What are Some Outdoor Activities in Seattle, Washington?

Sheri Cyprus

You're not likely to run out of great outdoor activities in Seattle, Washington. Seattle's nickname is "The Emerald City" because it has so many parks and forests. Alki Beach Park, Puget Sound, Green Lake and Discovery Park are just some of the wonderful green spaces that offer interesting outdoor activities in Seattle.

Hiking trails provide fun and exercise.
Hiking trails provide fun and exercise.

Discovery Park is Seattle's biggest park and it's located in the Magnolia Park area near Puget Sound. The Park was developed from extra property belonging to the U.S. Army's Fort Lawton in the early 1970s. Discovery Park has over 150 species of birds as well as harbor seals and California sea lions. The Loop Trail covers shrub and forest ecosystems and moderately difficult hiking trails lead to a lighthouse with scenic views of Puget Sound.

Jogging is a favorite activity in Seattle.
Jogging is a favorite activity in Seattle.

Washington State’s Green Lake is only a short drive from Seattle's downtown core. Walking, running, cycling and rollerblading are popular activities around the Lake and the area also has basketball courts and fields for many other ball sports. Boating is one of the most popular outdoor activities and canoe and paddleboat rentals may be available.

Kayaking is a popular activity in Seattle.
Kayaking is a popular activity in Seattle.

Puget Sound has beautiful Pacific Northwest scenery and many opportunities for outdoor activities in Seattle. Sailing, kayaking and power-boating are all popular here as is fishing for salmon and cod. Check for water closures and fishing license requirements.

Visitors may enjoy hiking in Seattle.
Visitors may enjoy hiking in Seattle.

Hiking in nearby Olympic National Park with its breathtaking scenery is a favorite outdoor activity of many and winter activities are also abundant here. Hurricane Ridge is often open for tubing and the Park usually has trails for cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. Camping, hiking, cycling, backpacking, snowshoeing, snowboarding and skiing are just some of the many great outdoor activities in Seattle's Mount Rainier National Park.

Cross-country skiing can be done in Olympic National Park.
Cross-country skiing can be done in Olympic National Park.

Alki Beach Park is historic as it marks the place where the first white settlers landed in 1851 and were helped by Chief Seattle. Volleyball, biking, walking, jogging and rollerblading are just some of the possible outdoor activities to do here. The sandy beaches of Alki Beach Park are popular places for sunbathing and picnicking in the summer months.

Seattle is only a short drive from scenic hiking areas in the mountains.
Seattle is only a short drive from scenic hiking areas in the mountains.
Seattle is not called "The Emerald City" for its downtown, but for its many parks and forests.
Seattle is not called "The Emerald City" for its downtown, but for its many parks and forests.
The sandy beaches of Alki Beach Park are popular places for sunbathing.
The sandy beaches of Alki Beach Park are popular places for sunbathing.
Jogging is one activity that can be done at Alki Beach Park in Seattle.
Jogging is one activity that can be done at Alki Beach Park in Seattle.

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Discussion Comments

AuthorSheriC

Great tips, malena, thanks! I live in the Pacific Northwest -- Vancouver, BC and would love to try some of those boat trips one summer. Have you ever been boating in the Sunshine Coast area?

malena

Boating is very popular in Seattle during the summer. You can basically tour much of the city by boat. You can boat from the Puget Sound through the Ballard locks into Lake Union or Washington. Going through the locks is a fun experience because it raises you from the salt water of the Sound to the fresh water of the lakes!

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