The Best Quotes about Seattle

Pike Place Market at Christmastime, Seattle, Washington, USA
Danita Delimont / Getty Images

Seattle is a literary city, a grunge city, a culinary city…a city that’s been mentioned far and wide in books, movies and more. Most residents of the Seattle area have something to say about the Emerald City, but sometimes it’s best to look at a variety of quotes from a variety of people to get the true sense of a place.

More about Seattle: Why is Seattle Called the Emerald City? | What's Seattle Famous for? | Seattle's Population

  • 01 of 07

    Some of the very best quotes about Seattle...

    Chief Seattle Statue
    Stuart Westmorland / Getty Images

    Take only memories, leave nothing but footprints.
    -Chief Seattle

    To some extent, Seattle remains a frontier metropolis, a place where people can experiment with their lives, and change and grow and make things happen.
    -Tom Robbins, novelist

    In Seattle we live among the trees and the waterways, and we feel we are rocked gently in the cradle of life. Our winters are not cold and our summers are not hot and we congratulate ourselves for choosing such a spectacular place to rest our heads.
    -From “The Art of Racing in the Rain” by Garth Stein

  • 02 of 07

    Quotes that capture the city...

    View Of Cityscape Against Clear Sky
    Thomas Klinder / EyeEm / Getty Images

    In Seattle, I soon found that my radical ideas and aesthetic explorations—ideas and explorations that in Richmond, Virginia, might have gotten me stoned to death with hush puppies—were not only accepted but occasionally applauded.
    -Tom Robbins, novelist

    I think it's evident that expensive neighborhoods in Seattle are surrounded by natural beauty. That elevates city life. So if we can make cities more attractive in the long run, we can be smarter about issues like development, zoning and economics.
    -Stone Gossard, lead guitarist for Pearl Jam

  • 03 of 07

    Quotes by people who have lived here...

    Game Day at Husky Stadium
    Philip James Corwin / Getty Images

    At night, what you see is a city, because all you see is lights. By day, it doesn't look like a city at all. The trees out-number the houses. And that's completely typical of Seattle. You can't quite tell: is it a city, is it a suburb, is the forest growing back?
    -Jonathan Raban, travel writer and novelist

    Traditionally, Seattle has been a great sports town and great football town. What the Huskies have achieved over the years has been pretty amazing. That's how I got my first taste of football - when I went with my father to Husky Stadium.
    -Paul Allen, businessman and co-founder of Microsoft

    Seattle is for people who love culture, but refuse to sacrifice their wild nature to attain it.
    -From “Seduced by Innocence” by Kimberly Kinrade

  • 04 of 07

    Quotes by authors love the appeal of the Northwest...

    Road Seen Through Wet Car Windshield
    Hiu Lai / EyeEm / Getty Images

    She was back in western Washington state, where rain was so prevalent that a day of sunshine was the lead story on the local news.
    -From “Barefoot Season” by Susan Mallery

    The sky in Seattle is so low, it felt like God had lowered a silk parachute over us. Every feeling I ever knew was up in that sky. Twinkling joyous sunlight; airy, giggle cloud wisps; blinding columns of sun. Orbs of gold, pink. flesh, utterly cheesy in their luminosity. Gigantic puffly clouds, welcoming, forgiving, repeating infinitely across the horizon as if between mirrors; and slices of rain, pounding wet misery in the distance now, but soon on us, and in another part of the sky, a black stain, rainless.
    -From “Where’d You Go, Bernadette” by Maria Semple

    We all came to Seattle in hopes of building better lives. No one said we wouldn't have to struggle first.
    -From “Instant Frontier Family” by Regina Scott

    Continue to 5 of 7 below.
  • 05 of 07

    And more quotes...

    Glasshouse, Chihuly Garden and Glass, Seattle, Washington State, USA
    Michael Wheatley / Getty Images

    Simply as a writer of books I'm thrilled and proud that Seattle should have raised, on a public vote, sufficient money to build a central library, and moreover to rebuild every other library in the city: 28 of them.
    -Jonathan Raban, travel writer and novelist

    Its like a hypnotist put everyone from Seattle into a collective trance. “You are getting sleepy, when you wake up you will want to live only in a Craftsman house, the year won't matter to you, all that will matter is that the walls will be thick, the windows tiny, the rooms dark, the ceilings low, and it will be poorly situated on the lot.”
    -From “Where’d You Go, Bernadette” by Maria Semple

    Hovering over me was the Chihuly chandelier. Chihulys are the pigeons of Seattle. They're everywhere and even if they don't get in your way, you can't help but build up a kind of antipathy toward them.
    -Maria Semple, novelist

  • 06 of 07

    Quotes by famous residents...

    Amazon Headquarters

    Seattle is this curious liberal 'island.'
    -Jonathan Raban, travel writer and novelist

    Seattle is a liberal city, its politics not so much blue (in the American, not the British, sense) as deep ultramarine, and its manners are studiously polite.
    -Jonathan Raban, travel writer and novelist

    And Seattle isn't really crazy anymore. It's a big dot-com city.
    -Krist Novoselic, former Nirvana guitarist

    My wife and I just prefer Seattle. It's a beautiful city. Great setting. You open your front door in the morning and the air smells like pine and the sea, as opposed to bus exhaust.
    -Ron Reagan, author

  • 07 of 07

    And even former mayors...

    Seattle Great Wheel
    Kristin Kendle

    Your friends in Seattle are downright Canadian in their niceness. None of you has a cell phone. The girls wear hoodies and big cotton underpants and walk around with tangled hair and smiling, adorned backpacks. Do you know how absolutely exotic it is that you haven't been corrupted by fashion and pop culture? A month ago I mentioned Ben Stiller, and do you remember how you responded? ‘Who's that?' I loved you all over again.
    -Maria Semple, novelist

    I've been through WTO riots in Seattle, massive earthquakes, major floods... forest fires. I just try to be as even-keeled and calm as possible.
    -Gary Locke, former mayor of Seattle