For some reason when people find out you're from the Pacific Northwest, the first sentence out of their mouth is always, "Oh... it's so rainy there." And yes! It does rain quite a bit, but it's not depressing as some people think it is.
If you're from Seattle, you know that all that rain means beautiful and luscious evergreen forests. Oh, and not to mention the beautiful view of mountains and Puget Sound. It can't be that bad if Jeff Bezos and Bill Gates have set up shop there.
Even if you've called Seattle home for many years, there are always hidden gems waiting to be discovered. You can take shelter from the rain at a Insta-worthy cafe, roam the aisles of a massive bookstore, take a romanic stroll in a Japanese garden, or head to a circus burlesque restaurant. Yup, that last one definitely exists!
So what are you waiting for?! Grab your friend, your SO or your sibling and catch up while enjoying all that Seattle has to offer.
Golden Gardens Park
Where: 8498 Seaview Pl NW
There is only one spot that's perfect for watching the sunset. If you're looking to step up your romance game, this is it. Pack a picnic (or order pizza), buy a bottle of wine, bring two glasses, and a bunch of blankets to complete the experience. Snuggle up to your partner as you clink your glasses with the soundtrack of the waves playing in the background. If that doesn't win you brownie points, nothing will.
Where: 801 Alaskan Way
Pretend you're in a shampoo commercial while getting the best view of the city. The Seattle-Bainsbridge ferry is only a 35 minute ride, but it's worth it even if you're not a tourist. Sometimes, it's nice to be reminded why you love the city that you live in. Just make sure to bundle up while you take the trip across the open waters of Puget Sound! But also make sure your outfit is cute because um, hello! You never want to pass up a photo opportunity. But also remember not to wear lip gloss because that's a hair disaster just waiting to happen.
The Market Theater Gum Wall
Where: 1428 Post Alley
This wall is equal parts gross and cool, so you can't pass it up. If you listen closely, you can hear the wall screaming to be your background in an Instagram photo. After you're done carefully standing close to the wall but not too close, you can be a part of history and stick your own gum on the wall. Plus, you can pretend you're the star of a rom com while you're here. If it's good enough for Jennifer Aniston in Love Happens, then it's good enough for you!
Green Lake Park
Where: 7201 East Green Lake Dr N
There's a reason why it's one of the most beloved parks in Seattle. It's a natural preserve for all kinds of trees, plants, birds, and waterfowl. So keep your eyes off your phone while you're here so you don't miss anything! You can on the path that takes you around the lake while you rant to your friend about work or talk about more pleasant things like what you've been watching on Netflix.
Where: 2251 3rd Ave
Let your furry friend run wild in this park. And if your dog is finished making new friends, head on over to the real highlight of the park: the dog mural! If you haven't already gotten on the bandwagon of starting an Instagram for your dog, this is the perfect photo to kick things off. That is, of course, if you can get your dog to sit still for at least 5 seconds.
Suzzallo Graduate Reading Room
Where: 4000 15th Ave NE
You can still come here even if you didn't receive your Hogwarts letter. This library on the University of Washington campus is everything. See, libraries can be fun when you aren't the tortured and sleep-deprived student studying there. If you're brave enough, definitely do a Harry Potter-themed photoshoot here because that is the definition of #Goals.
Where: NE 45th & Brooklyn Ave
When you come here, don't be distracted by the fountain. Walk around and look at the all the beautiful buildings on the UW campus, but let's not kid ourselves here. None of that remotely comes close to the stunning view you get of Mount Rainier.
Where: 525 S Weller St
This bookstore has everything. You can get manga, Asian books and magazines, and stationery here. Make sure you explore the whole bookstore because you do not want to miss out on their fabulous gift and trinket section too. Even if you aren't really a bookstore person, the store also holds concerts throughout the year!
Tropical Butterfly House
Where: 200 2nd Ave N
There's a place in Seattle that's sunny and warm every day of the year. Visit the Tropical Butterfly House in the Pacific Science Center to see hundreds of species of butterflies. Just walk through and feel the magic of butterflies landing on you!
The Pink Door
Where: 1919 Post Alley
Are you brave enough to step through the pink door? If you can wade you way through the crowds of tourists in Pike Place Market, you will have an unforgettable time at the Pink Door restaurant. They serve delicious Italian food, but the entertainment is where it's at. You will find cabaret performances, trapeze artists, jazz bands, tarot card readers, and burlesque shows. Dinner and a show just got a whole new meaning.
Where: 700 4th Ave
The tourist trap of Columbia Tower is paying $30 for the observatory on the 73rd floor. But if you're looking for a view of the city without the hefty price, head to the Starbucks on the 40th floor. You get an amazing view for a small price of a coffee.
Where: 9817 55th Ave S
Seeking some peace and quiet? Clear your head as you walk through this garden that has waterfalls, ponds, bridges, and streams. It's hard to be stressed out when you're here. The garden is open all year round, but the best time to go is in the fall just as the leaves are changing colors.
Cunning Crow Apothecary
Where: 9024 Greenwood Ave N
Hermione Granger, who? You can become the brightest witch of your generation when you come here because they offer a variety of classes! You can learn about divination, talismans, and more. If you want to go to the store just to look around, make sure you keep your eyes peeled for their spell kits!
Elliott Bay Book Company
Where: 1521 10th Ave
The cozy vibes are strong here. Take in that beautiful smell of books as you walk through here. This the place you want to be when it's cold and rainy out. You can take your time browsing or head to the cafe for a snack when you get hungry. The best part about this bookstore is that they have plenty of seating scattered around the store. You won't have to awkwardly stand while you try and figure out if you want to read this book or not.
Where: Denny Creek Campground, Snoqualmie Pass
Less than an hour away is a magnificent waterfall. This is a pretty popular hike so get there early to snag yourself a parking spot before heading up the short hike. It's not a particularly difficult hike, but still be careful if you're going in the late fall/winter because it can get really slippery. But your cardio for the day is rewarded with this breathtaking watefall!
Chihuly Garden and Glass
Where: 305 Harrison St
Gorgeous doesn't even begin to describe this exhibit. You've already seen your Instagram feed flooded with photos of your friends here, so it's time you go! Check out the glass sculptures in the glasshouse and in the garden. As much as you think it's pretty in photos, no camera does it justice.
Volunteer Park Conservatory
Where: 1400 E Galer St
When you want to get away from your dying plants at home, you can come here. Breathe in the fresh air as you walk through the botanical garden and the Victorian-style greenhouse. And after you've had your fill of walking through plant wonderland, take your photos because this place will work with any Instagram aesthetic.
Preserve and Gather
Where: 358 NW 85th St
No hipster would ever step foot in here, so don't worry you're safe from them. You'll never want to leave here because the cafe is so inviting. Head here when you've got some work to do or if you want a place to catch up on your reading. Their pasteries here will have you debating if you should order two or three while you're there.
Miner's Landing Carousel
Where: Pier 57
Everybody deserves to be the star of their own rom com. To add to the rom com vibes, go with your loved one and have a romantic night out. If you're not too embarrassed to ride the carousel, go and do it! Live your best life even if it's mostly children and parents on it.
Moore Coffee Shop
Where: 1930 2nd Ave
Latte art lives here. The talented baristas at Moore Coffee Shop can create the craziest designs on top of your latte that you'll actually think, "Wait, this is too pretty to drink." But once you get over that, your taste buds will be greeted by the most delicious coffee ever. Starbucks can't even compete. If you love to experiment with your lattes, make sure to try the taro flavor!
Gas Works Park
Where: 2101 N Northlake Way
This park is a mishmash of things in the best way possible. The leftover pieces of the coal gasification plant make an interesting background to the rolling hills in the park. Save your spot and plant yourself on the ground on top of the hill to get a beautiful view of downtown Seattle.
Seattle Public Central Library
Where: 1000 4th Ave
Even if you don't venture inside, the exterior is worth observing. But if you are ready to embrace your nerd status, head on in to explore! Even if you aren't there to check out a book, sit in one of the comfy chairs just to focus on the details of the building.
Where: 950 NW Carkeek Park Rd
It's not a big park, but there's still plenty to explore. As soon as you enter, you leave the city behind and enter Narnia. Trek the trail that takes you through the forest and leads you down to the water. Complete with a view of Puget Sound and the Olympic Mountains, this hidden gem is waiting for you!
Where: 117 S Washington St
This square is for nights out with your best friend when you want to catch up after a drink or two. Explore the shops that line the square or play a game of ping pong or foosball in the park before heading home. All the equipment is free! If it's cold out, grab a hot drink from a cafe and sit on one of the tables to do some people watching.
Where: 323 Occidental Ave S
You can't miss this restaurant with its brightly colored interior. If you're looking for a vibrant atmosphere to go with your food, this spot is for you. They serve tacos, quesadillas, but the food item people can't stop talking about is the peruvian chicken. And of course, you have to order a margarita to go with your meal!
Hamilton Viewpoint Park
Where: 1272 Palm Ave
Need a new spot for the perfect selfie? On a clear day, you can see the entire Seattle skyline and that's worth it for the short uphill hike. It's also a great place to see the sun rise if you can get up that early! Bribe your friends with the promise of food and coffee so they can join you.