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Address: 3015 NW 54th St, Seattle, WA 98107-4213
Phone Number:
+1 206-780-2500
Website
Today
07:00 - 21:00
Open now
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Hours:
Sun - Sat 07:00 - 21:00
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Fee: No
Description:

The Hiram M. Chittenden Locks (locally known as the Ballard Locks) is a...

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.

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Book In Advance
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US$ 49.69*
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Seattle Locks Cruise
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US$ 70.00*
and up
Private Tour: Seattle Highlights
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US$ 79.00*
and up
Seattle Seaplane Flight: Waterfront Highlights

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Fascinating Adventure

My friends and I planned to take the Argosy Cruise to the locks. It was interesting and fun. Along the way, we saw homes on the water and boats of every size. I liked see the huge... read more

Reviewed yesterday
squatchcat
,
Billings, Montana
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2,428 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 2,369: English reviews
Billings, Montana
Level Contributor
15 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed yesterday NEW

My friends and I planned to take the Argosy Cruise to the locks. It was interesting and fun. Along the way, we saw homes on the water and boats of every size. I liked see the huge container ships that travel internationally. Very different than back home in Montana! We sat in the front of the boat and felt that... More 

Helpful?
Thank squatchcat
Anchorage, Alaska
Level Contributor
179 reviews
52 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 111 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 days ago NEW via mobile

There's a surprising amount to see at the Locks: the locks operating, the often entertaining lock operators, the fish ladder, visitor center, interesting boats, beautiful gardens, historical signs, seals and sea lions, salmon or steelhead, the railroad bridge operating, etc etc. I recommend that you definitely put this on your Seattle visit list. And best of all, it's FREE! FREE!

Helpful?
Thank AK_Steve_AK
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
132 reviews
34 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 days ago NEW via mobile

The Locks are definitely a place to visit in Seattle if you have a few extra hours. Immediately adjacent to the lock are the gardens which is maintained as part of the Locks property. The are two sets of Locks which essentially allows to two way traffic. You are right up front and close to the activities and can see... More 

Helpful?
Thank Road_warriorXTRM
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
9 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

I love watching the boats go through the Ballard Locks on their way between Puget Sound and Lake Union. I always bring my out-of-town guests here and every one of them has been thrilled. In fact, one friend from Oregon had actually never seen locks before, and only vaguely understood their purpose, to connect two bodies of water of different... More 

Helpful?
Thank Lydia O
Level Contributor
12 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 days ago NEW via mobile

If you've never been, it's a must and besides parking is free. You can watch from underground the fish swimming or just stay and watch the boats.

Helpful?
1 Thank Melissa R
Dayton, OH
Level Contributor
29 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 days ago NEW

The Hiram M. Chittenden locks and Carl English Botanical Gardens are only a mile from my daughter's apartment, so when I visit twice a year, I walk it everyday, rain or shine. The locks lead from Puget Sound into Lake Union and Lake Washington and the visitor can see a variety of luxury ships, recreational boats, working ships, barges, military,... More 

Helpful?
Thank Daytonike
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
47 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 35 helpful votes
Reviewed 5 days ago NEW via mobile

The locks are great to watch how boats are effectively using an elevator. Plus, spring through fall will almost certainly present inexperienced boaters so watching their challenges can be entertaining (I used to frequently use the locks on my boat so I feel ok posting this matter of fact). Also, the grounds are great for chilling and having a picnic.

Helpful?
Thank Sun_Fun_Beach_Travel
Orem, Utah
Level Contributor
25 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 week ago NEW

interesting to watch the ships go through the locks. There are two sets of lparallel ocks here. They will run multiple boats at the same tiem through the locks. Watched the boats enter the locks and then either be lowered or raised. The gardens are also nice to walk through. Need to come back and watch the salmon go through... More 

Helpful?
Thank knucklehead84663
Chicago
Level Contributor
44 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 week ago

If you have never experienced a busy working Lock, this is the busiest in the United States. Surrounded by beautiful, park-like grounds with great scenic background. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers do a wonderful job to accommodate tourists, with a great visitor center as well.

Helpful?
Thank OldBob22
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
28 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 week ago

walk across them see the boats go thru. worth the visit but plan to visit the northside restaurants.. Lockspot, or Red Mill Burgers. Its a funn e xcursion.. If you continue west on Shilshole Ave you'll hit the beach.. nice drive along the water.

Helpful?
Thank Robin H

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