Explore Seattle

Stuck in SEA-TAC During the Holidays? Enjoy It!

Travel Tips — By Michelle Schusterman on November 4, 2010 at 3:53 am

So you’re heading up to Vancouver for Christmas, or maybe have plans to celebrate New Year’s Eve in Tokyo. But for now, you’re stuck in Seattle. Don’t despair! Seattle’s a cool holiday destination too – even if you only have six hours to enjoy it.

In the Airport

  • Bored? Grab a book at Borders in the central terminal.
  • Life is Good, also in the central terminal, offers “optimistic apparel with positive messages.”
  • Pick up some portable entertainment at InMotion at the entrance to Concourse C – movies, games, electronics and more.
  • Take advantage of the duty free options at the World Passages located at Gate N9 and across from the escalators in the international South Satellite concourse.
  • Grab some Seattle memorabilia at Discover Puget Sound in the central terminal.
  • Ever heard of Starbucks? Little coffee franchise that got its start in Seattle. There’s one in pretty much every concourse – two in Concourse B (kind of like in real life).
  • Or try the argumentatively named “Seattle’s Best Coffee” – in Concourse D, or South Satellite for international flights.
  • Aren’t you in the Pacific Northwest? That means chowder, baby. Pick up a bowl (and maybe some fish and chips) from the famous Ivar’s Seafood Bar in the central terminal.
  • Ready to kill a few hours with a gourmet meal? Anthony’s in the central terminal is the place for your oyster, salmon, and Northwest wine or microbrew fix.
  • Wi-fi. Free. Throughout the entire airport. Go on, feed your Facebook addiction.
  • Get pampered in Concourse C – a manicure and pedicure at Butter London or a double-shot massage at the Massage Bar will have you ready for your flight.

Near the Airport

Frustrated about your late flight? Why not learn about the history of flight delays? The Museum of Flight is a mere six miles down the highway – the kids can get some hands-on fun time in the aviation learning center, and sitting in the cockpit of a SR-71A Blackbird might make your coach seat seem roomy by comparison. And hey, if you’re really itching to get in the air, the museum’s flight simulator can help you pretend you’re right on-schedule.

If you’re looking at a half-day or more in SEA-TAC – and you like to walk on the wild side a bit – hop on the Light Rail. $2.50 will have you in downtown Seattle in just over half an hour. Check out Pike Place, snap a pic of the Space Needle, grab a coffee in Pioneer Square, then hop back on the rail and you’re back at the airport. Five bucks per person to get downtown and makes for a pretty entertaining layover.

[Images courtesy of Seth Russell, rudolf_schuba, and clairity]

Tags: airport, layovers, sea-tac, seatac, seattle, travel

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