Ok, sorry this list is so outdated. Some of these places might not exist nor be relevant anymore. Anyway, I’m going to start hosting live performances I’ve recorded in Seattle here. Enjoy, and thanks for visiting!
Alki Beach A Beach where Californian refugees can feel at home. Instead of being laden with rocks, baby crabs, and barnacles to make your feet bleed, it has sand. Beach parties in the Summer.
All Together Skatepark Seattle’s only indoor Skatepark. Mostly for street skating, but there’s always a mini-ramp jam as well.
Bainbridge FerryGreat, quick, and very scenic, getaway from Downtown Seattle, to the gates of the Olympic Peninsula, with a cute little shopping strip within walking distance of the ferry terminal on the other side. Park your car and take a ride. You might see an Orca Whale.
Ballard Bowl / Ballard CommonsWhere skateboarding is a spectator sport, complete with benches and safety rails. Beautiful park. Water feature for kids, library right across the street, and candy shop right next to the bowl. Seattle Skaters and Pearl Jam fought hard to keep the old bowl, and this was the city’s compromise. Thank God Seattle skaters responded with Marginal Way
Ballard pizza co Best pizza in Seattle. Thin crust, akin to New York style, but not sloppy like New York; it has crispy crust, like a Pizza Hut Deep Dish.
Beths Café 24 Hour Breakfast for Dinner right across Aurora from Greenlake. Coloring crayons and paper for everyone. Tape your creations to the wall. Amazing Shakes, 12 Egg Omlettes, and killer jukebox. If you’re indecisive, just get the Bacon and Eggs. Crisped just right. Includes toast and bottomless Hash Browns. Beware: don’t try to out-hipster the waiters, you’ll go home crying.
Bimbos Cantina Dine like a hipster with free chips, like a hipster in the heart of Capitol Hill
Bluewater Bistro Dine fancy with reasonable prices, with a view of Greenlake, or Lake Washington, while the beautiful people jog in front of you outside.
Broadway The Broadway scene has changed quite a bit over the last decade. Being overrun like a little Bellevue, but there are hold outs. Seattle Central is still a great Community College, where your credits will transfer to a 4 year University, and Cal Anderson Park is still a great place to chill. Especially the lit tennis courts, where basketball players, bike jousters, dodge ballers, and skaters peacefully coexist.
Cafe Vita My favorite cafe to chill and write at. They’re open late in a sea of frat boy drunk fest crossed with crust punk beggars who aren’t really begging. They’re just chilling and skating. If you want to find beggars in front of a cafe, go to the U District where the AVE Rats live. Cafe Vita has poignant lighting. It’s dark in the right places, and people aren’t too loud. They just wanna drink coffee like me and work on their shit. A block away is everything you need in nightlife. The crossroads of nightlife in Seattle for a very long time. Don’t fuck around. We need more punk rock bars up here though. Cafe Vita is where I come because I miss Kincora and King Cobra.
Carkeek park One of Seattle’s finest beachfront parks with yet another panoramic view of the Olympics. Awesome playground for little kids, including a giant, concrete Salmon slide. Lot’s of hiking trails and great beach combing. Best to go at low tide. The foot bridge from the playground side to the beach side is really cool when trains go underneath it. Cheap thrills are the best around.
Central TavernHistorical and Legendary Grunge Bar
Columbia tower Skyview Observatory Cheaper than the Space Needle with a waaaaayyyy better view
Crack sabbath Sax, Drums, Bass, and Organ speed jazz. All local legends in their own right featuring Skerik who helped out Mad Season back in the day, Ron Weinstein of the Suffering Fuckheads (catch them too or you’re really stupid), Mike Stone, who doesn’t stop drumming, ever (I think he’s a robot), and Keith Lowe … punching you with bass so low and hard, only your subconscious knows what to do with it. Feels good. Catch them any chance you get. I do. There are some shows on the Music page.
Crocodile CafeLegendary Grunge Bar, notorious for being a best Seattle Live Venue
Crown hill skatepark This little skate dot, right up the street from Dick’s on Holman, is a great place to avoid the crowds, especially for beginners. Nice little 4ft x 20ft wide(ish) concrete halfpipe, with some street elements surrounding it. All Grindline butter. Also, for parents riding with their kids in tow, or with little kids beginning, there’s a little playground right next to it. Score.
Dahl skatepark So many parks so little time. I’ve only made it to Dahl park a few times, but that’s my mistake. It’s a sick skate spot, that hardly ever gets used (at least from what I’ve seen). Undulating concrete and floating quarter pipes, from what I recall. Just up the way from UVillage.
Darrell’s Tavern The first time I checked out Darrell’s was for a Brett Netson show. Then he came back and did it again like 3 months later. I really really wish I had a copy of that. He blew the doors off the place, like, louder than Mudhoney at the Sunset Tavern, his guitar alone. Epic. I’ve been back several times for Crack Sabbath and other stuff. They get some random shows in there. Always good though. I believe they do standup comedy too. “A little 50s Tavern in a midst of strip mall misery… a hold out.” -Brett Netson
Delridge Skatepark Arguably the sickest park in Seattle. Grindline design and build, which is rare, since from what I understand, design and build bids are separate, so you get a lot of parks where Grindline only did one or the other. Anytime they have their hands in it is a good thing, but Delridge is a miracle.
Dicks Seattle is the only place in America, where you can tell someone to eat a bag of dicks, and it’s a good thing. Dick’s drive-in will satisfy your hunger need everytime. Too buzzin’ and hungry to drive? A Dick’s Deluxe will fix you. Guaranteed. They use 100% beef, without the pink slime and franken-bits. Their shakes and fries are also super grubbin’ and satisfying as well. At all but the one in Lower Queen Anne one, you have to eat outside though, . It’s more than a burger joint. It’s a party. Dick’s is the place where the cool hang out. The Swass like to play and the rich flaunt clout. -Sir Mix A-Lot
Discovery park My favorite park sits on the bluffs of Magnolia, beach, forest, sand cliffs, light house, old military dwellings, giant snowball looking radar structure, and lots of other grand surprises awaiting in the tall grass meadows. The view from the bluffs is of the Olympic Mountains. Your dog will love you, but keep him on a leash. The cute, wild rabbits might attack. The beach is full of shell, driftwood, barnacle, sand dollar, tide pool, and baby crab treasures. Don’t take them home though, because you’ll get busted by the Park Ranger. If you live in Seattle, truly enjoy the outdoors like your profile says, and you haven’t been to Magnolia park, grab your friends for a hike, or running partner for a jog, and go right now!
Easy Street Records Love this record store in the West Seattle junction. Complete with CDs, Tapes, DVDs, lots of good Vinyl, and a nice Cafe.
El corazon Small venue with great shows (punk, funk, metal mostly). Used to be the Offramp, if you remember that, that’s where it is. Right near the Denny exit, and at the base of Capitol Hill on Denny Way. There are 2 stages, some shows are for all ages. The new Funhouse is also next door, but I have yet to check that out.
Everyday music Great record store with huge selection of new and used vinyl on Capital Hill. Also tons of cheap, used DVDs, CDs, and VHS tapes. 10th between Pike and Pine.
Experience Music Project One of Seattle’s main attractions. Giant shiny multi-colored ball of ABC gum, that sits under the Space Needle (I think it was supposed to look like Jimi Hendrix’ smashed guitar). Anyway, even if there’s not an exhibit there, it’s cool. Especially the horror movie floor. Also the Sky Church is a pretty cool room to watch shows in.
Fallout Records (RIP) Old skate, records, comic, tshirt shop from the 80s. It was classic. Skateboarding thrived in the Northwest, big thanks to this place. They also had a video show, Bombshelter Videos, on late night public access. And you got to see all the videos that didn’t make it to MTV (the best ones).
Full tilt icecream Beer, Pinball and Ice Cream. What else could you ask for? There are several locations. I’ve only been to the Ballard and White Center ones. Both are a total go. There are Vegan Ice Cream options, and Skydottr vegan/gluten free cookies available
Golden age collectibles A very good comic store that has been around for a long time. It’s in Pike Place Market, and I bee line it to Golden Age every time I wander through the Market. The have a lot of collectible stuff from movies, cartoons, comics, tv shows, etc.. Even a good stock of official movie scripts.
Golden gardens Another sandy beach for our Californian Refugees. It’s totally cool to have a fire on the beach here. This beach is a great place to watch the sunset over the Olympic Mountains. It’s just down the street from Ballard. There are a couple fancy seafood restaurants nearby. There are trails and a dog park just up the hill. The stair climb up the hill (roughly 300 or so stairs) is great for exercise. People like to paddle board here a lot as well.
Gorditos Burritos the size of a baby, and the best nachos I’ve ever had. Ever. I’m sponsored by them too, actually. My friend oneshot once filmed a sponsor me video for me at Greenlake, and threw a Gorditos pic in the video. So yeah, that means I’m sponsored. The head honcho is Shannon, who also happens to be a Seattle skater legend from the OG Ballard Bowl days. He’s a big kid, rumor is the restaurant was named after him, and shreds… barefoot.
Green leaf Very good pho with a lot of other Vietmamese food options, so you can ake your friends here when they say they don’t like Pho.
Greenlake Skatepark Sick park in the middle of the ball fields at Greenlake. Designed by Wally Holiday, who does a lot of Southern California parks, like Fontanan
Grindline Skateparks Best SkatePark builder in the world, building parks all over the world. My favorite travel destination now: any Grindline park I haven’t been to. Flew to Copenhagen and Houston this year just to skate some of their new parks. Of course, did some touristy stuff, but that was secondary. Find the park, see the sites.
Ivars on the pier Seattle’s only seafood bar. Acres of Clams. Ivar is a local legend, and the most fun place to get Ivar’s Fish n Chips grub is on the Pier, just a stones throw from the Bainbridge Island ferry. It used to be fun to feed the seagulls there, but now it’s discouraged. Seagulls now expect and will attack you for fries. I guess it’s now becoming a local haunt. Alfred Hitchcock’s “The Birds” now showing live at Ivar’s on the Pier
Jazz alley I’ve only seen one show here. Sergio Mendez and the Brasil ’66. Took Mom and Dad too. We had a nice dinner there as well, while watching the show. Yes, it’s a dinner and dining kind of place, like you’d find in Reno or Vegas. They have incredible jazz acts come through on a regular basis. But the local jazz acts don’t usually play there. It can get kind of spendy, not just for tickets, but drinks and dinner too. It’s worth it depending on how much you like the band, and your date.
Jefferson Skateparkyou either love or hate this park, but you can’t deny the best skatepark view in the city, and monster playground nearby. red skateable sculpture that’s impossible to skate, unless you have mad mad skills.
Jive Time RecordsRecord store in fremot that has a great selection of cds too. With records on the rise, used CDs are cheap, as well as there are many not printed on vinyl. These guys also have free record days. Crazy cool.
Judkins SkateparkSkatepark with a good mix of snake run, flow bowl and street section. Most liked feature is probably the mega fly-out from the bowl to a giant twinkie that flows into the street section. Modeled after Washington state landmarks. Mount Ranier is a mountain shaped bank to wall, opposite a Pool Coping quarter pipe. skatecreteordie
King County MetroYou can easily get to most skateparks by bus. Get the One Bus Away app.
Lincoln parkLong sandy beach front, with a salt water swimming pool at the end of the foot path. Also lots of woods, a playground, running trails, view points with benches and a baseball field. One of Seattle’s best parks.
Lock and keelbest place in the city for pool, beer, and smoked food, imho
Lost lake cafe24 hour diner in the heart of seattle, across from everyday music and everything else
Mamas Mexican Kitchensuper good mexican grub with a plethora of kitsch
Marginal Way Skateparkthe raddest diy skatepark in the world, imho. has a gas generator for lights, and tons of bros and ladies who ain’t gonna vibe you for not dropping in
Mctuffseamonster act that ladies of the night love to dance to
Mt Rainieri’ve been so enamoured with mt rainier since i was a child. although, the closest i’ve gotten to it was one sunny day skiing crystal mountain. i need to go there. i’m also guilty of living in montana for 5 years and never visiting glacier national park. i think i’m dumb.
Neumosgreat show venue. right up there with showbox market (fuck showbox sodo. watch out for that mistake)
Phuket best phad thai in seattle, imho. has this smoky bbq flavor to it i’ve tasted nowhere else
Pike Place Market Great place to buy fresh Seafood and Produce any time of the year. There are also local Farmer’s Markets in the different Seattle neighborhoods, like West Seattle and Ballard.
Puget Sound rulz the world through the straits of juan de fuca, up to roche harbor and beyond
Rapid Ride Transit Contrary to popular opinion, our transit rules, whatever.
Rickshaw holy shit karaoke shit faced and bright as fuck. bloody mary == vodka + one ketchup packet
River City Skatepark fuck yeah the stargate. who’s got all 4 doors in one line i wonder?
Ron Weinstein trio sunday nights at vito’s. epic shit with ron weinstein, always.
Seamonster Lounge free jazz and blues shows. all ages breakfast and action on the weekends. this lounge is the coolest place in seattle right now. i don’t drink, but when i don’t drink and wanna go out, i go here, unless one of the bands that usually play here are playing somewhere else, like the nectar or owl n thistle or something.
Seattle Aquarium after travelling the world, i think we’re pretty on par with some of the best aquariums i’ve seen. the petting tank could use some baby sharks and sting rays like the long beach CA one, but we got it pretty good with the underwater observatory. i could sit in that dome for hours, “and never tire.”
Seattle center skatepark depending on who you talk to, this place is different. it started as a wood park, then a concrete park, and now an orange, above ground concrete park. all renditions are sick as fuck. just be careful at this latest one. the glass punk wall gets very very very slippery in all weather conditions.
Seattle central community college probably the best school that’s not a 4 year accredited college yet. i’ve mistakenly said “Seattle Central University” many times. this college has some of the best professors in the state. Seattle University kids even take classes here, and transfer their shit over, while attending Seattle U. and the same probably goes for the UW. i did my first year here, and all my credits (english, math, chemistry) transferred to Carroll College in Helena, MT.
Seattle Great Wheel Yes, I was scared at first when I saw a giant ferris wheel that protruded over the Puget Sound. I went on it once, and will probably go on it again. Such a beautiful view of both the cityscape and Olympic Mountains, that you won’t be able to get from anywhere else after the Alaskan Way Viaduct is demolished. I think the wheel would be less scary without the large, red panic button in every car. Perhaps they should make it more low key, and point it out in a pamphlet.
Seattle Monorail the best ride between Seattle Center and Westlake Center. A direct route that’s quick, scenic, and to the point. Unfortunately, it’s the only piece of non-automobile traffic in Seattle that doesn’t take an Orca Card. Probably because it’s a novelty, and private, like the giant wheel. Just a guess. Watch out though, sometimes it gets stuck, and people have to be rescued with fire department ladders and cherry pickers.
Showbox market besides the Paramount and Benaroya Hall, this is probably my favorite venue in Seattle. Not to be confused with Showbox Sodo, which is my least favorite, but sometimes you go anyway because the Showbox in general gets all the great acts.
Silver platters Solid record and movie store. Loads of titles, but not the best bargains in town. Pretty much expect fair prices and rare selections. Pretty much like Tower Records used to be.
Skerik an incredible sax player, keyboardist, and not sure what else. Everyone knows he played on the Mad Season record, but that’s not his main claim to fame. His main claim to fame is whatever he’s doing, when you’re lucky enough to witness him perform.
Sonic Boom Records in Ballard has the best Used Indy section in the city. Where other record stores merely lump use indy with “Rock,” Sonic Boom goes the extra mile, where you can find all the UK Pop, Goth, and Punk in their own little slice of Used record heaven. Besides the other usual things you love about Record Stores (e.g. all the latest re-issues), mhey also have a great selection of CDs (the new vinyl) and music DVDs.
Space needle the Space Needle is expensive and I’ve never eaten in the famous revolving restaurant; although, I’ve always wanted to. Running around the observation deck makes you dizzy with delight, especially on a sunny day. If you have time to wait, definitely go on a sunny day so that you can see all the mountains. Also bring some coins for the coin-operated binoculars. Next go to the Columbia Tower on 5th and Cherry, for a higher view from a different perspective. It’s a little less expensive, and there is food and drink to imbibe as well.
Starbucks is the McDonalds of coffee for a reason. It’s really good. The beans I mean. Starbucks is to its beans as McDonalds is to it’s fries. Yes, you will probably find a better mixed drink, like a Breve (half and half Latte) at smaller coffee shops, but if all you drink is drip coffee…. The first one is in Pike Place Market’s Post Alley. The unofficial one is kitty corner from Pike Place’s Newstand.
Sub Pop Sub Pop needs it’s own page, or you can just go to their site (follow the link). I was introduce to Sub Pop (or at least took notice of the label) when Nirvana Bleach came out in the summer of ’89. That’s when I started buying records for just being on a certain, independent label. Especially if that label was Dischord or Revelation. You see Mother Love Bone wasn’t my thing. I was more the Brotherhood and Undertow and Accused fan back then. I have a whole catalog of Sub Pop to explore still. And God do I love Tad.
Suffering fuckheads are the best thing to happen to Seattle since the Sonics, probably. If you get a chance to catch this power duo in the act, you are a very fortunate soul. They play frequently and regularly, but are so under-appreciated you’d hardly notice they where there. Unless you’re in the same room, then you’ll never forget because they’re loud as fuck, and hard as hell. A punk rock / super technical drummer mashed together with Seattle’s top Hammond B3 ruler… playing classic jazz and original cuts… very hard. If you have a horn, and you’re in the audience, don’t be shy, as they may just invite you up, for a taste of your black soul.
Taco del mar with the likes of Starbucks and Than Brothers, Seattle chain restaurants are simply the greatest. Taco Del Mar is another healthy option versus the everyday Fast Food. It’s fast too. The Burrito bar will get you a wrapped Baja style burrito in a Saint’s whisper. Get the combo. The chips and queso dip; although not super healthy, is a nice reward for your not eating a Big Mac and coke like you always do.
Than brothers This place gets mixed reviews, but I ignore the bad ones because this is my favorite Pho chain, not to mention the only one I know. When I go here I get fried tofu pho every time. Not because I’m a vegetarian, but because their fried tofu is mega addictive.
The Stranger News rag conjoined twin of the Seattle Weekly that makes up for the missed music calendar and venue postings of the long long missed Rocket magazine.
Vera Project The coolest answer to the Teen Dance Ordinance of the 90s. An all ages rock and art venue to keep the kids interested in the arts, and to rise above the streets lined with bars and drinking and driving.
Vitos Great place for an Italian dinner and smooth jazz on Sunday nights.
World Extreme Pencil Fighting League The closest thing Seattle has now to the Jim Rose Circus Sideshow of the early 90’s. Racy comedic genius and healthy competition in a game that can be shared by anyone who’s used a pencil in school.
Ye Old curiosity shop – go here. if you only have to visit one place for shopping in downtown seattle to get souveniers. go here. then go feed the damn seagulls at ivars, then go check out the aquarium. this shop has been here since I WAS a little shit (what changed?). it has a dummy in a glass box that does shit when you put a quarter in. it has an old mummy. it has shrunken heads and 3 headed pigs n shit. true native american products. old coins and just plain weird shit. if you like creepy seattlelites like myself, then you’ll love this store. just to look and say, that’s creepy as fuck, i think i’ll buy something. there’s something for every denomination. beautiful jewelry for your every girl, and shining rocks for lack of finding a pearl. enjoy. this is not a secret. it is a must see. as much as the space needle. serious. fucking go. every age likes it.
Zippys Burgers best god damned burgers straight up mother fuckers. black bean option is damn fine too. get a great dane bean patty if you don’t believe me, with a side of onion rings and a chocolate / strawberry shake.