We all know the cliche of a rainy city. The sun doesn’t rise or set over a grey sky. Seattle, Washington is a city often recognized for its stormy weather—50 Shades of Grey, Grey’s Anatomy, one under the weather Tom Hanks in ‘Sleepless in Seattle.’ While this representation is true, it’s not important, because Seattle is cloudy most of the time, yet still offers a colorful and exuberant nightlife. Located in the northwest of the United States, the Emerald City illuminates alongside its vibrant culture.
In this article, you will be introduced to one of Seattle’s most popular attractions, and four local favorites.
1. The Waterfront-Downtown
The colors of the Seattle Great Wheel reflect off of Puget Sound’s water through the darkness. Augmented above the piers and the water, this ferris wheel is a lovely place for couples, or groups of friends, who are looking to see the Seattle skyline from up close at night. There is no better view.
The Seattle Great Wheel is located on the waterfront, a busy place during the day, and a peaceful one at night. The wheel costs 13 USD per person, and is open until midnight on weekends.
2. Century Ballroom in Capitol Hill
Ask about a record store, a famous Mexican restaurant, or a dance hall, and a slim man with a well-groomed mustache will point you in the direction and say ‘about a block.’ You’ll pass several cheap eats, comic book stores, dive bars, and tattoo parlors on your way, and this is normal, because it’s Capitol Hill. It’s a large, eccentric hub next to downtown Seattle, and a place where a good night is a pretty easy find.
In the middle of it all, on Broadway and Pine Street, the Century Ballroom hosts salsa classes on Friday nights. They’re only 5 USD and for all levels of dancer. Expect to see college students, families, and a general population of those looking for a good time.
Right across from a fun session of dancing, you will find the Tin Table, a great up-scale bar. Try their ‘Old fashioned-old fashioned,’ an award winning take on the classic whiskey made drink. Their other drinks are also impressive.
Afterwards, head downstairs and treat yourself to a salted caramel, or fudge tracks ice cream cone at Molly Moon’s — a famous ice creamery in Seattle. And the crazy thing, all three of these places are located in the same building!
3. Bar hop on 36th st. in Fremont
The vibe is a little more relaxed in Fremont. A local beer, a craft Sazerac, and the city’s best grinder (a sandwich on a long roll) are all possibilities. Host to a classic atmosphere, it’s common to find exclusively whiskey or wine bars, or a melange of fine cuisines, but you can even find corner stores for cheap late-night snacks.
The Backdoor is the quintessential example. Attached to a New York-style diner, it’s draped in the confidence of a big city bar. The entrance is through the parking lot, illuminated with red neon bulbs on the door. As you walk in, it feels as if you’ve entered another realm. Statues, chandeliers and murals make up the decor, and the bar packs quite the drink too.
4. Find the best Mediterranean themed bars in Ballard
Ballard is known for its boat docks, salmon locks, and Scandinavian roots. There are plenty of fun restaurants, cozy pubs, and board game cafes for you to settle into. The neighborhood is its own entity — separated, yet attached to the city.
Two of the top bars surprisingly have themes from a different part of Europe. Ocho, is a Spanish Tapas bar with craft drinks and a convivial atmosphere, however, there’s nothing wrong with settling at one of their tables, ordering patatas bravas, pints of beer, and having a private conversation amongst friends. Bastille is a French restaurant with a back bar that serves the best French 75’s in the city. With an elegant interior, and a dignified bravado, this place asserts itself as a must-go bar in the city.
Both have a friendly, sophisticated crowd, and are bubbling with opportunities for socializing, and space to keep it intimate.
5. Play some Billiards on 45th st. in Wallingford
With playful bars and a suburban punk, Wallingford stakes its claim as the fifth place on the list. Here you can find cheap pool, and a strand of fun bars.
Kate’s Pub on Latona Ave and 45th has one table that is often vied over by cats from around the neighborhood. It’s a fun, competitive place with a great happy hour and sports on t.v. The Iron Bull, a grungy sports bar on Bagley Ave and 45th has a half dozen pool tables and a loud crowd. Nearby there are other fun places like the Octopus bar and the Seamonster lounge — both with aquatic names, but very different crowds. Right in the middle of it all is the famous burger place, open until 2 or 3 in the morning — Dick’s Hamburgers.
Wallingford is a neighborhood where everyone seems to know each other, and is a breath of fresh air from the city.
The Emerald City
If you get the chance to explore this part of the United States, you are sure to find a good time. Seattle has everything you need when the sun goes down, even if you might not actually see the sun going down.
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