Golden Gardens is one of Seattle’s most popular parks and one of the Northwest’s most beautiful beaches. The 87-acre park in Ballard is situated on Puget Sound, overlooking the Olympic mountains (see map).
During the summer months, the park is packed with beachgoers enjoying the sun, sand and stunning views. Kids play in a small stream on the beach, and polls allow volleyball players to set up their nets.
Visitors can enjoy a few trails around the park (trail map), including a short loop on the northern end through a wetland area.
Sunsets are often spectacular, drawing evening crowds with cameras.
Fires are allowed in designated pits scattered around the beach, and picnic shelters can be reserved in advance. There’s a beach house in the center of the park with bathrooms. Above the park, there’s an off-leash dog area (map).
Beachcombers flock to Golden Gardens to explore the low tides, and naturalists are often on hand to point out crabs, sea urchins and sea lettuce.
A boat launch is located just south of the park.