This is the beach directly across the street from our old house.
This is Bellows Beach, one of our favorites. I took this one last October when I was in Hawaii for my berfday!
When we moved here to Seattle, we obviously had to shift our view on what constitutes a "beach". Sure, there are gorgeous beaches out on the coast like this one:
But I'd rather not go boogie boarding where a wetsuit is mandatory and the risk of hypothermia outweighs the fun.
It's no problem, though! If you look at a map of the Seattle area, you'll see a large body of water just to the east of the city, also known as Lake Washington. And let me tell ya, the beaches on this lake are plentiful! There may not be soft, white sand, turquoise water or, you know, WAVES, but there are definitely "beaches". And come summertime? I can't get there fast enough.
My Favorite Lake Washington Beaches
- Magnuson Park - Located on the northwest side of the lake, on the old Sand Point Naval Base property, this beach boasts large grassy areas for picnicking, a kite flying hill, a "Sound Garden" (yes, this is where the band got their name) and long stretches of public beach access. It is also where I met a boy 2 summers ago, a boy I was still dating when I met The Scientist...and that is a story for another post...I usually grab my beach bag, a good book, my floaty toy and head to this beach for some serious relaxation. Unfortunately, that relaxation can sometimes be cruelly interrupted, as evidenced by this photo I took last summer:
- Madison Park Beach - Madison Park is one of my favorite neighborhoods in Seattle. It's full of fabulous restaurants, chic boutiques, tree-lined streets and multi-million dollar mansions (including Howard Schultz'!). The beach in Madison Park (located directly east of downtown Seattle) doesn't disappoint, either. There is a large grassy knoll on which everyone stakes their claim, there is a shallow roped off area for the kidlets (a lifeguard is on duty until 7 pm), and a float further out with a low-dive and high-dive diving board. It's the closest beach to downtown Seattle and is always PACKED on a sunny day. It's also a great spot to watch the Blue Angels during SeaFair, which is a summer festival that runs every year during July and August. Madison Park Beach is a beach I like to enjoy with a group of friends, especially when Cactus is right across the street! BEST. MARGARITAS. EVER. (I also saw Bill Gates there a couple years ago)
- Houghton Beach Park - This beach is on the east side of the lake (the side on which I currently live) and has definitely become one of my very favorite summer spots in the last few years (I've always lived on the Seattle side of the lake and didn't get to know the Eastside beaches until a few years ago). All the beaches on the lake are family friendly, but this one seems especially so. There is a larger sandy area, a wonderful playground, and lots of shallow water for kiddos. But there is also a large grassy area and a long dock where a lot of the high school kids and folks more my age like to spend their beach time. The beach has a concession stand during the summer, selling ice cream treats and other snacks to hungry beachgoers. But Kidd Valley (a local burger joint) is also right across the street! Burgers, shakes and garlic fries, oh my! Houghton Beach Park is also where the annual Kirkland Triathlon takes place. One of the big benefits of beaching on the Eastside is that you get sunshine until very late in the evening. It's not rare to see people swimming out there until 9 or 10 pm on a hot summer evening.
Do you have a beach of any kind where you live? If you're not the beach type, what's your favorite summer spot for cooling off?