Lake Washington Tours

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More than just the second-largest lake in all of Washington State, Lake Washington defines Seattle as a city intimately tied to the water. Residents and visitors alike come to Lake Washington to connect with the natural beauty of the landscape, which includes views of Mt. Rainier and the Cascade Mountains.
 
The Basics
Bordered by the towns of Kirkland and Bellevue, Lake Washington is home to Mercer Island. The Lake Washington Ship Canal connects the lake to the Puget Sound. Plenty of shoreline lets visitors take in the lake’s inherent natural beauty through activities such as swimming, picnicking, and hunting for clams and crawfish. Other attractions include the Kurt Cobain bench, a cultural memorial that pays homage both to the Nirvana legend and to downtown Seattle’s vibrant music scene.

Sightseeing tours here often include a Lake Washington cruise (many with live narration from a captain or naturalist guide), views of some of the lake’s opulent waterfront homes, and a visit to the floating bridge. Some tours combine stops at Seattle’s other major water features—Lake Union and the Puget Sound—via boat, ground transportation, or even seaplane. Another option is a dinner harbor cruise, which allows you to enjoy the sunset over the water after spending the day enjoying other activities. The University of Washington operates a boat rental facility in Union Bay, where you can rent a boat and explore under your own steam in a rowboat or canoe.
 
Things to Know Before You Go
  • Outdoor enthusiasts, Seattle sightseers, and city slickers looking for an urban escape will love a day at Lake Washington.
  • Expect summer crowds at the most popular beaches, Madison Park Beach and Denny Blaine Park.
  • Seward Park, at the south end of Lake Washington, is the nexus for the lake’s perimeter path, perfect for pedestrians and bicyclists.
 
How to Get There
As Lake Washington defines Seattle’s eastern boundary, it’s hard to miss. There are several access points along the shore, including the Atlantic City Boat Ramp, Seward Park, Stan Sayres Memorial Park, and Warren G. Magnuson Park.
 
When to Get There
Seattle's rainy reputation is well earned, but the summer months tend to be drier and suitable for beach days or forays on the water. Most sightseeing cruises have covered interior cabins and operate rain or shine.
 
Floating Bridges
A drive over one of the world’s longest floating bridges—the Lacey V. Murrow Memorial Bridge, the Evergreen Point Floating Bridge, and the Homer M. Hadley Memorial Bridge—is totally worth a brief detour from downtown Seattle. The three floating bridges on Lake Washington connect Seattle, Mercer Island, and Bellevue. Constructed on floating concrete pylons, these engineering marvels came about by necessity, as the bottom of Lake Washington is soft, muddy, silt, which is unsuitable for anchoring a traditional suspension bridge.
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13 Tours & Activities to Experience

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Lake Union Cruise from Seattle

From picturesque houseboat districts to luxury waterfront homes and the Husky Stadium, former home to the NFL's Seahawks - this two-hour cruise is an unforgettable way to experience the best of Seattle. See dramatic scenery and the volcanic Mt. Rainier as the tour cruises Lake Washington. You have your choice of the standard cruise or an adults-only wine cruise.
  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
From
US$36.88
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  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
From
US$36.88

Lake Washington Cruise from Kirkland

Enjoy the sights and sounds of Seattle from Lake Washington on this 1.5-hour narrated cruise. Learn about Seattle’s historic waterfront and take in the view of the city’s skyline with a spectacular panoramic background of the Cascade and Olympic mountain ranges, including majestic Mt Rainier. See the houseboat and waterfront homes of the area’s rich and famous. Food and beverages are available for purchase on board the ship.
  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
From
US$36.88
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  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
From
US$36.88

Snoqualmie Falls and Seattle Winery Tour

Escape to the beauty of Snoqualmie Falls, one of Washington’s most popular scenic attractions, on this winery tour from Seattle. Visit an independent, family-run winery as well as the beloved, world-class Chateau Ste. Michelle, one of Washington’s oldest and most acclaimed wineries. The tour travels over Lake Washington on Seattle’s famous floating Evergreen Point Bridge to Woodinville, home to many of Washington’s wineries. With wine tasting available and beautiful scenery, it’s a relaxing day away from the hustle of the city.
  • Duration: 6 hours
From
US$97.99
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  • Duration: 6 hours
From
US$97.99

Seattle Locks Cruise

Enjoy the sights and sounds of Seattle from the water on this 2.5-hour narrated cruise along Ballard Locks, one of the the city’s most popular tourist attractions. Learn about Seattle’s historic waterfront and take in the view of the city’s skyline with a spectacular panoramic background of the Cascade and Olympic mountain ranges, including majestic Mt Rainier. See the houseboat and waterfront homes of the area’s rich and famous. Food and beverages are available for purchase on board the boat.
  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
From
US$46.79
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  • Duration: 2 hours 30 minutes
From
US$46.79

Leavenworth Christmas Tour from Seattle with Optional Sleigh Ride

Escape to the quaint Bavarian village of Leavenworth, nestled deep in the snowy Cascade Mountains, for this annual Christmas Lighting Festival on an all-day tour from Seattle. This fun-filled event is overflowing with holiday cheer — like carolers strolling through the village, the scent of roasted chestnuts in the air, sledding at Front Street Park and so much more. The highlight is watching a half million Christmas lights come to life during a special ceremony at dusk.
  • Duration: 12 to 13 hrs
From
US$83.00
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  • Duration: 12 to 13 hrs
From
US$83.00

Seattle in One Day: Sightseeing Tour including Space Needle and Pike Place Market

See the best of Seattle on this 6-hour sightseeing tour. Sit back and relax in a spacious coach as a knowledgeable guide presents Seattle’s neighborhoods and attractions. See the iconic Space Needle (admission included) with stellar views of the Olympic and Cascade mountain ranges, including majestic Mt Rainier. There’s Pike Place Market and the Elliott Bay waterfront, plus Pioneer Square. The list goes on. This tour includes convenient hotel pickup and drop-off.
  • Duration: 6 hours
From
US$148.00
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  • Duration: 6 hours
From
US$148.00

Seattle's Favorite Sightseeing and Cocktail Cruise

Enjoy the sights and sounds of Seattle from the water on this comfortable, 2-hour, cocktail cruise along Lake Union. Watch seaplane arrivals and departures and see landmark Seattle locations like the iconic Space Needle, Seattle Great Wheel, the Fremont Bridge, Gas Works Park, the University of Washington and much more — plus a plethora of floating homes, including the one from the popular movie ‘Sleepless in Seattle.’ Choose from a morning, midday, afternoon or evening cruise. The first round of drinks is included.
  • Duration: 2 hours
From
US$75.00
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  • Duration: 2 hours
From
US$75.00

Seattle Highlights Sightseeing Tour

Check out Seattle’s latest attractions and hip culture on this 1.5-hour, guided sightseeing tour around the city. Drive by must-see sites like popular Pike Place Market, historic Pioneer Square and the iconic Space Needle. See Kurt Cobain’s former home as well as a certain floating house from the movie 'Sleepless in Seattle.' With lively narration and some of Seattle’s best music playing, this is sure to be a tour that is both educational and entertaining. Transportation by minibus. Hotel pickup is included for customers staying at downtown Seattle hotels, South Lake Union area hotels, or university area hotels.
  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
From
US$42.00
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  • Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes
From
US$42.00

Scenic, Greater Seattle Airplane Tour

Explore the Cascade and Olympic mountain ranges, plus the city of Seattle and Puget Sound, on an exhilarating seaplane adventure in the Pacific Northwest. This narrated, small-group, hybrid air-water Seattle seaplane tour includes stunning bird’s-eye views of the Emerald City’s skyline, featuring the iconic Space Needle, the Seattle Great Wheel Ferris wheel and much more. Also, see Lake Washington, the University of Washington, plus the Cascade and Olympic mountain ranges along with majestic Mt. Rainier, the highest peak in the range.
  • Duration: Flexible
From
US$93.59
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  • Duration: Flexible
From
US$93.59

Pre-Cruise Tour: Transportation & Seattle City Tour

Waiting to take off on a cruise? Get to know the beautiful city of Seattle on a guided, 3-hour, small-group sightseeing tour around town. Hop in a mini-coach and enjoy a relaxing ride to the city’s most popular attractions, like the iconic Space Needle, Pike Place Market and many more, including a great view of Mt Rainier. Hotel pickup and port drop-off are included. Luggage will be safely stowed during the tour, and a timely return to the cruise port is guaranteed.
  • Duration: 3 hours
From
US$89.00
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  • Duration: 3 hours
From
US$89.00

Private Tour: Snoqualmie Falls and Woodinville Wineries Day Trip from Seattle

Go wine tasting just outside Seattle at two of Woodinville’s award-winning wineries on this private full-day tour. You’ll travel to this top wine-producing region in the comfort of a private vehicle, stopping at Chateau Ste Michelle Winery and Snoqualmie Falls at the foothills of the Cascades. Bite into boutique chocolate in Issaquah before returning to Seattle via the Evergreen Pt Bridge across Lake Washington.
  • Duration: 6 hours
From
US$160.00
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  • Duration: 6 hours
From
US$160.00

Seattle's Favorite Sightseeing and Cocktail Cruise - Private

Cruise Lake Union to see Seattle's best sights from the water while sipping your favorite cocktail on this private cruise. Enjoy personalized attention from the staff and captain for your private group as you make your way past famous sights such as the Fremont Bridge, the Space Needle, and St. Mark's Cathedral. Bring a picnic or food from a favorite restaurant to munch on while you travel. This family-friendly cruise welcomes all ages.
  • Duration: 2 hours
From
US$300.00
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  • Duration: 2 hours
From
US$300.00

Private Group Lake Front Mansion Cruise

Revel in personalized attention and enjoy a flexible itinerary on this private Lake Union cruise. Sip a cocktail or soft drink while your guide points out the luxe waterfront mansions that line the shore. Other sights include the floating homes of all varieties, views of seaplanes taking off and landing, and an array of drawbridges, some almost 100 years old. This private tour can accommodate up to 6 passengers.
  • Duration: 4 hours
From
US$520.00
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  • Duration: 4 hours
From
US$520.00


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