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Address: 3015 NW 54th St, Seattle, WA 98107-4213
Phone Number: +1 206-780-2500
See all hours
Mon 07:00 - 21:00
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Fee: No

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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USD 44.66*
and up
Seattle Locks Cruise
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USD 60.00*
and up
Private Tour: Seattle Highlights
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USD 60.00*
and up
Seattle Shore Excursion: Private City Tour

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 2,329 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 1366
  • 767
    Very good
  • 127
  • 9
  • 4
Beautiful day and fun time for family.

We went with our extended family to see the locks and the fish ladders. It was a fun day. It was a great deal of walking for grandma but we took it slow and steady and she... read more

4 of 5 bubblesReviewed 9 February 2016
Mary C
Seattle, Washington
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2,329 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 2,273: English reviews
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
6 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 February 2016

We went with our extended family to see the locks and the fish ladders. It was a fun day. It was a great deal of walking for grandma but we took it slow and steady and she enjoyed it very much but was tired at the end of the event.

Thank Mary C
Tulsa, OK
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 9 February 2016

It was a nice visit to see an operating lock. I was informed to come in June or July to see the salmon climb the fish ladder.

Thank WHHLaw
Edmonds, Washington
Level Contributor
21 reviews
17 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 8 February 2016

Watching ships and boats pass through a water way may not see like fun but the engineering is what's incredible. So sit tight and watch the show as they use the water like an elevator.

Thank Kidcurry3
Seattle, Washington
Level Contributor
104 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 February 2016

Everyone should see the Locks. This is a fascinating place to take someone from out of town. The area is beautiful any time of the year. In Spring and Summer flowers are just a wonderful experience on the way up to the locks. Watching small and large ships and boats going through the locks is and experience. One could spend... More 

Thank Launa H
Poulsbo, Washington
1 review
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 February 2016 via mobile

Nice Scenery and beautiful I definitely enjoyed my time at the Locks! Thank you and I recommend it to Families and others definitely. Enjoy...

Thank Phoenix G
Lawrence, Kansas
Level Contributor
716 reviews
417 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 124 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 January 2016

The Chittenden Locks is fascinating. First of all you can watch as boats large and small pass through the locks to and from Lake Union. Watching and learning about the technology is interesting. Then as a bonus they have a fish ladder where you can watch salmon as they migrate to and from lakes and river around Puget Sound. This... More 

Thank Robert S
Springfield, Virginia
Level Contributor
160 reviews
45 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 January 2016

We came on a rainy afternoon. We hoped to take out five-year-old granddaughters to see the fish ladder, but--alas--no fish. However, we did get to see a boat transit the

Thank grandpere
Montvale, New Jersey
Level Contributor
202 reviews
64 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 January 2016

This a very cool place especially when the salmon are running and boats come through. A marvel of engineering. Check out the locks the scoot over to the Ballard Section for lunch!!!

Thank coachee1313
Shoreline, Washington
Level Contributor
27 reviews
13 attraction reviews
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 January 2016

Watching large vessels, smaller boats, sailboats navigate the locks is truly an experience in itself. For out of town people, it is a great place to take them, beautiful gardens surround the locks. Watching the fish ladders is amazing as well as the seals. Great for families and singles.

Thank Lee L
Bellevue, Washington, United States
Level Contributor
7 reviews
4 attraction reviews
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 January 2016

I have been coming to the locks for years. My son is one of those "transportation/machinery"kids - and he loves to watch the boats and the machinery at the Locks. On a sunny day - it is a great place to bring a picnic and enjoy the breeze off the water, watch the boats and other people! I think it... More 

Thank Karen M

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