Capitol Hill is a neighborhood located just east of downtown Seattle, Washington, and is known for its vibrant arts and music scene, bustling nightlife, and diverse community. The area has a rich history dating back to the late 1800s, and its name comes from its location on a hill overlooking the Washington State Capitol building in Olympia, which is over 60 miles to the south.
In the early 1900s, Capitol Hill became a popular residential area for Seattle's growing middle and upper class. Many of the homes built during this time are still standing today and have been designated as historic landmarks. During the 1920s and 1930s, the neighborhood became a hub for Seattle's LGBTQ+ community, and many of the area's bars and clubs became gathering places for the community.
Capitol Hill also has a long history of activism and political engagement. In the 1960s and 1970s, the neighborhood was a center for anti-war protests and civil rights activism, and in the 1980s and 1990s, it was a stronghold for the city's grunge music scene. The neighborhood has also been a hub for progressive politics, and many Seattle politicians have come from Capitol Hill.
Today, Capitol Hill remains one of Seattle's most vibrant and diverse neighborhoods. It is home to a wide range of businesses, from independent bookstores and cafes to high-end boutiques and restaurants. The area is also known for its numerous parks and green spaces, including Volunteer Park and Cal Anderson Park, which are popular gathering places for locals and tourists alike.
Top Tourist Attractions
- Volunteer Park: This 48-acre park is located in the heart of Capitol Hill and is home to the Volunteer Park Conservatory, a beautiful Victorian greenhouse that houses a collection of exotic plants from around the world. The park also features a water tower with an observation deck offering stunning views of the city, a sculpture garden, and walking trails.
- Seattle Asian Art Museum: Located within Volunteer Park, the Seattle Asian Art Museum features a collection of over 13,000 artworks from countries throughout Asia, including China, Japan, Korea, and India. The museum is housed in a historic art deco building that has recently undergone a major renovation.
- Elliott Bay Book Company: This independent bookstore has been a staple of the Capitol Hill community for over 40 years. The store features a wide selection of books, as well as author readings and other events.
- Cal Anderson Park: This 11-acre park is located in the heart of Capitol Hill and features a large open field, a reflecting pool, a fountain, and a skate park. The park is also home to a farmers market and hosts various community events throughout the year.
- Broadway: Capitol Hill's main commercial street, Broadway, is lined with a variety of shops, restaurants, and cafes. It's a great place to stroll and people-watch, and there's always something new and interesting to discover.
Capitol Hill, like the rest of Seattle, has a temperate oceanic climate characterized by mild, wet winters and cool, dry summers. The neighborhood experiences relatively consistent temperatures throughout the year, with average highs ranging from the mid-40s to mid-70s Fahrenheit (7-24 Celsius) depending on the season.
Winter in Capitol Hill is typically cool and wet, with temperatures averaging in the mid-40s Fahrenheit (7 Celsius) and frequent rain. Snow is rare but can occur on occasion. Spring and fall are mild and pleasant, with temperatures ranging from the mid-50s to mid-60s Fahrenheit (12-18 Celsius) and occasional rain.
Summer in Capitol Hill is typically dry and cool, with temperatures averaging in the mid-70s Fahrenheit (24 Celsius) and low humidity. However, it's worth noting that the Pacific Northwest is known for its occasional heat waves, which can bring temperatures into the 80s or even 90s Fahrenheit (27-32 Celsius) for a few days at a time.
Overall, the climate in Capitol Hill is relatively mild and pleasant throughout the year, although visitors should be prepared for rain at any time of year and should pack accordingly.
Capitol Hill is a densely populated neighborhood located on a hill just east of downtown Seattle. It is bounded by Interstate 5 to the east, Lake Washington Boulevard and 15th Avenue to the east, E Madison Street to the south, and E Roy Street to the north.
The neighborhood's topography is characterized by its steep hills and varied elevations. The highest point in Capitol Hill is 444 feet (135 meters) above sea level, which provides stunning views of the city and the surrounding mountains. The steep hills and narrow streets can make walking or driving challenging at times, but they also give the neighborhood a unique character and charm.
Capitol Hill is also home to several parks and green spaces, including Volunteer Park, which covers 48 acres and includes walking trails, a water tower with an observation deck, a conservatory, and a sculpture garden. Cal Anderson Park, located in the heart of the neighborhood, covers 11 acres and includes a large open field, a reflecting pool, and a skate park.
In addition to its hills and parks, Capitol Hill is known for its vibrant and diverse community, with a mix of historic homes, apartments, and commercial buildings. The neighborhood is also home to several major thoroughfares, including Broadway and Pike and Pine streets, which are lined with shops, restaurants, and cafes.