Space Needle, Seattle

Space Needle, Seattle (must see)

Only one World's Fair was the setting for an Elvis Presley movie ("It Happened at the World's Fair") and that was the one held in Seattle in 1962. However, most Seattle residents are proudest of the fair's most tangible legacy: the internationally recognized Space Needle. Built in 1962, the 605ft (184-meter) structure was a marvel of design and engineering that cost $4.5 million. The centerpiece of the fair, the flying-saucer shape was chosen from many designs.

With a restaurant 500 ft above ground and an observation deck just above, the Space Needle offers some of the city's best views: to the east are Lake Union, the immensely larger Lake Washington and the distant Cascade Range; westward, Elliott Bay opens into Puget Sound in front of the Olympic Mountains; and southeast is the snowcapped peak of Mount Rainier, 60 miles (100km) away. The revolving restaurant, SkyCity, provides a 360-degree view. As diners enjoy tasty – if expensive – Northwest cuisine, the restaurant completes a rotation every 47 minutes with the aid of a 1.5 horsepower motor.

One floor up, the Observation Deck level has free-to-use telescopes on the outside deck, and a variety of graphic displays inside to help visitors orient themselves. Also inside is a coffee counter and bar to help warm up in cold weather.

Back on the ground, directly east of the Space Needle is the Seattle Center's Sculpture Garden, which has four distinctive artworks by different artists. Perhaps the best known of the four is Olympic Iliad, a huge red-and-orange sculpture made of gigantic industrial tubes, designed by Alexander Lieberman.

Why You Should Visit:
The new renovations have you in awe right off the elevator. Lots of glass and lots of view, and you also get to go to the lower section to stand on the revolving floor and look down (which is very cool). Other than that, the virtual reality bungee jumping experience at the base is free (yes, even if you don't have a ticket!).

Tip:
Try to get your tickets and your reservations for the café a few days in advance – especially if visiting on a weekend. Note that if you eat at the (rather expensive) restaurant, you can go to the viewing tower free of charge, but if you do it in reverse the deal is called off. Note also that you're *not* required to print out the tickets when purchasing them online – just open the email you receive after the purchase, click the link to view tickets and then present them for scanning.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 10am–8pm

This sight is featured in a self-guided walking tour of Seattle, Washington within the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" which can be downloaded from iTunes App Store or Google Play. Please download the app to your mobile phone or tablet for travel directions for visiting this sight. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Space Needle on Map

Sight Name: Space Needle
Sight Location: Seattle, USA
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Seattle, Washington

Create Your Own Walk in Seattle

Create Your Own Walk in Seattle

Creating your own self-guided walk in Seattle is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Seattle Introduction Walk

Seattle Introduction Walk

Seattle's pleasant central area has hills, refined architecture, lapping waves, and a Great Wheel next to the Aquarium along the waterfront. It also has one of the oldest, one-of-a kind, public markets in the U.S., with small stalls selling gorgeous flower arrangements and a staggering assortment of the freshest fruit, vegetables, fish, and meats. Take this walking tour to explore the...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
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Pioneer Square District Walking Tour

Pioneer Square District Walking Tour

Known as the district where Seattle was founded in the mid-19th century, Pioneer Square went through periods of boom and near-bust until a period of preservation managed to save and transform the area. Today, it is pretty much the most historic part of Seattle with some structures of note, including the Pioneer Building near Occidental Park, the Smith Tower, a Victorian-style wrought-iron pergola...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 0.8 Km or 0.5 Miles
Historical Religious Buildings Tour

Historical Religious Buildings Tour

Seattle's religious buildings play a very important role in the city's social life. Besides their religious functions, the buildings are an important part of the city's architectural and artistic heritage. This walking tour will lead you to some of the most beautiful religious buildings in Seattle.

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.5 Km or 2.2 Miles
Seattle Center Walking Tour

Seattle Center Walking Tour

Just north of Downtown you will find the ever-popular Seattle Center – a 74-acre (30-hectare) park and arts and entertainment center. Developed for the 1962 Century 21 Exposition (World's Fair), it contains many Seattle landmarks, including the Space Needle, the Pacific Science Center, the Chihuly Garden and Glass Museum, and the highly interactive Museum of Pop Culture. It is also the...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.1 Km or 0.7 Miles
Fremont Neighborhood Walking Tour

Fremont Neighborhood Walking Tour

At the height of its counterculture days, Fremont renamed itself 'The People's Republic of Fremont' and later gave itself the moniker 'Center of the Universe'. As if to prove the point, there's a signpost showing the distances from Fremont to far-flung places around the globe.

The famous neighborhood is home to some of Seattle's most beloved and controversial...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.1 Km or 1.9 Miles
Seattle Architecture Walking Tour

Seattle Architecture Walking Tour

Downtown Seattle has many features typical of American cities – towering skyscrapers abuzz with commerce, upscale shopping and dining, splendid theaters – but is also unexpectedly pleasant with hills, outdoor sculptures, and peek-a-boo views of Elliot Bay's sparkling water.

Follow this self-guided walk for a rundown of Seattle's most striking downtown buildings – starting with...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.1 Km or 1.3 Miles

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