5 Awesome Grunge Landmarks of Seattle

September 29th, 2016 by

Seattle is well-known as the birthplace of grunge music. Whether you’ve traveled to Seattle as a music fan to see the sites, or you’re a local who has some extra time to visit these grunge landmarks, there is plenty to see when it comes to places that honor grunge music in this popular city.

A Sound Garden

Seattle’s A Sound Garden is said to be the inspiration for the band Soundgarden, who was instrumental in the establishment of grunge. The band has sold over ten million records in the US alone and over 22 million worldwide. A Sound Garden, created by Douglas R. Hollis, consists of a massive musical and artistic installation located on the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Western Service Campus. Admission is free and visitors enjoy a scenic half-mile walk to the landmark.

The Kurt Cobain Memorial

Fans of the musician will want to visit the unofficial Kurt Cobain Memorial at Viretta Park. A simple park located in an elite Seattle neighborhood, the area includes benches and pine trees. Throughout the memorial, you will find poignant messages and photos on the benches of the park honoring the man known as the father of grunge music. The site is named Kurt Cobain’s memorial being that his former address, 171 Lake Washington Boulevard East, is located directly adjacent to the park. Visiting the modest park is free.


Have fun with some exciting nightlife when you visit Re-Bar, a popular nightclub in Seattle that hosted Nirvana’s release party for Nevermind in 1991. The club has been a supporter of music, art, and indie culture since its inception. The venue is said to still have an appreciation for grunge and offers dancing, music, and unique events such as staged readings, burlesque shows, improv comedy, poetry slams, and more. Re-Bar also hosts Decibel, an annual musical festival.

Hotel Max

Hotel Max pays special tribute to Sub Pop Records, which was founded in 1986 and was the first to sign many grunge bands such as Nirvana, Soundgarden, and Mudhoney. The hotel features a floor dedicated to memorabilia showcasing grunge artists and Sub Pop Records. The furnishings and room décor give a nod to what was known as Seattle Sound grunge music. This hotel is located at 620 Stewart Street, in downtown Seattle, and offers rooms with rates starting at around $180.

El Corazon

Previously known as Off Ramp, the musical venue now known as El Corazon hosted many major grunge bands, including Pearl Jam, Nirvana, Alice in Chains, and Mudhoney. Now known as a premier Seattle music and event location, El Corazon, has continued its tradition of serving as the launch pad for talented and aspiring musical artists. The venue is located at 109 Eastlake Avenue East.

Although there have been many modern changes in the city, Seattle will always be known as the birthplace of the unique musical style that is grunge. Awesome grunge landmarks of Seattle range from buzzing nightclubs to simple, unadorned spots like Viretta Park, so there is something for everyone.

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