When people visit Seattle and ask me for recommendations about what to see, the Pacific Science Center is always on my list.  In addition to its location on the grounds of the Seattle Center, home of the 1962 Seattle World’s Fair, the graceful arches and fountains, make it an architecturally pleasant and appealing place to visit.  Everyone seems to enjoy the Science Center.

During the World’s Fair, this was home to the US Science Pavilion.  Today it is an independent, not for profit science museum, with eight buildings housing hundreds of science exhibits, two IMAX theaters, a large Laser Dome theater, tropical butterfly house, and a planetarium.  In addition to the permanent exhibits, the Pacific Science Center hosts a number of traveling exhibits, most recently “Lucy’s Legacy:  The Hidden Treasures of Ethiopia.”

My favorite of the exhibits, and a welcome respite after a busy day of touring the Seattle Center, is the Tropical Butterfly House.  This building is climate controlled to 80 degrees, with 70% humidity, to nurture the delicate butterflies that call this home.  You’ll need to keep your eyes peeled, and this beautiful creatures may light anywhere – the ground, trees, flowers, or on you.

This is a great place for families, and their are exhibits that will appeal to age groups.  Kids seem to especially enjoy the Dinosaur exhibit, the Insect Village, and the butterflies.

The Pacific Science Center is located on the Seattle Center campus, and the Tropical Butterfly House is in Building #2.  Regular hours are 10 am – 5 pm, Monday – Friday, and until 6 pm on Saturday, Sunday, and holidays.  Summer hours are till 6 pm daily.

Admission is $18 for adults, $16 for seniors (ages 65+), $13 for youth (ages 6-15), and $11 for kids (ages 3-5).  Tickets can be purchased online or onsite.

Photo credit:  Byrmo @flickr