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Hiram M. Chittenden Locks

Address: 3015 NW 54th St, Seattle, WA 98107
Phone Number: 206 783 7059
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Top Rated
$41*
and up
Seattle Locks Cruise
93%
Ranked #12 of 214 Attractions in Seattle
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Type: Wharfs/ Piers/ Boardwalks, Bodies of Water, Landmarks/ Points of Interest, Sights & Landmarks, Nature & Parks
Fee: No
Owner description: The Hiram M. Chittenden Locks (locally known as the Ballard Locks) is...
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Attraction details
Type: Wharfs/ Piers/ Boardwalks, Bodies of Water, Landmarks/ Points of Interest, Sights & Landmarks, Nature & Parks
Fee: No
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: The Hiram M. Chittenden Locks (locally known as the Ballard Locks) is a waterway system that connects the saltwater of the Puget Sound to the fresh water of the Ship Canal, which sits about 20 feet above sea level.  Boats enter the locks, the gates close and the water rises or falls to the level of the destination waterway.  Watching boats pass through the locks, exploring the 7 acres of botanical gardens and looking for fish on the fish ladder is fun and free entertainment that draws locals and tourists alike.
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children
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1,209 reviews from our community

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English first
Seattle, Washington
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
21 attraction reviews
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 21, 2015 NEW

I like to wander through the locks. Day dream about owning some of the beautiful yachts that come through... observe the wildlife and, on this occasion, there was a vintage car show. Pretty cool

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London, Canada
Top Contributor
146 reviews 146 reviews
98 attraction reviews
93 helpful votes 93 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 20, 2015 NEW

This was a fun place to watch the boats line up and rise through the locks. There was a lot of boat traffic when we visited in May! Very scenic area and lots of fish around so the sea lions were enjoying the fresh catch of the day:)

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Sioux City, Iowa
Top Contributor
80 reviews 80 reviews
31 attraction reviews
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 18, 2015

It was fun to watch the boats go through the locks -- one tug boat and another sale boat. Now -- how often are you able to see a lock system work. So fun to walk through -- then go down and see some of the under deck views. We didn't get to see any Salmon, but in the Spring... More 

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Lakeside, California
Senior Contributor
24 reviews 24 reviews
8 attraction reviews
27 helpful votes 27 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 14, 2015

Our Shutter tour stopped here, but not enough time to watch any boats get through. Very cool place to watch though

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seattle wa
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2015

this is a great place to go when the fish are going through the ladder.....the south side of the locks has a viewing area of salmon and steelhead, with big windows and info.....great place for pictures!!!

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seattle
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2015

They usually suggest it would probably not be their choice, but since I recommend it, they'll check it out. They always say it was a highlight of their Seattle visit. The film is excellent and gives you a good understanding and appreciation of the locks. You can park on the Magnolia side of the canal at the adjoining park -... More 

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Albuquerque, New Mexico
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
6 attraction reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 7, 2015

It was an easy accessible drive with plenty of parking. We got to see the boats being lifted into the locks, which was very cool. As they fill the lock up with water to put the boat in, you can see fish swimming in. You can also walk down some stairs and watch the salmon swimming up the ladders. We... More 

Was this review helpful? Yes 3
Sammamish, Washington
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2015

great way to get a glimpse into the much used waterways of Puget Sound So great to watch boats come in and understand how a lock system can get you from one body of water to the next

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Seattle, Washington
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
7 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2015

The locks, moving large and small boats from a higher freshwater to lower saltwater, are a unique experience. Bring the kids to walk along or directly above and get a close-up view. Summer is best, with boats tightly maneuvered into the areas, and lots of action to be seen

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Woodbury, Minnesota
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
8 attraction reviews
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2015

2nd time visiting from MN. We were lucky enough to see some salmon climbing the ladders. Visited in Sept. 2014. Was also here in May, 2013. Beautiful both times.

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