With loads of sights to see and a reputation for having some of the best public transportation systems in the U.S., Seattle is one place you don’t have to worry about navigation going wrong. Nonetheless, here are some tips for getting around the Emerald City:
From the airport (Seattle-Tacoma), you can take the Link Light Rail to downtown Seattle for under $3 (exact fare depends on where you get off), which is way less than you’d pay in other big cities, where airport transit prices are almost scandalous. It takes about a half an hour to get from the airport to the city center.
Unfortunately the ‘ride free’ area recently turned to pay-on-entry, but it’s still very cheap and easy to travel by Metro. Note that you must pay with exact change, and don’t forget to exit out the back way when you leave. Off-peak price (non-commute time) is $2.25 for adults, and peak price is $2.50 or $3, depending on which zone you’re in. If you get disoriented while walking around, remember that Seattle Avenues run north-south and Streets run east-west.
The Seattle Center Monorail is an elevated train that runs every 10 minutes ($2.25 one-way), and this is what you’ll want to take if you’re visiting, obviously, Seattle Center. It was the nation’s very first full-scale commercial monorail system.
Don’t count out taking a ferry, even if you just go for the view. Washington State Ferries are reliable, and many of the places they run, such as Bainbridge Island, can be a wonderful getaway from the city. You can take a look at where they sail on the route map from the Washington State Department of Transportation.
It’s best not to rent a car if you’re planning on spending a lot of your time downtown; parking is extremely expensive and often difficult to find. Remember that Seattle is built on a series of hills!