Ride Guide: Pike Place Market

a bicycle trail through pike place

Welcome back to Ride Guides: a series that traces our favorite local bike routes and showcases select destinations along the way.

In the first guide, we followed the Greenlake Loop with Gas Works & Ravenna Park with stops at local coffee shops, cafes, breweries, and viewpoints. This week, we’re mapping out an easy ride from the Montlake neighborhood to world-famous Pike Place Market.

Along the 5-mile route (one way), you’ll pass through urban parks, trails, gardens, and viewpoints before landing at the Market to sample favorite local shopping and dining destinations. Gear up and be prepared to ride with moderate traffic, with some stretches along urban bike paths.

1. Begin at Montlake Bicycle Shop on 24th Ave E in the Montlake neighborhood.

2. Travel south to E Interlaken Blvd, where you’ll join the Lake Washington Bicycle Path and wind through acres of wooded greenery at Interlaken Park.

3. On the other side of Interlaken, you’ll cross over SR 520 and by grassy Roanoke Park in north Capitol Hill — the perfect place for a picnic stop on a clear and dry day. Just across the I-5 overpass, take a breather at Bagley Viewpoint and admire Lake Washington and the Bellevue skyline in the distance.

4. Next, you’ll turn left on Franklin Ave E and continue south to E Newton, then Lakeview Blvd E on the east side of I-5. If you have some extra time, opt for a slight detour at this point to meander through the flowery hillside oasis at Streissguth Gardens.

5. Follow Lakeview Blvd E south to Melrose Trail and through Bellevue Place to Melrose Ave E. You’ll then have ample shops, eateries, and activities to choose from near the intersection of Melrose and Pine. Melrose Market on Minor Ave is a local favorite and paragon of artisanal foods and goods, including top-quality beans at Honor Society Coffee and colorful bouquets at the indoor flower shop. John John’s Game Room is another unique option for pinball wizards thirsty for beer and old-school arcade games.

6. Follow Pine all the way toward the waterfront, passing by Westlake Center, until reaching Pike Place Market.

7. Hopefully you’ve worked up an appetite by now, because there’s no better place to fill up than the Market. Try the friendly Mexican Grocery (next to the original Starbucks) for fresh handmade tamales and salsa. Thirsty? Beer drinkers need not look further than Pike Brewing Company. Bookworms will love wandering the stacks at Lamplight Books on the Market’s lower level and Left Bank Books on the corner of Pike Street.

8. Before heading back, take advantage of some of the finest views of Elliott Bay, Mt. Rainier, and the Olympic Mountains. At the north end, Victor Steinbrueck Park is a popular stop for Market crowds.

9. Simply trace the same route on your return journey to Montlake, or ride to Westlake Station on 4th and Pine if you want to connect with a bus line or light rail.