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“the Locks” 3 of 5 stars
Review of Hiram M. Chittenden Locks

Hiram M. Chittenden Locks
3015 NW 54th St, Seattle, WA 98107
206 783 7059
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Top Rated
$43*
and up
Seattle Locks Cruise
Ranked #10 of 178 Attractions in Seattle
Type: Wharfs/ Piers/ Boardwalks, Bodies of Water, Landmarks/ Points of Interest, Landmarks
More attraction details
Attraction details
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 young children, Activities for older children
Seattle, Washington
Top Contributor
190 reviews 190 reviews
98 attraction reviews
Reviews in 75 cities Reviews in 75 cities
67 helpful votes 67 helpful votes
“the Locks”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2012

It is operated by the Fed. Government with a free entry there. You can watch the salmon spawn there. Also, a great place to have a picnic.

Visited August 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,193 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
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English first
Houston, Texas
Top Contributor
106 reviews 106 reviews
31 attraction reviews
Reviews in 62 cities Reviews in 62 cities
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
“Go with kids, fun, teaching, beutiful garden and free”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2012

The gardens you walk through are beutiful, the visitor venter dosent have much you can skip it.
The locks are very interesting to see and learn how such an engineering problem has such a simple solution.
At the salmon ladder we saw the salmon but they werent jmping for us a little disappointing but still all in all a great spot and we had a great time there
Also got to somesea lions that came to feed

The only downside was the parking that made me a little nervous as we saw a car with a broken window and it was a sunday morning sodont leave any valubales in the car

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Greenwood, Mississippi
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
5 attraction reviews
“Salmon and boats”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 17, 2012

We took the free tour, and the guide was very passionate and well-versed in the history of the locks. Much better than a typical college student who memorizes a script. He explained the workings of the locks, their significance to Seattle's development and showed us the gate where salmon cross over from the sea to the fresh water to spawn and die.

Visited August 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Dayton, Ohio
Top Contributor
78 reviews 78 reviews
32 attraction reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
44 helpful votes 44 helpful votes
“Very interesting!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 16, 2012

We enjoyed walking across and seeing the boats in the locks. The garden you walk through from the parking lot is beautiful. If you go when the salmon are running, be sure to go all the way across and down the steps to the fish ladder. It wasn't busy when we were there (end of day on a Friday), and it was easy to get to the windows to see the fish. Going back, they had moved the sidewalk. We were lucky on the timing, as we never had to wait.

Visited August 2012
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California
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
8 attraction reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
“A must visit”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 16, 2012

This is a fascinating place. We really enjoyed the transfer of boats between the Pudget Sound and the fresh water. Highly recommend a visit.

Visited August 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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