An Insider's Guide to Seattle’s International District

Myriad shops, dining and attractions call this Asian-influenced district home.

Venture into Seattle’s International District and discover a vibrant community of shops, restaurants and attractions. The district is made up of three smaller neighborhoods: Chinatown, Japantown and Little Saigon—all providing their own slice of culture and waiting to be explored.


Dim sum, ramen, pho, sushi and a variety of other Asian cuisines are scattered throughout the district: you name it, you’ll find it here. Samurai Noodle provides Tonkotsu ramen from Japan’s Hakata (Fukuoka) region and is located adjacent to the Uwajimaya Japanese market, the anchor of the Uwajimaya Village.

Other food options include Little Sheep Mongolian Hot Pot, Pho Hoa Noodle Soup, Ho Ho Seafood and J Sushi (no website; 674 S. Weller St., 206.287.9000). Afterwards, grab some bubble tea at Young Tea, and pair all-natural milk tea with a delicious macaron, perfect for dessert.

Samurai Noodle
Samurai Noodle (Courtesy Samurai Noodle)


Drive east on South King Street to catch a glimpse of the Historic Chinatown Gate, which will guide you down a path full of parks, museums, shops and countless food options. If you want to dive into the history of Asian American culture in Seattle, the Wing Luke Museum of the Asian Pacific American Experience will tell (and show) you everything you need to know through exhibits, events and tours of the neighborhood. The Bruce Lee’s Chinatown Tour is the main attraction here; retrace the martial-arts master’s steps through his old stomping grounds.

Nearby, off South King Street and Maynard Avenue, the Seattle Pinball Museum is two floors of vintage and modern pinball machines. Also close is the Taiwanese Pavilion at Hing Hay Park, where you can take a stroll or just admire the park.

Seattle Pinball Museum
Seattle Pinball Museum (©Alabastro Photography)


If the Asian aesthetic is something you admire, pop in to Momo in Japantown, which combines Asian and European influences to create a unique store filled with gifts, men's and women’s clothing, accessories and home accents. For art lovers, Kobo’s gallery and shop specializes in Japanese folk art and showcases artists predominantly from Japan and the Northwest; featured items are pottery, figurines and textiles.