Hidden Gem – Pioneer Square

What to do in Pioneer Square Seattle

Hidden gems in Pioneer Square may go unnoticed by those not trained in natural history. You must visit the historic district to find the only spot in town that allows you to pan for gold, see antiques from the fire department, and travel underground to see the city’s ancient streets.

On #ThisDayInHistory 1917, a fire destroyed the Grand Opera House in downtown Seattle. One firefighter perished in the blaze and nine others were injured when the roof collapsed, destroying much of the interior. Eventually, the blaze was extinguished, although not before the building was entirely gutted. The building stood an empty skeleton for several years before being sold and remodeled into a parking garage. The Cherry Street Garage still stands today on Cherry Street, just off Third Avenue. #SeattleHistory #Seattle

Enjoyable, right? Read on to learn how you and your party may channel your inner explorer in the heart of Seattle.



Tunnel under the streets of Seattle.

It is possible to go underground with one of many tour groups. There was once a complete story or two below the present street level in the Pioneer Square area of Seattle. Approximately 25 frames of Seattle’s original core were destroyed in the Great Seattle Fire of 1889, prompting the city to re-grade and elevate its streets. As business owners redeveloped, they also brought up their shopfronts to remain at road level, effectively trying to bury the initial Seattle beneath the newer structures. The most well-known tour is led by Bill Speidel, who infuses Seattle’s historical lessons with his trademark sense of comedy. Beneath the Streets is a more recent Underground tour business that offers intimate, small-group outings.




You Can Eat Out or Get Coffee

Like other Seattle districts, Pioneer Square is filled with great places to eat. While Starbucks is the most well-known coffee shop in Seattle, you can get some of the city’s greatest coffee at local establishments, including Caffe D’Arte, Caffe Umbria, and Caffe Vita. Collins Pub and Biscuit Bitch are two bars in the area that provide simple but satisfying pub food. The fresh pasta at the modest but always bustling Il Corvo, or the oysters brought directly from Taylor Shellfish Farms to the table at the Taylor Shellfish Oyster Bar are just two examples of the many restaurants visitors must sample.

Engage in an Art Stroll

On the first Thursday of every month, beginning at 5 p.m., visitors from all around may enjoy free parking and an open invitation to explore the galleries in Pioneer Square as part of the First Thursday Art Walk. This is a great opportunity for anyone with even a passing interest in art to meet other people in the area who share their passion, find out more about local and international artists, and see what’s new at the galleries.




Find Some Hot Old Stories

The Last Resort Fire Department Museum is only open from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Thursdays, but if you have any interest in firetrucks, it’s well worth the trip. Staff continues to occupy the second level of the building, which serves as the headquarters for the Seattle Fire Department, while large firetrucks do as exhibitions in the basement.

Visit the Smith Tower Observatory and Take in the Scenery

The Smith Tower is Seattle’s oldest and most venerable skyscraper. In 1914, construction began on what would become the tower’s 35th-floor observation deck, which remains as popular as ever. To get a bird’s-eye view of the city, it used to cost just a quarter when it originally opened. Take a ride in a hand-operated, antique Otis elevator to the top of what was once the highest structure west of the Mississippi. The open-air observation deck provides a breathtaking panorama of the city, perfect for families. Smith Tower, one of the world’s earliest skyscrapers, was constructed in 1914. It’s no longer the tallest structure in Seattle or the West, but it hasn’t diminished the building’s historic significance or the quality of the tourist experience. Consider taking the Legends of Smith Tower tour while catching the elevator to the observation deck for an extra dose of history on this epic adventure. This fantastic tour is fun for people of all ages since it includes both humorous and intriguing anecdotes from the tower’s history (which spans the previous century).



The Seattle Sounders are coming to The Ninety, so be ready!

The Ninety at Sounders Headquarters in Pioneer Square is a must-visit for every Sounders fan. Visitors are welcome to come and check over the Club’s trophies and other memorabilia on game days. Stop by on game days to watch other games on the large screens while sipping a cold one.



Have a Blast

If you’re looking for a place to party in the early hours, go no further than Pioneer Square. Temple Billiards, Elysian Fields Brewery, and Collins Pub are the places to go if you’re in the mood for a chill evening.

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