Nestled into a quiet corner of the Pacific Northwest, Bellevue is a beautiful town just across the lake from Seattle. With mountains on every side and massive stretches of untamed forest, Bellevue offers plenty of outdoor activities for even the most reluctant adventurers. Next time you’re in town and the weather’s good, be sure to hit up some of the following attractions.
Bellevue Downtown Park
Image via Flickr by .curt.
If you don’t have the means to escape the city limits, take a stroll through the 20-acre Bellevue Downtown Park. Here, you’ll be able to escape the Seattle metro area and reconnect with the natural world. Enjoy the tumbling waterfall or enjoy a picnic while admiring Mt. Rainier in the distance. In the summer, you can even stop by for Fourth of July fireworks or an outdoor movie on the lawn. Two new additions, Inspiration Playground and Complete the Circle, were just finished in summer 2017.
Bellevue Botanical Garden
Image via Flickr by bluebrightly
At the Bellevue Botanical Garden, you’ll enjoy the picturesque view of thousands of plants in their natural habitats. The 53-acre complex features a number of natural and restored wetlands as well as cultivated gardens. Once you’ve strolled the grounds, buy a plant to take home or learn more about what you’ve seen at the Garden Visitor Center. The gardens also host a number of community events, such as art exhibits, summer concerts, and holiday light shows. Best of all, admission is free, meaning you can visit as many times as you’d like.
Mercer Slough Nature Park
Image via Flickr by Oran Viriyincy
As one of the city’s biggest parks, Mercer Slough Nature Park is comprised of over 320 acres of original wildlife habitat. It’s also the biggest freshwater wetland that still exists in the area. Peruse more than 7 miles of trails or learn something about the wilderness you’re exploring at the environmental education center. If you have a watercraft like a canoe or a kayak, you might even enjoy cruising down the 2.6-mile water trail that winds through the park.
Kelsey Creek Farm and Park
Image via Flickr by l.madhavan
Want to escape the hustle and bustle of the city without leaving it? You’ll want to make a stop at Kelsey Creek Farm, which is a true oasis in the middle of the city. This fully functioning farm lets visitors experience the country life without driving far. It’s home to a number of farm animals, including chicken, ponies, goats, pigs, sheep, waterfowl, and rabbits. Schedule a tour to learn more about the history and workings of the farm or sign your kids up for a farm class to give them a hands-on experience with the animals.
Once you’ve created your itinerary for your stay in Bellevue, make sure you have great accommodations booked. Searching for hotels in Bellevue and comparing prices is the best way to save money. or even cheaper options, find and reserve campgrounds in the Bellevue area. Keep in mind that the more you save on your room, the more you can spend on having fun in the city. Once everything is official, you can start counting down the days until you get to explore the outdoor offerings of this Washington city.