An urban park that welcomes more than 3 million visitors a year, Point Defiance Park is home to an old-growth forest. The park's expansive grounds feel far from the surrounding city. The ancient trees in this 284 hectare (702 acre) park are accompanied by a rhododendron garden, rose garden, and beaches, all accessible from the many trails and the boardwalk. A boathouse protects private vessels from the elements, and ferries transport visitors to Vashon Island. The city's zoo and aquarium call the park home, as does Fort Nisqually. Put Point Defiance Park at the forefront of your travel plans using our Tacoma trip itinerary planner .
Point Defiance Park Reviews
We didn’t visit the aquarium or zoo. We did the short loop hike and visited the flower gardens. The trail was well maintained and not too difficult for our kids. Visited Anthony’s for lunch and sat wa... more »
Got in on free senior day, by coincidence. Enjoyed the zoo and surroundings. Parking is difficult right by the zoo as it stays busy. more »
There seems to be something for everyone here. For anyone wanting to spend time on the waterfront, this is a slam dunk. Plus, the surrounding grounds hold some nice hiking terrain through forested hills. The marina is convenient for boating and to buy some last minute tackle whether you fish from a craft or the shore. The park tapers off from a manicured lawn into direct rustic beach front with boulders and trees as your only adjacent structures. Parking is convenient, if not overly abundant. Bonus points for the zoo and aquarium being built into this multi-purpose old school park.
A wonderful experience for kids and grown ups alike. Great exhibits and learning opportunities, especially the red wolves and the work at the zoo is doing to save them. The new aquarium is amazing. We loved watching the turtle and hammerhead sharks. Sting ray touch tank, camel rides and feeding the birds are so fun. Pack a lunch and enjoy the day here.
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