A Seattle Local’s Guide to Pike Place Market

January 31, 2024

Are you looking for the ultimate guide to Pike Place Market, one of Seattle’s famous landmarks? You’ve come to the right place! Pike Place Market boasts a rich history and an array of shops showcasing fresh produce, local crafts, and artisanal goods. From the fishmongers' entertaining displays to the aromatic wafts of fresh flowers, the market offers a sensory experience unlike any other. Guests at Greenlake Guest House can easily explore this vibrant destination, adding a touch of local flavor to your Seattle getaway.

About Pike Place Market

Pike Place Market is an iconic destination for locals and visitors alike. Located just above the Seattle shoreline, hundreds of farmers, artisans, artists, and entertainers have found a home among the bustling energy of this public center. Boasting the title of one of the “oldest and largest” operated public markets, Pike Place Market has become the “soul of Seattle.” So much heart has gone into preserving the market since its founding in 1907. The community has flourished due to the rich pride behind small business success.

Pike Place Market is open all week long, as early as 9 am up until 5 pm, but if there are certain shops, restaurants, or booths you’d like to visit, make sure to plan ahead. We encourage guests to head to the market right after our made-to-order breakfast to avoid the mid-day crowds.

Snacking, Shopping, and Sightseeing

There are so many things to do at Pike Place Market that you’ll have a challenge picking out which shops and restaurants are must-sees. With over 200 shops and restaurants, what is most worth your time? Pike Place Chowder cannot be missed if you’re looking to dive into a classic coastal meal.


For drinks, tap into Old Stove Brewing Co. It boasts one of the best views and the finest craft beer, ciders, and wines. And to satisfy your sweet tooth, visit Crepe de France. It has mastered the art of sweet bites and decadent espresso since 1991. We also can’t forget about Storyville Coffee, an alternative to the more famous Starbucks Roastery. Storyville Coffee serves fresh pastries, coffee, and espresso in a very pretty setting. We love its beautiful views of the Market and Puget Sound. We also serve Storyville Coffee at our B&B!


When it comes to strolling and shopping, plenty of Pike Place Market shops draw you in and entertain you for days. One of our favorite food stalls is Chuker Cherries. The delicious dried and chocolate-covered cherries come in pretty boxes that make thoughtful gifts or souvenirs. Alongside unique stalls like Chuker Cherries, you’ll find stores that have made a permanent home within the Market. MarketSpice has been wafting aromas of fresh spice and tea since 1911- a treat to your nose! Their signature Black Cinnamon-Orange Market Spice tea is one we keep on hand at Greenlake Guest House. Gifts for friends and family, mementos to commemorate your trip, and even specialty foods may be purchased all around the market. Pike Place Gifts and Made in Washington are great for all three.


If you're visiting Pike Place Market but aren’t looking to splurge, there are plenty of free things to do to keep you entertained. Keep your camera handy...the Market is a photographer's dream. Snap a few pictures in front of the iconic main Market sign at the end of Pine St and Pike St—with a bountiful bouquet of fresh flowers. You can also venture down Post Alley and make your mark amongst the rest on the ever-popular Gum Wall… it really smells like gum! Make sure to venture down to the Pike Place MarketFront to enjoy picturesque views of Elliot Bay and even Mt. Rainer on a clear day.


View down the main aisle in Pike Place Market, bustling with people and light-up neon signs

Events and Entertainment

Since Pike Place Market is open 363 days out of the year, you are almost guaranteed to experience something special during your Seattle excursion. Some stand-out signature events during the calendar year include Daffodil Day, which celebrates the first day of spring, and the annual Magic in the Market during the holidays. Plan your visit around these special events, or watch the market events calendar for cool happenings year-round. No matter the time of year, there will surely be an event to include in your 3-day itinerary from Greenlake Guest House.

Seattle’s historic landmark also prides itself in celebrating the talents of local musicians and entertainers. Over 60 registered acts bring life and sound to the streets of Pike Place Market. Witness spectacular magic acts, visually expressive performances, and comical shows all along one stretch of a street!

What Pike Place Market is Famous For

Pike Place Market is famous for vibrant energy, bustling stalls, ongoing entertainment, and fresh, local produce. Pike Place Market is also famous for its incredible flowers. Consider treating yourself to a gorgeous bouquet of inexpensive, locally-grown flowers. Another famous sight is a spectacular show of flying fish at Pike Place Fish Market. Fishmongers chuck heavy fish across counters to fulfill orders, an act that is both for business and pleasure. Experience their humor firsthand as they toy with you and other customers witnessing the show.

Make your visit to Pike Place Market unique by visiting a few hidden gems off the beaten path worth discovering. The Secret Garden is a great place to “relax, rejuvenate, and learn!” Not only does it provide a great view of Elliot Bay, but it is also a flourishing community gem that donates to the local food bank. You may also wander the twists and turns of Pike Place Market, finding mystic art installations, charming shops, and goodies. Just keep digging!

Plan your Visit Getting to the Market

Now that you know its ins and outs, you must map out your itinerary. Like many popular destinations, the Pike Place Market hours are busiest from Thursday through Monday. So, if you’re looking to beat the crowds, the best time to visit Pike Place Market would be a morning, weekday excursion. And while there is so much to do and see on your own, many guided tours also help you make the most out of your experience. We often recommend the Savor Seattle Food Tour of Pike Place Market to our guests. You can get to Pike Place Market easily from our B&B via the E-line bus, the light rail, or by car. If you drive, the Market has a large underground garage you can enter from the north side of the Market.

Your ultimate guide to Pike Place Market is just the tip of the iceberg. Your Seattle getaway should be filled with memories, adventures, and comfort. At Greenlake Guest House, we pride ourselves on checking off your comfort box. With five rooms to choose from, made-to-order breakfasts, and an optimal walking distance from local favorites, you’ll wish you’d never have to leave. Book your stay, and we’ll be counting down the days till we can accommodate your next adventure!