Pioneer Square: Lumberjacks, Gold Diggers, Gamblers, Hipsters and the Story of Seattle

Seattle, WA

  • Businesses in Pioneer Square outfitted thousands of stampeders en route to Yukon. Photo: Seattle Times Archives.
  • The totem pole in Pioneer Square.
  • The only known picture of Chief Seattle.  Copyright Museum of History and Industry, Seattle.
  • Exterior of The Central Saloon.
  • The streets of early Seattle.
  • Carving of Tsonqua, a mythical figure that is both a bringer of wealth and a child-eating ogre.
  • Carving of a bear ready to pounce.
  • The flower shop at the London Plane.
  • Baked goods at The London Plane.
  • Look for the National Park Service signs for the entrance.
  • Advertisement from Gold Rush days.
  • A Cortado at Elm Coffee Roasters.
  • Baristas at work at Elm.
  • The Smith Tower stands above Pioneer Square.
  • Uptown views of the Space Needle, Ferris Wheel and city skyline.
  • The Sinking Ship Parking Lot.
  • Hotel Seattle photographed in 1900.  Photo: Seattle Times.

2 hours and 15 minutes
0.7 mi
Guided by Amanda

Pioneer Square was the center of the city when Seattle was founded in 1852. Join us to explore the settling, scorching, reconstruction, decay and resurgence of the neighborhood. We chronologically unfold the story as we visit a skyscraper, national park, former brothel, cafe and other sites that explain the evolution of the district from 19th-century frontier outpost to today's nucleus of art galleries, tech startups and Seattle's farm-to-table culinary movement.

About Your Guide
Seattle has been home for the better part of a decade, and every year I find new things to do and see. Beyond the overcast skies and constant monsoon is a metropolis filled with with monumental art, artisanal espresso, gold rush dreams and rock 'n' roll bonafides.

Get Sidewalk

Guide Points
  1. Pioneer Square
  2. Central Saloon
  3. Occidental Square
  4. The London Plane
  5. Klondike Gold Rush National Historical Park
  6. Elm Coffee Roasters
  7. Smith Tower
  8. Sinking Ship Parking Lot

About Sidewalk
Sidewalk is an app that provides free, guided walk experiences that can be created by anyone with stories to share about places they know and love.

The app navigates people through a neighborhood walk using GPS turn-by-turn directions, rich imagery and storytelling.