Seattle Family Activities: Things to Do for Different Age Groups

Many know Seattle as Starbuck’s hometown and the birth of grunge rock. However, the city offers a water lover’s destination complete with family-friendly attractions. Scenic rides, sports, museums and fun — families find it all in Seattle. To get ideas, check out these Seattle family activities and plan a trip to Washington.

Seattle Family Activities: 8 Things to Do for New Adventures

seattle family activities summer

Swim at Beaches and Lakes

Seattle Parks and Recreation oversees nine swimming beaches, and all have lifeguards on duty. One of the most popular spots for swimming in Seattle is Green Lake beaches. The lake offers two lakes – East Green and West Green – both of which have bathrooms, boat rentals, basketball courts and play areas. In addition, Green Lake beaches rank as the warmest place to swim in Seattle.

Other areas where families can boat and swim include Madison Park, Madrona Park, Mount Baker Beach, and Pritchard Island Beach.

Tour Museums

Art, culture and history are all important in Seattle. The city pays homage to all three by supporting museums that celebrate special interests and exploration. While visiting museums ranks among the top Seattle family activities, those with children have some favorites.

Pop culture fans love MoPop, Museum of Pop Culture. This attraction showcases influential music, movies, people and trends in pop culture. A few musts for families feature video games, sci-fi and learning labs.

Younger children ages birth to 8 enjoy playing at Seattle Children’s Museum. Families find over a dozen exhibits where children use their imagination and learn. Let them roam COG City, visit the pretend eye clinic, shop and put on a show at Bijou Theater.

Other family-friendly museums in Seattle range from Chihuly Garden and Glass, The Museum of Flight, Center for Wooden Boats, Pacific Science Center, and Seattle Pinball Museum.

seattle things to do vacation

Enjoy Ferry Rides

Ferry rides provide an easy way to sight-see and visit a new place. The city’s location on Puget Sound offers proximity to other towns in Washington and Canada.

For a day trip, take the downtown Seattle ferry to Bainbridge Island. Once on land, share a picnic with loved ones, visit beaches, walk trails and see a show at the community theater. Read about other ferry ride destinations near Seattle.

Attend Children’s Theater

Take the family to Seattle Children’s Theater. This popular attraction strives to provide all ages access to professional theater and theater education. Live shows cater to all children, even those who have special requests. The theater hosts performances modified for sensory needs, ASL interpreted performances and audio described shows.

Seattle Children’s Theater hosts shows throughout the year, and they change annually. Past performances have told the story of Snow White, Black Beauty and Corduroy the bear. Children also enjoy taking classes and participating in projects.

seattle family vacation activities

See Marine Life

Touring Seattle Aquarium ranks among the top Seattle family activities due to its exhibits. Visitors won’t just find fish here. They also learn about birds, mammals, other marine life and invertebrates.

The aquarium cares for animals from the Pacific Northwest region as well as the world. Tropical Pacific has an octopus, jellies, hundreds of fish and touch pools. The Pier 60 section overlooks Puget Sound complete with harbor seals, sea otters, river otters and salmon. On the lower level, check out Puget Sound fish and underwater dome. In addition to exhibits, families watch dive shows, attend story times and meet animals.

Ride Great Wheel

For a fun ride and amazing photo ops, ride Great Wheel. It ranks among the tallest Ferris wheels on the West Coast and offers unforgettable views of Seattle’s waterfront and Mount Rainer on clear days.

At night, Great Wheel glows with over 500,000 LED lights. During weekends, families also enjoy light show displays. To ride, head to Pier 57, and children 2 and younger ride free.

seattle activities sports family

Cheer for the Home Teams

No matter what time of year, there’s a game in Seattle. The city’s collegiate and professional sports scenes draw millions of guests every year to stadiums and fields around the region.

Football fans can watch NFL’s Seahawks or University of Washington Huskies. Baseball fans cheer for Seattle Mariners. Or keep up with action-packed soccer and hockey. Seattle has both men’s and women’s teams, including a roller derby and WNBA teams.

Take a Chocolate Tour

Know some chocoholics? Take a chocolate tour, which ranks among the top Seattle family activities and best things to do. Savor Seattle offers several tours, but dessert lovers can’t miss this one.

On the tour, learn about the city’s history with chocolate and how it’s made. Then sample chocolates and truffles, cheesecakes, cupcakes, and ice cream. Families visit 13 places in two hours, making this a tasty sightseeing option.

Read more about this vibrant city and search Seattle vacation rentals. Then read why Seattle has one of the best Christmas boat parades in the U.S.