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Seattle Attractions
Hiram M. Chittenden Locks
— (Ballard Locks)
— Seattle Locks Cruise

People watching boat pass through lock - Seattle Locks - Hiram M.Chittenden Locks - Ballard Locks - Seattle, Washington

Hiram M. Chittenden Locks
3015 NW 54th St
Seattle, WA

Seattle's No. 3 Tourist Attraction
Hiram M. Chittenden Locks
are a complex of locks that sit in the middle of Salmon Bay. Known locally as the "Ballard Locks," they are Seattle's third most popular tourist attraction —
the Space Needle is No. 1
and Pike Place Market is No. 2.

The Hiram M. Chittenden Locks
Opened on July 4, 1917, the locks — operated by the Army Corps of Engineers — provide a link for boats to pass between the salt water of the Puget Sound and the fresh waters of Lake Union and Lake Washington.

Seattle Locks Cruise
FUN Seattle Locks Cruise

Kayakers passing through Seattle lock

Up-Close View of the Locks
Get an up-close view of the locks
that raises and lowers the boats
— p
eople drive for miles just to see the boats (and kayaks) passing through these famous Seattle locks.

Salmon Viewing
During the summer months, the locks provide an excellent location for visitors to see salmon eye-to-eye — through large salmon-viewing windows — as they return from their ocean migrations.

Carl S. English, Jr. Botanical Gardens
The Carl S. English, Jr. Botanical Gardens are located on the
grounds of the the Hiram M. Chittenden Locks. Free Tours
are available Mon-Fri at 1 and 3pm,
Sat-Sun 11am, 1pm and 3pm.
Open daily. Free admission.

Cruise the Locks
Take an informative 2 1/2 hour narrated Locks Cruise along Seattle's historic waterfront—and its "Sleepless in Seattle" house boat community.


Cruise boat passing through Seattle Lock -  Hiram M.Chittenden Locks - Ballard Locks - Seattle, Washington

As you can see from the photo above, there's not much room on either side of the boat to pass through the narrow locks — it takes some skillful maneuvering on the part of the captain, especially for the larger boats.

Book Seattle Locks Cruise

Seattle Locks - Hiram M.Chittenden Locks - Ballard Locks - Seattle, Washington

Hiram Chittenden Locks
Open Daily 7am-9pm.
Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, and New Year's Day.

Free Admission.

Seattle Locks - Hiram M.Chittenden Locks - Ballard Locks - Seattle, Washington

Locks Visitors Center
Stop by the Locks Visitors Center to pick up brochures, see exhibits and to watch a 12-minute orientation video of the Locks.


Winter: Oct 1 thru' Apr 30
10am-4pm. Closed Tues and Wed.

Summer: May 1 thru' Sept 30

Free Guided Tours

Mar 1 thru' Nov 30.

Major Hiram M. Chittenden
The locks are named after
Major Hiram Martin Chittenden.
He was responsible for the Locks being concrete instead of wood; for a dual lock design vs. a single lock; and for eliminating the proposed lock at the eastern end of the canal, thereby lowering the level of Lake Washington and preventing flooding.

More Info
The Hiram M. Chittenden Locks are approximately a 15-minute drive north of downtown Seattle.

Locks Cruise

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