Alki Point: Fun in the Sun in West Seattle

 Alki Point: Fun in the Sun in West Seattle

I have fond memories of growing up in Western Washington State. Even though I now reside in Illinois, part of me will always consider the Seattle area my home. You can say this about any place but it’s especially true for me- “you can take the girl out of Seattle but you can’t take Seattle out of the girl.” Although I haven’t been a resident of the Evergreen State for 12 years, every time I go back it feels as if I never left. My parents moved to the Seattle area back in 1980 and still live there today. As well as I know the area, they know it far more. My mom, Linda, has so graciously agreed to talk a little about one of her favorite spots in the Evergreen State. (All photos were taken by her.)

Alki Point: Fun in the Sun in West Seattle

Most non-residents of Seattle, when they think of visiting here, don’t think of spending time at the beach. However, there are some wonderful beaches in the Seattle area. One of my favorites is Alki Point.

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Located in West Seattle, this is a true urban beach.

 Alki Point juts out 2.5 miles into Puget Sound toward the west, with the Alki Point Lighthouse at its westernmost point. This lighthouse is open for visitors for a few hours each weekday afternoon from Memorial Day to Labor Day. We have never been there when it is open, but that has never stopped us from having a great time. There is plenty to see and do at the beach even if you can’t tour the lighthouse.

The south side of the point is rocky and the beach is inaccessible at high tide,

 but at low tide, it is a great place to explore tide pools left by the receding waters. Our grandchildren love looking for crabs, sea anemones and other creatures. Make sure to bring water shoes to protect your feet from barnacles. We also like using this activity to teach about being respectful and protective of all of the life forms they find.

Around the point on the north side, is Alki Beach Park, a 2.5 mile-long sandy beach with fire pits and a wide sidewalk for strolling or skating. You can rent every kind of foot-powered vehicle, including surreys, bikes of all kinds, and in-line skates. You can also rent umbrellas, chairs, and beach toys for the little ones.We enjoy people-watching on this beach. On sunny summer days, there are families riding bikes, skating, swimming, kayaking, playing volleyball or frisbee and picnicking. Because it is a protected sound, the water is wave-free, except for the small swells of passing ships, so our little ones enjoy wading or swimming. The water is a little chilly, but on hot August days, no one cares about the temperature of the water.

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Public restrooms are available on the beach. 

There is even a smaller-than-life-size replica of the Statue of Liberty. And of course, if you are a fan of “Sleepless in Seattle,” this is one of the locations where the movie was filmed.

Across the water from the north beach you can see Seattle to the east and the islands of Puget Sound to the north. Far out in the Sound, ferries and container ships pass by on their way in and out of the harbor.

Across the street from the beach, small beach-style cafes, restaurants and shops line the sidewalk,

 offering all kinds of food. Our favorite is Duke’s Chowder House, because you can sit upstairs where the view is fantastic. You can also find burgers, Italian and other food choices at the many venues along the beach. Even when we bring our own picnic, we like to buy an ice cream cone from one of the open-air stands. There is nothing I like better than walking on the beach eating an ice cream cone!

On the east end of the 2.5 mile beach, there are both modern condos and quaint beach houses, often side by side. I especially like the two tiny bungalows, covered with flowers and wedged between two modern buildings. It reminds me of one of my favorite children’s stories, The Little House, by Virginia Burton.

On the busiest days, parking can be a bit challenging, but with patience and a keen eye, we have always been able to find a place to park, usually at the east end of the north beach, across the street from the condominiums.

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Alki Point is a great place for families to spend a sunny day in any season.

Thank you, Mom for taking the time to write about your favorite spot in Seattle. I’m now reminiscing about times spent there as a kid.

Have you been to Alki Point? What is your favorite spot in Seattle?

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