To see the city from about 1,500 feet, try one of Seattle Seaplanes’ (206/329-9638 or 800/637-5553, www.seattleseaplanes.com, $58 pp, two-person minimum) 20-minute scenic floatplane rides over Seattle. Longer flights are available to Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Rainier, or the San Juan Islands. Flights take off and land at Lake Union.
In business since 1946, Kenmore Air (206/486-1257 or 800/543-9595, www.kenmoreair.com) flies year-round scheduled floatplane flights from Lake Union or the north shore of Lake Washington. Destinations include the San Juan Islands ($159–183 round-trip), Gulf Islands ($220), Victoria ($162–192), and onward to several Vancouver Island destinations. A 24-pound baggage weight limit is in effect for these flights, with excess baggage charged at $1 per pound. In addition, Kenmore offers more standard flightseeing trips over Seattle at $198 for up to three people on a quick 20-minute flight.
The most distinctive way to see Seattle is aboard a classic biplane from Olde Thyme Aviation (206/730-1412, www.oldethymeaviation.com). Flights start at $135 for two people on a 20-minute trip. They operate from the Museum of Flight at Boeing Field throughout the spring and summer, and passengers suit up in old-fashioned barnstorming regalia.
© Ericka Chickowski from Moon Washington, 8th edition