Seattle’s Historic Neighborhoods: The Chinatown/International District

Seattle’s Historic Neighborhoods: The Chinatown/International District

The International District is a neighborhood in Downtown Seattle made up by Japantown, Little Saigon and Chinatown. Quickly accessible from I5 and I90, the CID is a great resource for Asian American food, merchandise, history and atmosphere.

The neighborhood offers a variety of experiences, from weekday lunches, to evening browsing, to weekend nightlife and festivities. A walk through is marked by the many grocers, kitchens, cafes, tea shops, beauty salons and jewelers. Consider visiting:

Beijing Arts

Antiques, art and furniture.

Kinokuniya Bookstore

A large selection of Japanese, Chinese and English books and magazines.

Uwajimaya Village

A large grocery market and food court right next to King Street Station and the light rail platform. Close by are many Asian kitchens and small shops that offer tea and/or a quick bite.

The Wing Luke Museum

Your best resource for Seattle Asian American history.

A tour can be purchased that offers exclusive access to historical features outside in the neighborhood.

Check the calendar for this one. Tickets are needed to get in.

The Panama Hotel

Lodging, dining, and tea can be had here.

A historical landmark built in 1910, since declared a National Treasure.

As historical exhibits, they have old Japanese bathhouses and some of the still unclaimed belongings left behind by Japanese families that were interned during WWII.

The Pinball Museum

A simple collection of classic pinball games, founded in 2010. Closed on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

Admission is $18 for adults, $15 for kids.

North American Post

A newspaper founded in 1902, covering the local Japanese community.

Plan Your Visit

The International District is always a great to place to stop in for a meal or Asian groceries, but when you have more time on your hands, there’s much more to enjoy. Certain dates/weekends offer festivities, market and other events, shown on the calendar on the CID’s Google listing.


There are plenty of pay lots and garages in and around the neighborhood with standard prices. You might pay as much as $10 per hour. 3rd Ave S behind Outdoor Emporium is a good bet for free parking (even on week days), about a 1 mile walk from the southwest corner of the CID. Most Seattle street parking is free on Sundays.


For overnight stays, planning ahead can lead to a bigger bang for your buck. Expect hotels to offer typical Downtown pricing and availability. One listing within the district showed a 2 star hotel for $179. The most expensive four star close by was listed at $415.


You can avoid the hassle of traffic and the cost of parking when visiting the CID with Seattle’s many transportation options. B us lines service the CID multiple times each hour and King Street Station is right on the west border of the CID for those coming to Seattle via Am Trak. The light rail also services the west end of the CID.

Make Seattle Work for You

The Puget Sound has much to offer, and a home in the Seattle metropolitan area gives you access to all of it. Work with Better Properties Eastsideto find a place within it for you.Partnering with an experienced local real estate agent helps sift the market for the properties that are right for you.

Photo: Joe Mabel [CC BY-SA 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Get started today with a free home evaluation!

Let our knowledgeable team evaluate your home and give you a report on its market potential.



Get started today with a free home evaluation!

Let our knowledgeable team evaluate your home and give you a report on its market potential.

© 2021 Better Properties Eastside. All rights reserved.