Eric and I had a limited amount of money due to banking issues we had with HSBC USA so we had to do something cheap for our first wedding anniversary so I booked the Market Experience tour offered by Free Seattle Walking tour. So glad I did because it was great! Can’t go wrong with free samples and know where all the good places to eat!
They run 2 free tours Market Experience (9.30am) and Seattle 101 (11am) daily which is fantastic! I only did the Market Experience but plan to do the other one when I have time.
- Comfortable clothes
We start the day nice and early to avoid the crowd. It’s pretty cold in January about 8-10 degrees Celsius. I can’t really stand the cold so I recommend a good jacket because the walk doesn’t really warm you up. It’s a slow pace walk but lots to see and eat so don’t eat too much!
The meeting spot is from the North Entrance of Pike Place Market. From there you can see’s Seattle’s Great Wheel. It’s best to go when the day is clear 🙂
The Pike Market Place was started by farmers around 1907 who wanted no middle man and to sell directly to the people themselves. That way they could keep more of the profit.
This is the world’s oldest (and I think first) Starbucks coffee shop! Seattle surprises me everyday at how many successful companies started in Seattle.
The original Starbucks logo is of a Siren. The Starbucks logo we see now is a little more decent 🙂
Sellers need to sign up every morning before setting up their stores in the market. Soon this place will be bustling!
A long time ago, the Pike Market Place was due to be destroyed but the communities knew the historic significants of this fisherman market that they donated a lot of money to save it. All the names you see on the floor are of contributors. If you look, you will find many famous names such as Bill Gates and Barack Obama.
At this fish market, we got to try our first sample – smoked salmon! It was probably the best tasting smoked salmon I’ve ever had. It had a nice rich smokey flavour, not salty and the fish was really nicely cooked. It was soft yet firm.
If you save your salmon, right next door we tried Mick’s Pepper Jelly. I put some on my salmon and it was yummy! There are plenty of flavour to try! From sweet to really spicy! ^_^
The market sells pretty much anything you expect from a market. There are plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables (organic or not), fresh pasta and arts and crafts!
Our third samples are some fruits.
This is Athanian Restaurant and Bar where they shot Sleepless In Seattle starring Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan. Eric and I had brunch there after the tour 🙂 Worth seating by the window where you get to see the Great Wheel view and the Elliot Bay.
Mexican art shop. Pretty cool!
Along Post Alley there are a lot of restaurants.
When you think of Pike Place Market you pretty much think of the picture below 🙂 It’s a nice sign! Very attractive.
Rachel the pig is the unofficial mascot for the market. It is actually a very big piggy bank for donations to keep the market running! You can also find her footprints all over the market 😀
Sorry for the terrible picture, but this is the World Famous Pike Place Fish Market. Sometimes they throw massive fishes to the crowd to see if you can catch up. No thank you! But it’s fun to watch 🙂
Opposite is “Simply The Best Dried & Fresh Produce” where we go to try many many samples! They were awesome! I should’ve bought a bag.. you get discount if you mention you were on this tour.
I didn’t expect to see this on the tour but our tour guide said it is most requested so we got to see the infamous gum wall! It’s pretty smelly. I can’t imagine what it’s like in Summer! Sometimes famous people pay people pay someone to put their names up there with gum and some even used the wall to propose! Ewwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!
At the end of the tour, we get a chance to ask any questions and give donation to the tour (if you want).