When you think of Seattle, the Space Needle is usually what comes to mind so our trip to Seattle wouldn’t be complete without a visit to the Space Needle. The funny thing is that we lived in this area about 20 years ago for 3 years and never actually went up it. So this trip was going to be the time to finally see it.

Space Needle in Seattle, WA as seen from the ground.
Space Needle

We got tickets as part of the CityPass, and the line was not long at all on a Saturday in April. It was the best weather day during our trip so everything aligned well for this visit.

Fun Facts About The Space Needle

  • It took about 400 days to build the Space Needle, which is extremely fast for something of this scale
  • There is only one motor that turns the restaurant, and it uses only one horsepower.
  • The design included a natural gas torch on the top. The flame was there when it opened, but was removed at some point, and around 2000, replaced by a beam that projects into the sky.
  • For all of us Olympic fans, the Space Needle celebrated with a fireworks display the Olympic Torch Relay in 1996 as it went through Seattle with a fireworks display on its way to Atlanta for the Summer Games.

Fascinating Reading While In Line

Once we got inside the building and stood in line for the elevator, we saw all of these photos from Life magazine of the construction for the 1962 World’s Fair. The articles were fun to read and gave us a proper perspective on how fast this was built and what had to be done to get it all finished in time. There were also interactive displays about the materials used, such as e the size of the bolts or the 1 horsepower motor used to turn the restaurant.

Views At The Top Of The Space Needle

Once we got to the top floor of the Space Needle, we could go outside and really see Seattle. The Museum of Pop Culture is an excellent view from the top. We could walk around and see landmarks such as the International Fountain, boats in Lake Union, or the fantastic Seattle skyline with the ferries going back and forth.

Once we were done with the outside views, we went down one floor to view the turning part of the top. We could stand in one place and the floor would slowly turn so we could see the entire 360 degree view. There were even glass panels in the floor that enabled us to see straight down. That was a little disorienting at times, but fun.

Outside The Space Needle

There are a lot of museums and attractions around the Space Needle. The Museum of Pop Culture shares the monorail, the Pacific Science Museum, the Chihuly Garden & Glass Museum, and a lot of others. We could have easily spent a whole day in this part of Seattle.

Space Needle, Museum of Pop Culture and monorail track view from outside on the ground
The Space Needle, monorail track, and the Museum of Pop Culture