The striking onyx Columbia Center (701 5th Ave., 206/386-5151, 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Mon.–Fri., $5 adults, $3 seniors and kids) climbs 76 stories above Seattle , dwarfing every other building in town. A glassed-in viewing deck on the 73rd floor provides a panorama of the entire region.
Ask at the information desk in the lobby for access. With a view like this, it’s hard to imagine a better locale to watch the traffic.