We Heart the Big Dark: Seattle's Top Winter Activities
say what you will about the Big Dark, but wintertime brings its own particular brand of coziness that endless summers and gourd-filled falls simply can't. Sure, the weather outside is frightful, but with our go-to winter guide, it's all the more reason to don your favorite infinity scarf and join the fa-la-la fun.
Holiday it up
Obvious? Sure. Unavoidable? Definitely. Seattle and surrounds embrace the holiday season faster than you can twirl a candy cane and say "hot cocoa." If that's your thing, we've got lists aplenty for where to see holiday lights, enjoy festive events, find a Christmas tree, and order takeout for Christmas or Hanukkah (or even eat out). Scrooge more your vibe? Read how one writer made peace with our yuletide obsession.
Head for the (ski) hills
Snow in the lowlands makes us freak, but snow in the mountains is a thing of beauty. Close by, we've got a handful of major ski areas—if you're up for a drive, there are way more—to get in your turns. Before you head up the lift, though, consider a ski pass and some updated gear at a local outfitter.
Try a cozy recipe
Disclaimer: These all involve soup. But what better way to thaw out than with a recipe full of warmth and flavor? Manolin and Rupee Bar's Liz Kenyon shares her Myanmar-inspired turmeric soup. Revel and Joule's Rachel Yang offers a speedy hot pot fit for an entire family. And Herschell Taghap suggests his Thanksgiving-prep clam chowder. Yes, you can lick the bowl.
Get outside (yes, really)
On the snow front, it's not just about hurtling down a hill on two twigs. Winter in outdoor-loving Washington also means tailgating in parking lots, making a snowy figure out of slush, sledding, hiking (yes, really again) on snowshoes, and even camping. Snow's not everything, though. We have a pretty epic list of winter beaches.
Shop for yourself...
'Tis the season for holiday shopping, even if you do your best to avoid the commercialism. So make like the puffer coat that Eddie Bauer gave us and pursue local brands that offer everything from sustainable luxury knitwear to creative oddities in a trailer park. Need to find a Nordstrom Rack, stat? We've got you covered there too.
...and for others
Didn't think we'd let this one wrap up without mention of a gift, did you? We'll go a step further and say "gift guide." But it's not just about the kids or your friends or your "it's complicated" hangout buddy. This is the season to remember all your neighbors, from those in need to the nonprofits that work so hard to help all year-round.