Columbia City is a diverse and historic neighborhood in Seattle. It’s nestled between Lake Washington to the east and Beacon Hill to the west. A bit farther away from downtown Seattle, Columbia City is still only a 10 minute drive from the heart of the city. Downtown is also easily accessible by a quick ride on public transportation, like the light rail or metro.
Known for its international mix of restaurants, cafes, and residents, Columbia City is a great location for a Seattle getaway that’s a bit different than the norm. The business district, primarily Rainier Ave., has been added to the National Register of Historic Places. This is a great place to walk around and soak up the history.
Columbia City is a great neighborhood for a short term vacation rental if you’re looking for a trip where the past and present blend seamlessly together.
History of Columbia City
Columbia City was settled in the mid-1800s, when the rest of the Seattle area was also established by the first settlers in the region. At that time, it was deemed its own city but later became part of Seattle in the early 1900s.
Manufacturing companies set up shop in the area, aiding in the growth of the economy and population of Columbia City. Although a booming area in the early 1900s, the neighborhood hit hard times in the 1970s when crime became a major issue.
Since then, huge efforts from the private and public sector have helped to get Columbia City back on its feet and to the thriving, historic town that it is today. Much of the architecture and business fronts are still intact from the original construction of the town. Now that it’s been given Landmark District status, it looks like the history of the Columbia City will continue to be well preserved.
Things to Do in Columbia City
Columbia City has a quaint downtown area, primarily along Rainier Avenue that is the perfect area to walk around. Hip shops, craftsman-style homes, and international restaurants are all within walking distance from one another. This makes it a great neighborhood to walk around with no real schedule.
Our favorite things to do in Columbia City and nearby neighborhoods are:
- Geraldine’s Counter: This is a Columbia City staple that serves a great breakfast all day.
- Super Six: This unique eatery serves Asian-PNW fusion out of a repurposed body shop. This is a common trend in Columbia City, where you’ll find restaurants, shops, and bars using spaces originally built for something completely different.
- King Donuts: Don’t miss out on grabbing some hot, fresh, and delicious donuts for dessert from King Donuts.
- Genesee Park and Playfield: This park runs from the center of Columbia City all the way to Lake Washington. This is an expansive park that has something for the whole family, even a pet-friendly dog park. Another option for great greenspace in the neighborhood is Seward Park.
- Downtown Seattle: Columbia City is about 10 minutes from Downtown Seattle, giving you easy access to all of Seattle’s hotspots like Pike Place Market, the Space Needle, the Seattle Art Museum, the Seattle Center, and Puget Sound.
- Visit Nearby Neighborhoods: Other great nearby neighborhoods to check out while in Seattle are Madison Valley, Capitol Hill, West Seattle, Queen Anne, and Fremont.
Our Seattle Vacation Homes
There’s a lot of perks of booking a rental home directly for your next vacation. You’re not only saving on third party fees from Airbnb or Vrbo, but you’re getting the personal touch of dealing with the property managers directly. As Seattle locals, we intimately know the city.
We’re able to help you with all of your Seattle vacation needs. We can point you in the right direction for anything from nearby grocery stores to fun, unique things to do in the area, based on your interests. From the moment you check-in, you can rest assured you’re in good hands while in Seattle.
All of our properties come equipped with a full kitchen, living room, free wifi, fresh linens, and a washer/dryer. Some properties have a dining area, window air conditioning units and/or gas fireplaces.
Get ready for a great, family-friendly vacation to Seattle by staying in Columbia City.