Hey there, Explore Washington State reader! Hilary and Roscoe here. It’s another rainy day in Seattle, so in other words, it’s a perfect time to write about one of our favorite local adventures! Roscoe, my dog, is my go-to partner whenever I want to explore a new place in the area. We recently checked out Discovery Park in Seattle and couldn’t wait to tell you all about it. Whether you’re a local, a new resident or visiting Seattle for the first time, this park needs to be on your list.

stand up paddle boarding at discovery park

Plan Your Visit

When planning a trip to a new city I always try and get a mix of natural attractions along with the more metropolitan sites. Discovery Park is perfect because it’s so close to downtown Seattle. In fact, it’s only a 15-minute drive from the Space Needle! The park itself has plentiful parking and no admission fee. Its official hours of operation are 4:00 AM to 11:30 PM. While there are certain areas where dogs are restricted, much of the park is open to explore with your adventure pup.

Explore Discovery Park

At 534 acres, Discovery Park is the largest park in the city. No matter what you’re looking for in an outdoor adventure, this park probably has it. Are you a beach person who relaxes instantly when you hear the waves hitting the shore? With both sea cliffs and beaches, the park is surrounded on two sides by water. Take a minute to sit on the beach and enjoy the gorgeous views of Puget Sound. Do you prefer a more isolated walk through the woods? The Discovery Trail Loop is an official National Recreation Trail and runs 2.8 miles through meadows, forest and along the beach for some of the best views of the park. The park also has the traditional facilities associated with city parks. Along with the hiking trails you’ll have access to basketball courts, tennis courts, volleyball courts, a play area, restrooms, drinking fountains and even a lighthouse! 

Dog at Discovery Park beach
west point lighthouse at discovery park
hiker on the trail at discovery park

Watch for Wildlife

When exploring Discovery Park keep your eyes open for some of the creatures who call this park home. In fact, back in 2015, The National Wildlife Federation listed Seattle as one of the “Top Ten Cities for Wildlife.” While on our walk Roscoe and I saw a bunny and a seal! Depending on the time of year, you could also witness whales and some of the 270 species of birds that call this park home.

sunset from the beach at discovery park

Washington is a state rich with natural beauty and this large park with its coastline, mountain views, and lush forests is a perfect spot to take in the view. You can spend a quick 30-minute trip getting in some fresh air or plan a couple-hour hike exploring all this park has to offer. No matter what you choose you’ll be sure to get a good look into all Washington has to offer.

Please remember when exploring the great outdoors to leave it better than you found it. This includes cleaning up after your pet. Leave no trace so we can continue to enjoy our world for years to come.

Photos: Brandon Fralic, Hilary Walesch