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Hiram M. Chittenden Locks, Seattle

4.7
#1 of 6 in Nature in Seattle
Pier / Boardwalk · Hidden Gem · Water Body
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Watch boats and fish travel the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks, a waterway system that provides safe passage between salt water and fresh water. The locks connect the Puget Sound to the Ship Canal, which links to Lake Union and Lake Washington. See barges, yachts, sailboats, and more pass through as water levels adjust to allow their journey. Don’t miss the fish ladder, which allows the migration of anadromous fish, such as salmon, between the two types of water. Glass panels give you a clear view of the fish making their journey. Pop into the visitor center to learn more about the history of the locks and how they work. To visit Hiram M. Chittenden Locks on your holiday in Seattle, and find out what else Seattle has to offer, use our Seattle.
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Hiram M. Chittenden Locks reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating
TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
3,236 reviews
Google
4.7
TripAdvisor
  • We just missed fish journey but got to see the locks in action. Went by private tour rather than by boat or public tour. 
    We just missed fish journey but got to see the locks in action. Went by private tour rather than by boat or public tour.  more »
  • Nice to spend some time here. It was interesting to watch the mechanism that raises or lowers boats. There is also a very cool salmon ladder, which is like a bridge to help the salmon cross. There... 
    Nice to spend some time here. It was interesting to watch the mechanism that raises or lowers boats. There is also a very cool salmon ladder, which is like a bridge to help the salmon cross. There...  more »
Google
  • I thoroughly enjoyed my visit! Parked a bit away and enjoyed a walk along the canal. It's undermaintained but still enjoyable. The water is green but considerably clearer than some rivers I've seen. You can see through the edge of the water a few feet down. Close to the locks you can see salmon surging against the current and seals/sea lions dipping in the water. If you go into the observatory below the locks you can view the salmon and there's more information about their spawning habits. There was even an interpreter giving a talk about the locks. There were boats lining up to pass through and walking across the canal bridge was interesting. A great free educational environmentally minded attraction. There's also a sculpture, garden, and other facilities I didn't visit. If you take it slowly with little ones you could possibly spend a few hours or make a day of it, watching the boats, reading all the info boards, and seeing the animals.
  • A definite must check it out for anyone who hasn't seen an active working Locks. Very interesting, you get to see how the system works that lets boats of all sizes go through. You see all kinds of very interesting boats. We also saw some sea lions hunting for fish. There's also a beautiful botanical garden there with walking paths and a great variety of plants and trees. Perfect place for a picnic in a warm day. Plant lovers would enjoy this garden. There's also a fish ladder to watch the salmon go through although we didn't see any on our visit. Must not be the season. You can Google when the fish swim through to see, it'd make it a much more interesting experience.

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