Pike Place Market in downtown Seattle has many retail shops and attractions to explore. Plenty of guides talk about the Gum Wall, Rachel the Pig, flying fish, and the “first” Starbucks. Our list points out some of the more obscure locations in the Pike Place Market Historical District where you can while away the better part of a day, perhaps to do some shopping, or stop for a nosh here and there to keep up your strength. Whether you are a resident or return visitor, you’ll likely find something interesting and new in our list of suggestions.
Pike Place Market is open seven days a week and closed only on Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day. General Market hours are 9 am- 6 pm and Sundays 9 am-5 pm. The hours of individual businesses vary. Many restaurants and eateries open earlier and close later.
Before you go, visit the Market website to Plan Your Visit where you can download maps and guides for self-guided tours and exploration.
10 places at Pike Place Market to while away time
Arranged roughly going south to north through the nine-acre market district.
- Eighth Generation, 93 Pike Street, Seattle, WA 98101. Located in the “Atrium” just off of 1st Ave. The Native-owned and operated company based in Seattle was founded in 2008 by Louie Gong (Nooksack), an artist, activist and educator widely known for merging traditional Coast Salish art with influences from his urban environment to make strong statements about identity. Today, Eighth creates opportunities for cultural artists who struggle to meet demand for their handmade cultural art to bring their Native-made and designed products to market.
- Pike Place Rooftop Urban Garden. Grab a snack or beverage and find this hideway accessed by the hallway under “The Clock” and to the left, between Marketspice and Don & Joe’s meat counter. Head towards the Maximilian restaurant sign, but before you get to the restaurant, take the hallway to the left leading to the garden. It is open to the public during daylight hours and offers a quiet respite just steps from the bustle of the market. Produce from the garden (grown by volunteers) is donated to the Pike Market Senior Center and Food Bank.
- Down Under. Head to the clock (corner of Pike St. and Pike Pl.) and find the nearby stairs (to the right of the fish stall) to the labyrinthine Market lower levels, “down under” the Main Arcade. The small, owner-operated businesses include bookstores, art galleries, clothing stores, and a magic shop, among others. Find anything from games and toys, to clothing and books, antiques, jewelry, leather, pottery and many other unique and quirky goods.
- Sanitary and Corner Markets. Enter the Corner Market on the north side of Pike St. halfway between 1st Ave and Pike Place. Work your way north through the Sanitary Market (where live animals were once not allowed…and still aren’t!). Find a variety of shops and eateries to explore.
- Metsker Maps, 1511 First Ave, Seattle, WA 98101. One of, if not THE largest map stores in the country. Find maps of all types: folded maps, wall maps, maps for kids, topography and hiking maps, relief maps, zip code maps, nautical charts, local maps, national maps, world maps, antique map reprints, plus globes, travel guides, atlases, geography gifts, flags, map pins and dots, and many other map-related objects.
- Sur La Table (On Pine Street just off Pike Place). If you love to cook or eat (or both), plan to visit the first Sur La Table store and browse the pots and pans, dishes, kitchen gadgets, cookbooks and more. On weekends, they often have demos or tastings. Ask where the discount shelf is located to find deals on miscellaneous merchandise. The first ever Sur La Table opened in downtown Seattle in 1972 and moved to the Pike Place Market location in 1980.
- Beecher’s Handmade Cheese, 1600 Pike Pl, Seattle, WA 98101. Watch cheesemakers at work in the 1,000 square foot glass-walled kitchen to see how cheese is made, including Beecher’s award-winning Flagship cheddar-style cheese. It’s also a great store to grab a sandwich or snack, some cheese to take home, or cheese-related accoutrement or gifts.
- Craft Market. In the north arcade, you find one of the largest craft markets in the country, featuring handcrafted goods. Don’t miss the new public plaza; even on dreary days it offers stunning views of Puget Sound and (clouds permitting) the Olympic Mountains. Don’t miss the open-air Pavilion, stunning public art along the staircase, and artisanal food and drinks downstairs in the Producers Hall.
- Seattle Cutlery, 1920 Pike Place Market, Seattle WA 98101. They sell a wide variety of cutting tools: culinary, outdoor, and pocket knives, plus kitchen gadgets. They can instruct you how to properly care for your knives and offer the best knife sharpening in Seattle.
- Bavarian Meat Products, 1920 Pike Place, Seattle WA 98101. For over 45 years, Bavarian Meats has been hand crafting Sausages, Wieners, Cold Cuts and Smoked Meats using Old World preparations. It’s a great place to buy deli items or grab a bite to eat or chat with the friendly staff.
About Pike Place Market
World-famous Pike Place Market is one of the oldest continuously operating public markets in the U.S. It is often called the “Soul of Seattle.” The nine-acre Market Historic District overlooking Elliott Bay is a bustling center of farm fresh, locally sourced, artisanal and specialty foods.
The neighborhood within the historic district is home to more than 350 residents, many of whom are low-income seniors. Walk down the cobblestone street of Pike Place and take a moment to look up. The windows and balconies above the street belong to apartments that are homes to residents who live above the storefronts.
Also in the Market are social services that serve the Pike Place Market and greater downtown Seattle community including the Pike Market Senior Center and Food Bank, Pike Market Childcare and Preschool, and Pike Market Clinic. These services are supported by the Pike Place Market Foundation and her mascot, Rachel the Piggy Bank, a life-size bronze piggybank located under the Market clock at the corner of Pike Street and Pike Place.