Sky View Observatory
Set high in the Columbia Center—one of Seattle’s tallest buildings—the Sky View Observatory is a spectacular vantage point for looking at the city. To reach the observation floor, step into the elevator whose screens scroll through the area’s history as you glide upwards. Views are enhanced by interactive installations exploring the landmarks you’ll spot on the skyline; the Sky View Café pairs light food and drinks with the unbeatable views.
Things to know before you go
- Since you can spot key landmarks from here, the Sky View Observatory is a great first stop when visiting Seattle.
- Tickets for the Sky View Observatory can be purchased online or at the 4th Avenue Sky View Observatory box office.
- Timed entries give you a 30-minute window for starting your visit, but you can stay as long as you want.
- Children aged four and under are free but need a ticket for entry.
- Only service animals are allowed into Sky View Observatory.
How to get there
The Sky View Observatory is located in the Columbia Center building at 700, 4th Avenue in downtown Seattle. While street parking is limited during busy hours, multiple parking garages are available nearby. Bus stops are located on 3rd Avenue and Columbia Street, and the Pioneer Square Light Rail Station is one block away.
When to get there
Open daily from 10am, the Sky View Observatory closes at 10am from Memorial Day weekend to Labor Day weekend, and closes at 8am during the rest of the year. If you’re stuck between choosing a daytime visit and an after-dark trip, there’s a “day and night” option that includes two visits to the observatory in a single day.
Taking Pictures in the Sky View Observatory
While the fabulous views are any photographer’s dream, shooting through the glass windows can present special challenges. The Sky View Observatory’s in-house photographer recommends wrapping a dark cloth or scarf around your lens to limit reflections from the glass; for capturing the city at night, a tripod is a must.
- Capitol Hill
- Seattle Chinatown-International District
- Waterfall Garden Park
- Washington State Ferries
- Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park - Seattle Unit
- Tillicum Village
- Seattle Art Museum (SAM)
- Seattle Waterfront
- Pioneer Square
- Hard Rock Cafe Seattle
- Pike Place Market
- Original Starbucks
- Seattle Great Wheel
- Seattle Aquarium
- T-Mobile Park