Are you looking for fun things to do in Seattle in winter? Here are a few winter activities to check out in the Greater Seattle area.
Even though our days are shorter and colder, there are still lots of fun things to do in the Greater Seattle area in winter. From plant nurseries to Bavarian towns, there are great indoor and outdoor family activities.
1. Visit Leavenworth
Address: Leavenworth, WA 98826
One of the most popular winter activities outside of Seattle is to visit the Bavarian town in the Cascade Mountains. This Alpine-style village may be small, but it’s full of personality and perfect to visit during the holiday season.
Depending on the road/snow conditions, it’s about a 2 ½ drive from Seattle to Leavenworth. It’s worth a day trip or weekend trip if you’re able to book accommodations ahead of time. I recommend visiting Leavenworth during the weekdays if you can. Weekends are extremely busy during the holiday season.
If you aren’t sure what to do in Leavenworth your first time, here are a few spots I recommend:
- Leavenworth Nutcracker Museum: 735 Front St, Leavenworth, WA 98826
- Leavenworth Reindeer Farm: 10395 Chumstick Hwy, Leavenworth, WA 98826
- Danish Bakery for giant pretzels: 731 Front St, Leavenworth, WA 98826
- Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory for chocolate and sweets: 636 Front St, Leavenworth, WA 98826
You can also check out my previous guide: A December Weekend in Leavenworth, WA.
2. Visit a Sno-Park in the Cascade Mountains
Address: Lake Easton State Park
If you want to see snow during the winter, I recommend heading out to the mountains. One of my favorite spots I’ve been to is Hyak Sno-Park near Snoqualmie Pass. There are fun family activities like sledding or tubing as well as snowshoeing and skiing.
You can either pay for a Daily Sno-Park Permit or grab a seasonal Sno-park Permit. The great thing about visiting Hyak Sno-Park is that there are parking spaces available.
3. Wander through Swansons Nursery in Ballard
Address: 9701 15th Ave NW, Seattle, WA 98117
One of my favorite things to do during the holiday season in Seattle is to stop by Swansons Nursery. I love that the plant nursery goes all out in Christmas/holiday displays. Swansons Nursery offers Santa photos as well as beautiful displays of lights, trees, and decorations.
4. Stop by Carpinito Bros in Kent
Address: 1148 Central Ave N, Kent, WA 98032
If you’re looking for a fresh-cut Christmas tree south of Seattle, I recommend stopping by Carpinito Bros. This local plant nursery and business also set up holiday displays for photos as well as Christmas lights.
5. Visit Mountain Creek Christmas Tree Farm in Snoqualmie
Address: 6821 440th Ave SE, Snoqualmie, WA 98065
There are several Christmas tree farms around Snoqualmie and North Bend. The only one I’ve been to is Mountain Creek Tree Farm. I recommend checking their website to see when they’re open for the holiday season.
6. Wander through Pike Place Market in Downtown Seattle
Address: Pike Place Market, Seattle, WA
It’s always fun to wander through Pike Place Market regardless of the season. But during the holidays, the market puts up a Christmas tree and holiday lights. Additionally, there are hundreds of local businesses and vendors at Pike Place Market. It’s a great spot to shop local and pick up unique gifts for your loved ones!
Here are a few local shops in Pike Place Market:
- Magpie Mouse Studios: Sarah Meranda creates enamel jewelry.
- Driftwood: Mark Carpenter creates beautiful bowls, phone docks, and other statement pieces from driftwood.
- BLMF Literary Saloon: J.N. Johnson has owned and curated this bookstore for more than 17 years.
- Pike Place Pigs: Stephanie Shull creates ceramic piggy banks.
If you aren’t sure where to go in Pike Place Market for your first time, I recommend checking out: Your First Time Guide to Seattle: Where to Eat, Stay, and Explore.
7. Stop by Redmond Town Center to see the Christmas Tree
Address: 7525 166th Ave NE, Redmond, WA 98052
If you’re in the Redmond area and want to see a giant Christmas tree display, stop by Redmond Town Center. Redmond Town center is a great spot for holiday shopping too!
8. Get some holiday shopping done at University Village in Seattle
Address: 2623 NE University Village St, Seattle, WA 98105
One of my favorite shopping centers in Seattle is University Village in the University District. Ravenna Gardens always does a great job decorating for the holidays. And University Village also puts holiday décor up. Some of my favorite stores are at University Village, including:
- Anthropologie: 2676 NE University Village St, Seattle, WA 98105
- Everlane: 2618 NE University Village St, Seattle, WA 98105
- Madewell: 2666 NE University Village St, Seattle, WA 98105
- Sephora: 2676 NE University Village St, Seattle, WA 98105
9. Check out Snowflake Lane in Bellevue
Address: 227 Bellevue Way NE, Bellevue, WA 98004
From November 25th-December 24th, you can experience festive lights, dancers, and drummers at Snowflake Lane in Bellevue. Every night at 7 pm, there is a parade of holiday floats between Bellevue Square and Lincoln Square. It’s free to attend the parade and it’s recommended attendees arrive early to secure parking and a spot on the street.
10. Watch the Nutcracker at Pacific Northwest Ballet
Address: 301 Mercer St, Seattle, WA 98109
If you’re looking for a holiday family activity to enjoy indoors, I recommend booking your tickets ahead of time for the Nutcracker. George Balanchine’s The Nutcracker runs from November 25th-December 27th.
The ballet show is just over 2 hours with a 25-minute intermission. I’ve taken my family a few times and we love getting dressed up to go to the ballet.
What other winter activities in Seattle do you recommend checking out?
For more fun things to do around Seattle during the winter time and holiday content, check out:
4+ Sets of Matching Christmas Pajamas for Your Family and Dog
5 Tips to Help You Take Great Holiday Photos
6 Holiday Photo Poses for Your Christmas Cards
Thank you for reading!