Six best parks to take a walk

Wednesday, March 30, 2016 11:14 AM by Calista Klein

March 30th (Today!) is National Take a Walk in the Park Day! While we don’t need a national holiday to get outside and stretch our legs, this is a great opportunity to appreciate the local parks here in Pierce County. These are some of our faves.
 

Wright Park - Tacoma

Wright Park makes park walking super accessible in the midst of downtown Tacoma. Featuring a gravel walking loop and footpaths, casually stroll through the park while enjoying a milkshake from nearby Frisko Freeze, or a latte from Cosmonaut Coffee. Tired of walking? Check out the free Botanical Conservatory, shoot some hoops, play a game of horseshoe, or take a break on a bench by the pond. With a large play structure and summertime spray ground, the kids can burn off their milkshake energy while the adults relax.

Wapato Park -Tacoma

The second park on our list is another urban gem in South Tacoma, featuring a mile-long footpath enclosing Lake Wapato. Enter through the historic pergola (a type of arbor) and explore the annual gardens, or rent a picnic shelter and make it a day-long affair.

Tacoma Nature Center 

Just off Highway 16, lies the Tacoma Nature Center surrounded by 71-acres and two miles of trails.  The lower loop provides a flat shaded walk over a bridge and through wetlands, while the upper loop climbs more steeply into the forest.  The wetlands are fed by Snake Lake, but don't worry we've never actually seen any snakes there. Do however keep an eye out for frogs, ducks and humming birds.  After your stroll, let the kids play at the free Discovery Pond, [perfect for ages 2-12] as they splash in the waterfalls, climb a treehouse and slide their way back down.  

Fort Steilacoom Park and Dog Park - Lakewood

Dogs can participate in Take a Walk day too! Take your best friend along to play in over 22 acres of fenced, off-leash area in Lakewood. This park features a special area for smaller sized breeds, so dogs of any size can play safely. Strap the leash back on and explore the rest of the trails which pass through a variety of terrain, as well as a playground for the kids, and a disc-golf course.

Wildwood Park - Puyallup

If you're looking for a forested walk, this is the place to go. More than half of Wildwood is dense, natural forest, making it a great place for nature lovers to enjoy some classic Northwest scenery. The park has covered picnic shelters and day camp facilities, a historic caretaker's house, and a water reservoir to discover as you explore the woodsy trails.

Cushman Trail - Gig Harbor

Ok, while it's not technically a park, this is a great option for walking and it passes through a few parks, so we couldn't not include it on the list. A wide, paved path and mostly flat grades makes this a nice accessible walk, so grab the kids and the stroller and get walking. The 6-mile trail offers multiple parking locations, restrooms, and benches to rest along the way. We recommend parking at the Grandview Forest Park, or Cushman Trailhead Park.

There you have it, some of our favorite parks for walking in Pierce County. Hope to see you out there, celebrating Take a Walk in the Park Day.

Did we miss your favorite park? Let us know at @traveltacoma on Twitter or Instagram!

Author: Calista Klein

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