Discover the Perfect Season to Embark on a Seattle Adventure: Unveiling the Ideal Time to Explore the Emerald City's Weather, Outdoor Escapades, Festivals, Serenity, and

2023-09-29 00:04:34 - Drany Macley Drany Macley, the senior editor of, brings extensive journalism background and over eight years of experience in travel writing and editing to the site, offering practical insights and first-hand knowledge through articles on innovative hotels, backed by a BA in Journalism from Ithaca College.

Are you ready to uncover the secret of when to find the best weather, outdoor adventures, events, lower crowds, and affordable prices in Seattle? Look no further, because in this article we will guide you through the best time to travel to Seattle, revealing the hidden gems that will make your trip absolutely remarkable. Whether you're a nature enthusiast, a festival lover, or simply searching for a great deal, we've got you covered. Get ready to immerse yourself in the magic of Seattle, as we unveil the ultimate guide to the city's best times to visit.

When to Find the Best Weather in Seattle

Most people don't travel to Seattle in search of sunny and warm weather, but if you plan your trip carefully, you may get lucky.

July and August are the warmest and driest months of the year. The daily high temperatures usually reach the mid-70s, and it only rains about five days per month. However, during the wet season from November to January, it can rain up to 18 days per month. This doesn't mean that the winter weather in Seattle is terrible, especially if you're planning to go to the mountains for skiing or snowboarding where you can find deep snow.


Seattle's International Film Festival, which lasts almost a month, showcases over 400 films from around the world and attracts nearly 200,000 people every year. The festival typically starts in May and continues into June, providing guests with the opportunity to watch a wide variety of independent short films, features, and documentaries. About 70% of these films won't be shown in theaters, so it's a unique chance to see them. Additionally, the festival also includes films by established cinematographers and producers.


Bumbershoot, one of Seattle's most popular music and arts festivals, takes place every year over the Labor Day Weekend. Since 1971, this renowned festival has been presenting comedians, musicians, dancers, and other artists. The festival's name pays tribute to Seattle's famous weather, as a "bumbershoot" is an umbrella. Along with the incredible performances, you can also enjoy a variety of food vendors, morning yoga sessions, and even an electronic dance experience.

Best Time to Visit Seattle for Outdoor Adventure

With Mount Rainier, the Cascade Range, and Olympic National Park just a few hours away from the city, Seattle is often the starting point for those seeking outdoor activities like hiking, climbing, biking, fishing, and skiing.

July, August, and September offer the best weather conditions for outdoor recreation. However, many high-elevation roads, including Sunrise Road in Mount Rainier National Park, are often closed from late September through June.

During winter, the rain in Seattle usually turns into snow in the mountains, which is perfect if you love skiing on fresh powder. The best time to visit Seattle for snow sports is from December to April, with prime conditions between January and March.

Best Time to Visit Seattle for Events and Festivals

From food festivals to film festivals, Seattle always has something worth exploring. While summer brings numerous outdoor events, there is also plenty to do in spring, winter, and fall.

Best Times to Visit Seattle for Smaller Crowds

Although the seasons in Seattle are generally mild, it does get cold during winter, with some snow in January and February. This means that there are fewer crowds during this time, making it a cozy season to enjoy indoor activities. In a rainy city like Seattle, the gray skies present the perfect opportunity to savor a warm beverage, explore museums, watch shows, or indulge in a wine tasting by the fire, as suggested by Cory O'Born, a representative of Visit Seattle.

Mikala Troupe, a lotte Seattle reservations manager and lifelong Washingtonian, adds that locals embrace the rainier months because they know how to dress for the weather. They believe that there's no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothes. For winter visitors, Troupe recommends bringing a good pair of rubber boots. She personally enjoys staying warm at Café Darte in Pioneer Square, sipping a local marbled cold brew, and people-watching. Then she suggests taking a walk through Occidental Square to admire the winter tree lights.

Best Times to Visit Seattle for Lower Prices

Generally, the best time to visit Seattle on a budget is during the low season. However, Bevis mentions that good deals on air travel and accommodation are available throughout the year if you plan in advance.

February is Seattle Museum Month, where guests staying at selected downtown hotels receive a 50% discount on tickets to the city's many museums. O'Born highlights that it's an excellent deal for families, couples, or travel buddies to take advantage of.

Affordable Airfare

According to the travel search engine, the cheapest time to buy tickets to Seattle depends on your departure location. From New York, the average price in November is around $211. Traveling from DC is also cheapest in November, with similar prices. If you're flying from Los Angeles or Atlanta, it's best to travel in June, with average costs of approximately $158 and $247, respectively. October is the optimal month to travel from Chicago, with prices averaging around $154. While you're at the airport, don't forget to visit the renovated Seattle Centurion Lounge, which opened for business in 2017.

Affordable Hotels

Based on historical data from, the average daily rate for hotels rated 2.5 stars and above is about $172. Expectedly, prices start to rise in May as the weather improves and peak between June and August, which is Seattle's high season. In 2018, the average price per night reached its highest point at around $222. However, prices begin to decrease in September and reach a low point between November and December, with an average nightly rate of approximately $135. Before and after renovation reviews of the W Seattle are also available.

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In conclusion, Seattle offers a wide range of opportunities for visitors throughout the year. Whether you're seeking the best weather, outdoor adventure, events and festivals, smaller crowds, or lower prices, there is a perfect time to visit this vibrant city. Spring and summer bring pleasant temperatures and blooming scenery, making it an ideal time for outdoor enthusiasts. The city also hosts a myriad of events and festivals during these seasons, promising a memorable experience. For those seeking a quieter visit, consider visiting during the shoulder seasons to avoid large crowds. Additionally, traveling during the off-peak times can lead to more affordable airfare and hotel options. So, pack your bags and get ready to explore Seattle, as there is always a perfect time to discover the Emerald City.

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