Seeing Seattle from Space (Needle)

Space Needle, Seattle

If you could see one thing in Seattle, go to that one place that shows you everything, suggests the brochure of the most popular structure of the city. Now, if you look at the skyline of the city of Seattle in Washington State, you will see that there is one building that stands out like nothing else — The Space Needle.

After chancing upon several photographs of this structure, and reading about the design of this structure, I’d been looking forward to seeing this specimen of engineering excellence (It is said, it handle winds up to 200 mph and brave severe lightening and even made to brave an earthquake up to the magnitude of 9.1, considering it is on the US west coast).

We had Space Needle on the top of our list of Things-to-do-in-Seattle. Now if you know these parts well, you also know that it lies in a part of the United States that is wet for most of the year. So we had to keep looking at the local weather forecasts and looking out for a sunny day that only plays cameos even in Spring. That found, we booked our tickets online (this is advised) and made a dash for Space Needle as soon as we got to Emerald city.

Space Needle, Seattle
Space Needle standing 605 ft tall.

I hear this place get over a million visitors a year. Here’s why:

Space Needle, Seattle
A view of the city of Seattle and Elliot Bay, WA
Space Needle, Seattle
Seattle from 520 ft.
Space Needle, Seattle
Lake Union and more of Seattle.
Space Needle, Seattle
Puget Sound

Now, these spectacular 360 degree views can also be taken in after sun down, when Emerald City turns into a sparkling city. We visited in May when the days had already gotten longer and that meant that the sun doesn’t set until around 8:30 in the evening. Having visited this observation tower before noon, we went about ticking some other points on the to-do lit. Later, after we were done with all that we had planned for the day, we were back at Space Needle before dark and that meant waiting in a longer line, even though we had already picked up tickets for our second visit to this landmark.

It also meant we had to wait for the long day to meet the night. In spite of the wait, we were up on the observation deck before dark. While we waited for night to take over the scene, we picked up some Starbucks coffee and some chips, found a table and sat down to watch the show of the sky turning from orange to grey and then a deep blue and the city lights slowly coming on till it felt like we were looking down at Seattle from a plane that was awaiting permission to land.

It was a totally different scene at night: bright lights ornamenting the tall buildings of Seattle, the boats of Union Lake, the clearly cut-out waterfront area that overlooks Elliot Bay and Puget Sound and the Seattle Wheel are just some of them. Up there at night, I could even see the lights of cars zipping down Interstate 5 (I-5); at first, I thought it was a train rushing by.

My night-time photos from the Space Needle are not the best. Most of them ended up with some glares from the Sky Cafe as there was no escaping the glass exterior of the Observation Desk.

After-dark sights from the Space Needle

Space Needle, Seattle
Space Needle, Seattle
Space Needle, Seattle
Space Needle, Seattle
  • I recommend buying tickets online. You can pick a time that suits you. If you’d like to see Seattle from Space Needle during the day and after dark, you could take the day/night pass or combine your Space Needle visit with Chihuly Garden of Glass, just next door. If you are doing the latter you won’t have to bother about parking while you visit the second attraction. Btw, there’s valet parking also. (Click here for tickets and types of tickets.)
  • Sunny days are best days for views from Space Needle. If you’d like to see night views and city lights, you might want to make bookings for night viewing as well. If you are into photography, I’m sure even rainy and cloudy days –which this place has no dearth of — will give you lots of photo opportunities.
  • Attention, Mommies and daddies – Strollers are not allowed into the sky deck. But the baby car seats can be carried to the top. You can leave your strollers in the stroller-parking area, close to ground level. 
  • When we visited, my baby-number-2 was just a few months old. I carried her around in a baby carrier. Wearing her on me made it easy to walk around the Sky deck and take in the 360-degree views. (Hubby offered to take over when I decided to go get some pictures of the view.)
  • Wheelchairs are allowed inside.
  • You might want to take some warm clothing, it can get cold up there. 
Oh, and there is a revolving restaurant up there, just below the observation deck.

Thank you for the votes, Indibloggers.
Thank you for featuring this post on
Tangy Tuesday Picks, TeamBlogadda.


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  1. This was really interesting + those views are spectacular! Wow!

  2. great views…I have to get to Seattle one day soon!

  3. Oh, you bring back memories … I was up there maybe ten years ago (amazing how time flies) and saw all of these beautiful views. I didn't, however, get to see it at night, so that was a surprise. Thank you D., this was a real pleasure …

    Andrea @ From The Sol

  4. Amazing views, Divya. Never heard about it before. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

    • I have a thing for views like this. So I was dying to go see this place. I'm glad it happened.
      Now you have (heard about it) 😉 The pleasure is mine, Ravish. 🙂

  5. Ah, yes!! I lived in Seattle for a number of years and still travel there frequently from my current home In Portland, OR. It's a great city and the Space Needle is indeed awesome!! Great post for the day, thanks for the memories!!

    • Hi Sylvia,
      Welcome here.
      I'm sure Seattle is a great city. And Portland is too. Gosh! The Pacific Northwest is so beautiful. I hope you are enjoying the sunny days. 🙂
      Thank YOU, Sylvia for stopping by and leaving a comment.

  6. What a breathtaking view both from Inside the needle and of the needle;. Just now I was reading updates from a friend who is attending Moz con and then comes this… Seattle is in news 🙂

    • Breathtaking indeed. And I just came across a story on minimum wages and tips in restaurants in Seattle. Looks like it IS in the news.
      Lemme pretend this is the lead story (in travel, atleast) :D.

      Thank you, Prasad.

  7. Wow amazing view, thank you for taking us through the tour of the beautiful Seattle..

  8. WOW! Seattle means rain, rain and more rain. You were wise to check for weather before making trip plans. Night view is gorgeous. I have never been to a high rise landmark, I wish I could see one city like this.

    • Yes, the Pacific Northwest means — a whole lot of rain.
      I haven't done justice to the night view, I swear.

      You should. It is quite a visual treat, Saru.

  9. That certainly is the spot to see Seattle.

    Worth a Thousand Words

  10. City well captured in day and night Divya!!

    • Thank you, Magiceye. It was a marvellous sight!

      I wish my night pics were better tho' — without those reflections, I mean. The city looked splendid at night.

  11. This seems spectacular… You brought entire Seattle to me… amazingly detailed post! Loved it! 🙂

  12. Picturesque views.Excellent and detailed post.Had a delightful virtual tour.

  13. Amazing views Divya:) Thank you for this virtual trip:)

  14. Oh my my! Touching the clouds up in the sky. Its a visual treat of Seattle from the Space Needle D.

  15. I love your night scenes. Looks very nice 🙂

  16. Great series of images.

  17. Cool! I like the protection provided, gives me a great sense of safety sitting here in Bangalore. Great shots!

  18. Yet another place I now yearn to visit after reading this lovely post and equally enticing pics, Divya:)

    • I'm so, so glad to hear that, Mr. Bhatia. You made my day. I hope you get to see Seattle soon and yes — see it from the top of this observation tower too. 🙂

      I hope you are doing well. 🙂

  19. I love your night time photos from the Space needle. Haven't ever been to Seattle but my interest was piqued by it thanks to Grey's Anatomy – hehehehe – and now your fabulous shots and description.

  20. It always gives a different perspective when you see the city from above. Isn't it? And at night time, it becomes even more interesting.

    P.S.- Request you to enable Name/Url option for commenting. I can comment it from anywhere. Here, I am forced to login to my blogger profile instead of independent one.

    • It does, Nisha. I love views like this and trying to figure out all that I can spot from up there.
      Thank you so much for visiting.

      I've done that, Nisha. I thought the Open ID would be enough coz that option let me keep anonymous visitors at bay. 🙂

      Thanks again, Nisha.

  21. Awesome pictures, i loved you putting together both day and night ones! I am amazed it survived earthquake of that magnitude!

    Must visit if we go to Seattle.

    • Thank you so much. Alok.
      I meant, it is supposed to withstand an earthquake of that magnitude. This is the Pacific Ring of Fire, after all.

      Yes you must. It's a great city.
      Thanks again, Alok.

  22. Congratulations ! Your blog post has been featured in the Tangy Tuesday edition of 21st July at BlogAdda. Cheers :)

  23. Congratulations ! Your blog post has been featured in the Tangy Tuesday edition of 21st July at BlogAdda. Cheers 🙂
    Check here :

    • And thank you for the link. I first checked under the featured post and didn't find it.
      It was from the link you guys sent that I figured it was on the Blogadda blog.
      Thanks again, and Cheers, back!

  24. spectacular view and a wonderful post. 🙂
    A Rat's Nibble

  25. Now that's a virtual tour dear ! loved it … so that's why some people are sleepless in Seattle 😛

    • Thank you, Kokila. 🙂
      If I lived in Seattle, I would have loved to spend my sleepless nights on this tower and watch the lights come in and go out. (even watch the natural lights come on again. 🙂 )

  26. Breathtaking views, of both daytime and nighttime shots, accompanied with your useful tips, as usual.

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