There are a lot of different reasons to go to a conference. One of them is the availability of fun and interesting things for you to do when you take a break from the Conference sessions. We love Seattle and we know you’ll love it too. Set up your own custom itinerary with the help of 2 Days in Seattle. If you’re the type who likes to do some exploring, you’ll find a wealth of interesting activities within a short walk or ride from the conference hotel. Simply grab your phone for a self-guided walking tour or take advantage of the Motif Seattle concierge who can provide you with detailed information about just about everything there is to do in the Seattle area. They can also help with ticket purchases and dinner reservations. The concierge is located in the main lobby of the hotel.The Motif offers a wonderful location for visitors. Located in the city center, you have easy access to restaurants, tourist activities, and shopping. The neighborhoods surrounding the city center provide a vibrant arts and cultural scene.
Easy Ground Transportation
The city has a great range of transportation including free downtown bus service, passenger ferries to the islands, a streetcar to Lake Union, the monorail to the Space Needle, and plentiful taxis. Seattle is also a very walkable city with safe streets and friendly people.
- The Seattle Map and Walks app is free and offers a lot of great information about things to do in the area.
The conference hotel is perched on the north end of the core downtown area. Many of Seattle’s finest stores and restaurants are located between 4th and 7th Streets and Olive and University. Check out the Frolic bar in the Motif Hotel. It has a great atmosphere with an outdoor deck.
One of the nearby hidden secrets of Seattle (even unknown to most locals) is the awesome landscaped park in the Russell Investment Center at 2nd and Union. Go to the middle bank of elevators and take it to the 17th floor. This is a public easement provided to Seattle as part of the development license.
Pike Place Market and Waterfront
Heading in the direction of the waterfront you’ll find Pike Place Market. This historic area features hundreds of small shops and eateries. Come early to the market and enjoy pastries from Le Panier or grab a drink from local shops like Vivachi Café or Storyville Coffee. The market also hosts the famous fish and produce markets. Walk through the free Pike Pub Micro Brewery Museum or browse for souvenirs and locally made arts and crafts.
The stairs or elevators in the market will take you down to the waterfront, a great place for seafood and to watch the ferries and freighters move through Elliot Bay. Harbor tours depart from this area. The public passenger ferry to Bainbridge Island offers excellent views of the city and Puget Sound for about six bucks. The Seattle Great Wheel has great views.
The Space Needle and the EMP
Take the historic monorail to the Seattle landmark Space Needle for incredible views of Puget Sound and the Olympic and Cascade Mountains. On a clear day you can see as far as the Canadian and Oregon borders. Adjacent to the Needle is the Museum of Pop Culture (MoPOP). In addition to the main exhibits, there are always special attractions like Star Trek: Exploring New Worlds.
North of Pike Place Market is the Belltown neighborhood. There are many bars and restaurants located along First and Second Avenues. The Olympic Sculpture Park is here as well. South from Pike Place Market is Pioneer Square. This is the oldest commercial area in Seattle. The area is made up of historic buildings that are now home to shops, restaurants, and the Underground Tour. In the evening, many of the restaurants feature live bands. Another popular area for nightlife is Capitol Hill. The restaurants and clubs are mostly found between Pine and Pike and Broadway and 13th.
A couple of interesting shops have opened with Seattle ties. The first-ever Amazon brick and mortar store is now open in University Village. You can get to it with a short express bus ride or taxi from downtown. If you are a Starbucks fan, you’ll want to check out the Roastery and Tasting Room on Capitol Hill. This facility lets you watch the roasting and offers a lot of drinks and drink preparations that you won’t find in other stores.
Dining and the Arts
For a custom-designed tour of eats and drinks in Seattle, check out the Dining Guide prepared for ConveyUX by local foodie Adria Saracino.
Great restaurants nearby include Assaggio, The Dahlia Lounge, Lola, Palace Kitchen, RN74, and Tango. The Westlake Center Mall is four blocks away and has a Subway, Taco del Mar, PF Chang’s, a food Court, four levels of shops, and the monorail station. A great bar for classic cocktails is Oliver’s in the Mayflower Park Hotel at 4th & Olive.
- Blink’s Jen Nicosia has put together a custom Google guide of local craft brew pubs.
A ten-minute walk from Motif Seattle is the Seattle Art Museum (SAM). The collections include an emphasis on Northwest and Native American art. The Performing Arts within walking distance of the conference hotel include the Seattle Opera (Beatrice & Benedict) and the Seattle Symphony (National Geographic Live).
There is a lot of great public art in Seattle and it is well-documented in a series of free walking tour maps.
You can also find a lot of eclectic evening fun as described in the Seattle Nightlife guide by local Lani Bonadea.
Beyond the city center are many interesting activities including cruises, visits to the Museum of Flight, the Bloedel Reserve, the Boeing Tour, and a tour of Lake Washington. If you have more time and the weather cooperates, watch spawning steelhead salmon make their way through the Ballard Locks, take a day trip to Victoria in Canada, or explore Mt. St. Helen’s National Volcanic Monument. Skiing often lasts into April in the Cascades. Hiking is almost always possible in the Hoh Rain Forest and beaches of Olympic National Park.
- Seeing Seattle by the Book
- Reel Life in Seattle – An Insider’s Guide to Seattle Film Locations
- The Seattle Bucket List
- Living Computer Museum
- The very cool Seattle Central Library
- Chihuly Glass Art Tour – Tacoma Walking Tour of Public Art
- Glass Blowing Gallery
- Henry Art Gallery
- Seattle Art Museum – “Figuring History“
- Seattle Chocolates factory tour
- Dinner shows at Teatro Zinzanni