattle Symphony. You can drop in and play with the musical instruments on display whenever they are open, but the best time to come is when they are running "Musical Storytelling" or "Everyone Come Drum" classes. more

Space Needle

Address 219 Fourth Ave N Seattle, WA 98109 Map, Tel 206.905.2100 Call, Tickets Skip the line by ordering tickets online, Notes After dinner, on a slow night, you may be able to enjoy dessert only at the Space Needle Restaurant Website

Space Needle elevators travel at 10 mph, 14 feet per second, 800 feet per minute, or as fast as a parachutist or a raindrop falls to earth. Toddlers and older kids will enjoy the elevator ride and the view down on the city. For a special treat, have a bite to eat (or just dessert) at the revolving restaurant (reservations strongly recommended) The food is just ok, but the view is fantastic and kids will love watching the city go by more

Theo Chocolate Factory Tour

Address 3400 Phinney Ave. N, Seattle Map, Tel 206-632-5100 Call, Hours Daily 10am-6pm, Reservations Recommended Website

What child wouldn't love a tour of a chocolate factory? What adult wouldn't love to taste some of the best chocolate in Seattle? Theo's is the only roaster of organic cacao beans in the United States, and unlike most chocolate makers, handles every step in the chocolate making process, from roasting the beans to forming and wrapping candy bars. more

Underground Tour

Address 608 First Avenue, Seattle, WA 98104 Map, Tel 206.682.4646 Call, Notes There are no reservations, so arrive in advance to buy your tickets Website

Older kids will enjoy roaming the subterranean passages that once were the main roadways and first-floor storefronts of old downtown Seattle. Tour guides keep this tour fun with jokes and humorous stories about this historic area. more

Volunteer Park Conservatory

Address 1402 East Galer Street, Seattle, WA 98112 Map, Tel (206) 322-4112 Call, Website

A floral conservatory might seem like an odd or boring place to bring children, but this small conservatory, filled with unusual plant life is is endlessly fascinating. Wander through and look for bugs swimming in the pitcher plants, fantastically colored orchids, and a huge variety of cacti. This local gem always seems to be struggling to stay afloat, so please make a donation on your way in, or stop by the carefully curated gift shop. more

Volunteer Park wading pool

Address volunteer park, seattle, wa Map, Open Summer only

On warm summer days, it seems like the entire neighborhood is gathered around this wading pool. The water is shallow, so tots can wade in on their own, and the staff checks the water regularly to make sure that it is clean. more

World Spice

Address 1509 Western Ave, Seattle WA Map, Tel (206) 682-7274 Call, Cost Free

After visiting Pike's Market, swing into World Spice. If you enjoy cooking, you will love the wide variety of high quality spices and tea. Because you buy in bulk, prices are often cheaper than the grocery store. Let your kids explore, smelling each spice, and try buying a few favorites and seasoning your picky toddler's food with them. more

Reader Favorites

Agua Verde!


The servers are super friendly to the little ones. They don't have a "kids menu" but the half oder quesadilla is perfect. more

Alki beach

Address Alki Avenue S.W. Seattle, WA 98116 Map,

Volleyball tournaments, sandy beach areas for the kids to play along the shoreline.
Watch kyakers, ferry boats, big ships coming in and out of port.
There is a great promenade for walking, picnicking and even bbq grills.
Many great restaurants and businesses along the way.
If the wind is right grab your kite!
Even in the winter months Alki beach is amazing! more

Bainbridge Island Ferry Ride

Such a fun and beautiful experience. Classic activity for a family visiting Seattle. Great photo ops! more

Diving Santa at Seattle Aquarium

Address 1483 Alaskan Way, Seattle, WA Map, Website

Kids will love it because of Santa! He's there feeding fish in his traditional red suit. Also, in between, there's music provided by local youth jazz ensembles and string quartets. more


Address 321 north hazel street brookings oregon usa 97415 Map, Tel 15416617065 Call,

your kids will love it the can make music and they can also make memories more

Experience Music Project

Address 325 5th Ave N Seattle, WA Map, Tel 1-877-367-7361 Call, Website

This place is So cool for kids. They get to be hands on with the exhibits and make music in their own style. The noise, the colors and the many things going on cater well to children of all ages. more

Ferry Ride to Bainbridge Island

Great photo op. Kids museum and waterfront park in walking distance of terminal. more


Address 7201 E Green Lake Dr. N Seattle, WA 98103 Map, Tel (206) 684-4075 Call, Website

The lake itself has a 3 mile paved path around that is always a hit for a stroller or bike/wagon walk. There is a fabulous playground on site for kids of all ages. In the summer there is a boat house open that rents pontoon boats and other small water craft to rent by the half hour out on the lake. If you are brave (it's cold) you can even swim in the summer. There are also many coffee shops and restaurants around the lake that are kid friendly. more

Highland Ice Arena

Address 18005 Aurora Ave N, Shoreline, WA 98133 Map, Tel (206) 546-2431 Call, Website

This ice arena, which has open skate hours, is a great place to beat the heat during summer time. Our favorite time to visit, though, is on Christmas Day when it's one of the few activities in town that's open. more

KidsQuest Museum

Address 4091 Factoria Mall SE Bellevue, WA 98006 Map, Tel 425-637-8100 Call, Website

This place is a hidden gem! It's tucked away in a quiet little corner of Factoria Mall (hello, super easy/free parking!). There are a variety of play spaces for different ages. My favorite is the water station where kids can just play with water (they provide some water-resistant aprons). more

Light Rail Line

Address 4th Ave & Pine St, Seattle Map, Tel (888) 889-6368 Call, Website

It is a fun inexpensive way to see the area and what kid doesn't like a train? Start at the Southern most part of the line, on a clear day you can see Mount Rainier. Stay on the train and take it to Downtown Seattle and walk to Pike Place Market or other fun stops in Downtown (waterfront, aquarium, shopping, etc). It is also stroller friendly-- roll right on and right of. more

Lil Diggers Playtime at Sandbox Sports Seattle

Address 5955 Airport Way S Map, Tel (206) 624-2899 Call, Website

They have a giant indoor sandbox! It's a fun place to take the kids to let them run around and entertain themselves. more

New Born You Massage

Address No on-site location, client's homes or hotels only Map, Tel 206-661-4071 Call, Website

We provide in-home massage with child care and often travel to hotels as well. The child care providers are CPR-trained and bring educational toys for the little ones to play while the therapist provides moms with a moment of relaxation. more

Old School Frozen Custard

Address 1316 E. Pike St., Seattle WA Map, Tel (206) 324 2586 Call, Website

This smooth and creamy ice cream is served from a softserve machine, but it's much richer than any softserve you have eaten before. Vanilla and Chocolate are always available, and the store has a special flavor each day. more

Rainier Lodging

Address Ashford, WA 98304 Map, Tel 877-782-3277 Call, Website

Rainier Lodging offers a number of high-quality, family-friendly cabins at Mt. Rainier National Park. Children are always welcome and we try to provide family necessities such as cribs, highchairs, booster chairs, toys, kids videos/DVDs, plastic dinnerware, emergency supplies kit, and more. more

Residence Inn Seattle East/Redmond

Address 7575 164th Ave. N.E., Redmond, Washington 98052 Map, Tel 425-497-9226 Call, Website

Inspiration comes naturally for business and leisure travelers alike at Residence Inn Seattle East/Redmond. Located in Redmond Town Center, our downtown hotel is within walking distance of over 40 restaurants and shops and is close to top Seattle companies like Terex and Nintendo™. Business travelers will enjoy our hotel's easy access to Microsoft’s Bellevue campus, located three miles away, while tourists will love the proximity to Marymoor Park, the Space Needle and Pike Place market. After a busy day of meetings or sightseeing, relax in spacious suites featuring free Wi-Fi and fully equipped kitchens – ideal for longer stays. Additional amenities include ergonomic workspaces, luxurious bedding and grocery delivery service. Our hotel also boasts a 24-hour market, outdoor swimming pool, and complimentary daily breakfast. Enjoy comfort that feels like home at Residence Inn Seattle East/Redmond! more

Rosalie Whyel Museum of Doll Art

Address 1116 108th Avenue NE Bellevue WA 98004 Map, Tel 425-455-1116 Call, Website

The Rosalie Whyel Museum of Doll Art has over 1200 dolls on exhibit from antique to modern. The modern gallery has American Girl Samantha, the original Barbie, and even G.I. Joe! The main gallery has dolls from 1690 to 1920 from all over the world. Don't forget to visit their store where you can buy antique and new dolls, books, and even custom made clothes for your dolls! There are new exhibits every few months so it is worth coming more than once. There are even tea parties for girl's birthdays! more

See Wild Orca Whales - One of Washington's Icons

Address 2 spring street landing, friday harbor Wa 98250360.378.1323 Map, Tel 360.378.1323 Call, Website

This tour encompasses the entire eco system of the Puget Sound area. The Southern Resident Killer Whales are the focus, but all marine mammals, birds and plants are searched out and discussed along with what all of us can do in our daily life to keep the home of Orca Whales, the ocean, habitable. more

Skijoring and Sledding

Address Crystal Springs sno park, Exit 62 off I-90, east of Seattle Map, Website

We take the pulk, our girl, the dogs, the cross-country skis, and lots of hot cocoa up to Crystal Springs. Our girl loves to ride in the pulk and roll in the snow if she wants. The dogs, in harness, love to pull mom and dad. Mom, Dad, and the dogs get lots of exercise. The dogs' excitement makes our girl laugh. Sometimes, we also do a bit of sledding, if we aren't too tired. And all for the price of a snowpark pass and some gas. What a deal!!! more

Tutta Bella in Columbia City

Address 4918 Rainier Avenue South Seattle, WA 98118 Map, Tel 206.721.3501 Call, Website

Pizza! Gelato! Special little treat for the kids to entertain themselves. There are almost always kids in this restaurant and the staff is always friendly and accomodating. more