Most locals and visitors know of the trails, bluffs and eagles of Discovery Park, the Space Needle vistas of Volunteer Park, Magnuson Park’s excellent off-leash dog areas, Gas Works Park’s history, the Arboretum’s plant and tree diversity, Golden Gardens’ beaches, and Seward Park’s proximity to Lake Washington. But what of the many other Seattle city parks?
According to the Seattle Parks and Recreation website, there are over 400 parks in the city of Seattle, meaning that there are plenty of natural places to explore without leaving the city limits.
Here are some parks close to downtown that you may not have yet explored:
Cal Anderson Park (Capitol Hill): Right off of bustling Broadway, this park has really cleaned up its act in recent years. You can spend hours watching a bike polo match or a Quidditch tournament. On nice days, read a book in the grass and stare at Mount Rainier in the distance.
Carkeek Park (Ballard) – Boasting over 200 acres of woods and amazing views of Puget Sound and the Olympics, this park is worth the trip up to the city’s northern boundaries. Take a hike, go for a run, sit at the quiet beachfront, or watch the salmon spawn during the fall. You might even be greeted by a passing train or seal.
Interlaken Park (Capitol Hill): Did you know that there is a forested oasis in the heart of Capitol Hill? Interlaken Park is home to deep ravines filled with trails and surrounded by streams and old-growth forests.
Ravenna Park (Ravenna): Originally formed by glacial melt-off, this park is full of old-growth trees and trails in the middle of an urban neighborhood.
Magnolia Park (Magnolia): With city views second only to the ones you might find in Kerry Park, this is a great park to play some tennis, have a picnic, and stare at the Sound and city.
To learn more about all of Seattle’s 400+ parks, visit the Seattle Parks and Recreation website – or better yet, get outside and check them out!