Seattle

Pike Place Market, overlooking Elliott Bay, is one of the oldest public markets in the United States and Seattle’s most popular tourist destination. The combination of a scenic waterfront view, a collection of one-of-a-kind shops, and local food vendors and restaurants makes this a must-visit for over 10 million visitors annually. Many of the buildings are designated as landmarks and registered as historic places and the market continues to thrive after over 100 years.

History

Public Market Sign Black and White

The Pike Place Market was founded in 1907 by local farmers looking to sell directly to the public. The public was quite happy with this because the middlemen were hiking up prices for the end consumer. The market grew rapidly with many stalls and buildings being added to keep up with the popularity as well as the population growth, and by 1922 it had grown to over nine acres with 11 buildings across the bay side. The market also survived being demolished after World War II because most vendors were forced away to internment camps. But the area was saved thanks to Victor Steinbrueck, who campaigned to establish the area as an historic district. Now, the market prospers with over 500 vendors, shops, and places to dine and drink.

Things To Do

Pike Place Market Fish

Drink: Coffee

You can visit the first Starbucks Coffee location here right in front of the main building’s entrance. While there are many Starbucks locations in the area, this is the original storefront that started it all. However, since you’ll find the same products there that are everywhere else, consider trying something new. Storyville Coffee, one of our #FlavorSeattle partners, has a location here that offers their fresh roasted signature blend sourced from three different continents. Also, they donate proceeds from their sales to a really great cause. Visit them on the top floor of the Corner Market Building at First & Pike.

Eat: Everything

The market is full of various cafes, bakeries, restaurants, and take-out counters so the best strategy is to go with some friends and share many things. Start with a Piroshky, a Russian pastry, at Piroshky Piroshky Bakery. You can order these portable pies with savory or sweet ingredients, so it’s the perfect handheld food to carry while you continue your Pike Place Market food tour. Other notable favorites include Korean chicken wings at Chan, al pastor tacos at Los Agaves, and the New England Clam Chowder at Pike Place Chowder.

Shop: For Fun

With over 150 sellers offering local goods such as fresh produce, artisan crafts, clothes, and gifts, Pike Place Market is a shopper’s dream. Make sure to bring [at least] a couple of tote bags to carry your treasures and in between shopping sprees, you can rest while being entertained by the lively buskers (street performers). Some of our favorite shops include: MarketSpice, Golden Age Collectibles, Market Magic Shop, and Indi Chocolate.

Visit

So many dynamic people are involved with this historic area that travelers experience something new with every visit. When you check it out for the first time, make sure to stop by the legendary Gum Wall and ride the Great Wheel.

The newly redesigned Loews Hotel 1000 is only a hop, skip, and a jump away (ie: half a mile) — making it easy to stay nearby and give yourself more time to explore this unique area that continues to reinvent itself. For more information, please visit: http://pikeplacemarket.org.

David