The fourth day of our road trip was dedicated to downtown Seattle. After finishing breakfast at the hotel, we jumped into the car and drove to Seattle Center, home of the Space Needle, which is perhaps Seattle’s most iconic landmark.
We found parking and coffee and made the short walk to the tall, pointy tower, which we discovered is currently being remodeled. A glass floor is being added to the bottom. Thankfully the Space Needle’s observation deck was still open during construction and the elevator operational. We purchased tickets and had an hour to kill before our scheduled time.
Seattle Center, as it turns out, is home to a lot more than just the Space Needle. There are museums, restaurants, a monorail, a fountain and a park. This was the site of the 1962 World’s Fair, and Seattle has made it a destination. One could spend an entire day at Seattle Center and perhaps not see and do everything. It felt like this was the Pacific Northwest’s version of Disneyland’s Tomorrowland, just without the roller coaster and with some homeless loitering.
We didn’t visit any of the museums, although if I had planned the trip better I would have. Instead we walked around for awhile, just taking it all in. We found a guy making huge bubbles, and the kids (ours and stranger’s) were going nuts for this. Soon it was time to take the elevator to the top, and see Seattle from Space… er, I mean, see Seattle from the Space Needle’s observation deck.
Even though I lived a few different places in the Seattle area as a kid, I never once went to the Seattle Center. I had never been inside the Space Needle. I’m not sure why, but my parents never took me there. It was a first-time experience for me as well as my wife and kids.
My three-year-old son would later say that riding the Space Needle’s elevator was his favorite part of the trip. It was a quick and smooth trip up, and soon we were overlooking the Puget Sound area, with spectacular views of the ocean, islands, skyscrapers and even Mt. Rainier. It turned out to be a lovely day to take in the views, with partly sunny skies and tolerable temperatures.
Inside the Space Needle they had some virtual reality goggles set up where you can experience (sort of) skydiving off of the tall building. My two older kids enjoyed this, it was an extra treat for them, the icing on the cake, to this memorable experience.
The Space Needle was a highlight of our trip, and my kids talked about it for days after returning home. It’s an iconic site that’s a must-see for anyone visiting the city. It should come as no surprise that it’s a great place for capturing photographs. Some of my favorite pictures from the trip were photographed here.
I used a Fujifilm X100F to capture these images. I started out with my wide-angle conversion lens attached, then, while at the top of the Space Needle, took it off for a few exposures. These are camera-made JPEGs using my Velvia Film Simulation recipe and my Acros Push Process Film Simulation recipe.