Here are some recommended places for an after dinner constitutional on Thanksgiving Day. These easy, beautiful parks are perfect for a leisurely stroll for the whole family.
The parks are all open daily from dawn to dusk. They are listed roughly north to south throughout the Puget Sound region:
Everett Evergreen Arboretum & Gardens is situated on 3½ acres in American Legion Memorial Park includes ten themed gardens, sculptures, and ADA approved pervious pathways in most areas.
Seattle Green Lake Park is Seattle’s iconic urban park and natural preserve for hundreds of species of trees, plants, and birds. The 2.8-mile path around the lake is well-maintained and a popular recreational spot for walkers, runners, bikers, and skaters.
Seattle Commodore Park offers great views of Salmon Bay along the south side of Seattle’s Lake Washington Ship Canal (across from Ballard Locks). Water flows through the spillways and ships and boats of all sizes can be observed traversing the Ballard locks. There is a short, comfortable walk along a promenade.
Seattle Washington Park Arboretum offers year-round interest along the trails that wind through 230 acres of gardens, natural areas, and wetlands.
Seattle Olympic Sculpture Park, maintained by Seattle Art Museum is a 9-acre former industrial transformed into open and vibrant green space that provides you a unique opportunity to experience BIG art outdoors against the beauty of the Olympic Mountains (weather permitting) and Puget Sound.
Seattle Seward Park in south Seattle features an easy, flat, paved perimeter path around an old-growth forest with beautiful, natural views of Lake Washington, including Mount Rainier.
Seattle Chinese Garden is one of the largest Chinese gardens outside of China. The 4.6 acre garden is a showcase for elements customary to Chinese gardens: plants, stones, architecture, and water. Admission is free, although donations are greatly appreciated.
Seattle Kubota Garden features a stunning 20-acres of hills and valleys, the streams, waterfalls, ponds, rock outcroppings and an exceptionally rich and mature collection of plant material. Open year-round during daylight hours.
Lake Wilderness Arboretum in Maple Valley includes five acres of display gardens and 30 acres of forest trails with a diverse plant collections in both natural and cultivated landscapes.
Highline SeaTac Botanical Garden situated on 10½ acres adjacent to the North SeaTac Community Center is a one-of-a-kind heritage location that was created to preserve some of the area’s most treasured gardens.
King County Parks system covers 26,000 acres of public lands and trails at 200 parks. Don’t know where to start? Seven of the best-known parks are: Burke-Gilman Trail, Cougar Mountain Regional Wildland Park, Interurban Trail, Marymoor Park, Rattlesnake Mountain, Sammamish River Trail, and Soos Creek Trail.
Tacoma Point Defiance Park is 760-acres including a natural forest, saltwater beaches, and spectacular views. Open daily and parking is free. The Primary trails through the park are foot trails (no bicycles). The Five Mile Drive outer loop is closed to vehicle traffic in the morning (M-F until 10AM, Sa-Su until 1PM).
Tacoma’s Ruston Way Waterfront is a stunning two-mile path along the saltwater banks of Puget Sound with views of Mount Rainier and Commencement Bay.
Tacoma Gordon Dee Alcorn Arboretum on grounds of the University of Puget Sound honors biology professor and campus arborist Gordon Alcorn tireless dedication to his students, academic excellence, and the preservation of nature and the environment.
Fort Steilacoom Park located south of Tacoma offers 340-acres of trails, which you can navigate on foot or by bike.