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Instagrammer's Guide to Seattle


Explore the near, far, and the places in-between of Seattle.

Explore the near, far, and the places in-between of Seattle -- a great destination for photographers at any level of experience. Despite a reputation for rainy days, Seattle has temperate weather, and the city is surrounded by the blue Elliott Bay with mountain ranges towering over the skyline. Aside from natural photo spots, there are also cool shops, colorful walls, and trendy Instagram hotspots to visit. Seattle is renowned as an inclusive community of artists and creators, so don't miss a visit to the Seattle gayborhood in Capitol Hill with its rainbow crosswalks and cute eateries.

Top Places in Seattle for the Best Photos

Pike Place Market

The iconic market overlooking Elliott Bay, Pike Place Market sits directly on the waterfront and still operates today as a public farmers' market. It's one of the oldest ones in the United States and whether it's getting photos from many of the shops and vendors inside, or a shot of the iconic neon sign, there are hundreds of photo opportunities at Pike Place.

Capitol Hill Rainbow Crosswalks

Unveiled in 2015, Seattle's first openly gay mayor Ed Murray had rainbow crosswalks painted in Seattle's gayborhood in Capitol Hill--a year-round reminder that Seattle is "a place where we are tolerant and accepting," he said at its initial unveiling. Today, the Rainbow Crosswalks are an important fixture in Capitol Hill and they even have their own geotagged location on Instagram. Grab an ice cream from the cute Molly Moon shop and snap a pic while exploring the area.

Sky View Observatory

A 360-degree panoramic view over Seattle, the Sky View Observatory is the best spot in the city (better than the Space Needle) for an immersive view. Plus, from the Sky View, you can get a photo of the Space Needle from above--and on a clear day you'll see plenty of mountains nearby, including Mt. Rainier. The 73rd floor observatory isn't free, but it's the tallest view of the city.

The Museum of Pop Culture

Frank Gehry designed and created this building with his deconstructivist style. The colorful reflective buildings that make up the MoPOP (previously called the EMP museum) have become an iconic fixture in the Seattle skyline. Exhibits inside are equally interesting for those interested in pop culture.

Olympic Sculpture Park

Managed by the Seattle Art Museum (an equally interesting spot for art photographers), the Olympic Sculpture Park is a free outdoor gallery with about 20 monumental sculptures. Wander down the main path from the street level down to the shoreline and you'll spot works by Alexander Calder, Ellsworth Kelly, and a large fountain and sculpture. The views of Elliot Bay and the mountains across offer equally picturesque views -- great for the sunset.

Hot Tub Boat Rentals

If you want to cruise in boat... that's also a hot tub, Seattle has got you covered. With hot tub boat rentals available for groups of six, all that's needed to take one of these boats onto the water are good friends and a driver's license. Take some amazing shots of Seattle's waterscapes as you listen to tunes from the boat's high-quality stereo. Just don't forget to bring along a waterproof phone case!

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Adam Groffman