9 Tips from Locals for Keeping Cool in Tacoma this Summer
Our locals know that Tacoma has some great places to cool off at while having fun in the summer sun—from pools and spraygrounds to parks and beaches, these locals have the inside scoop!
Here are 9 tips for keeping cool in Tacoma this summer, recommended by our residents:
POOLS & SPRAYGROUNDS
- Located at 2323 N. Shirley St. Tacoma, WA 98407
- Hours: 10:00am-8:00pm weekends (May 6-21 & September 9-24); 10:00am-8:00pm daily (May 27-September 4)
“Kandle Park Sprayground is very popular for my kids once we hit the 80-degree weather,” shares Sheryll Tan. “Although there are a couple of spraygrounds in Tacoma (Titlow Park, Norpoint, etc.), this tops their list maybe because it has more variations of play.”
The best part? “...Admission is free for the sprayground!” Additionally, Tan notes that “Kandle Park also has Tacoma's newest outdoor pool… and it is not just any other pool, it is the first wave pool in Pierce County.” However, “there is a small fee for the outdoor pool,” she notes. James Fisher urges visitors to get there as soon as possible, as “it gets packed early.”
- Located at 8425 6th Ave. Tacoma, WA 98465
- Sprayground Hours: 10:00am-8:00pm weekends (May 6-21 & September 9-24); 10:00am-8:00pm daily (May 27-September 4)
For all you could want in one location, check out Titlow Park! “Titlow Park is fantastic,” says Maggie Schauble. “Not only does it offer the spraygrounds, but it offers great walks on the beach, amazing sunsets, and one of the local favorites, Steamers, for a bite to eat!” Bring the whole family and make a day of it!
- Located at 555 Contra Costa Ave. Fircrest, WA 98466
- Open Swim Hours: May 27-June 16: 3:30pm-6:30pm Monday-Friday; June 19-September 1: 1:30pm-4:30pm daily, 5:30pm-8:30pm Monday, Wednesday, & Friday; 1:30pm-6:00pm & 6:30pm-8:30pm weekends
If you’re looking for a calm summer spot, Piper Troxler has an excellent suggestion: “Fircrest Swimming Pool! [The pool is a] fantastic, affordable place for individuals or groups to relax and sit poolside. It’s great for those who aren't looking for a lot of crazy extra toys or chaos.” With season passes available and swimming lessons for the kids, this is a great go-to community pool!
- Located at 402 E. 56th St. Tacoma, WA 98404
- Hours: 12:00pm-5:00pm (full session); 2:30pm-5:00pm (half session); 5:30pm-7:30pm (evening)
Need a refreshing place for some fun in the sun? We recommend Stewart Heights! Great pool with a curly slide and there is a Subway for snacks and lunch! The pool also features a lazy river, bubble pool, water basketball area, and more, perfect for everything from memorable parties to a simple day out of the house.
- Located at 4818 Nassau Ave. N.E. Tacoma, WA 98422
- Hours: 5:30am-8:30pm Monday-Friday; 8:00am-7:00pm Saturday; 9:00am-4:00pm Sunday
“For those in northeast Tacoma, the Center at Norpoint is incredible,” shares Piper. “It has EVERYTHING... not only can you cool off outside at the spray park or inside using the indoor pool, but there are TONS of other things to do there as well... a climbing wall, fitness classes/programs, a park... it's definitely worth checking out!” Whether you’re looking to get in shape or connect with the community, check out the Center.
PARKS & BEACHES
- Located at 5605 Owen Beach Rd. Tacoma, WA 98407
- Hours: 30 mins before sunrise - 30 mins after sunset
For some fun on the water, Alyssa Reische recommends Owen Beach: “We love to rent kayaks at Owen Beach and paddle to Vashon Island,” she shares. “Harbor seals often follow us and every so often we see a dolphin. We also love to drop a crab pot at the marina. Season opens in July!”
If staying on land is more your style, Laura Oellerich offers an alternative: “We love to do a picnic dinner at Owen Beach. Pick up some Tatanka Take-Out, bring a blanket and a beverage and watch the boats.”
- Located at 3211 Harborview Dr. Gig Harbor, WA 98335
- Hours: 5:00am-10:00pm
“For those in Gig Harbor: there's the newly renovated Skansie Brothers Park, which just reopened with a new interactive water feature,” Piper Troxler shares. “It’s much more basic than the spray parks mentioned before, but it's ideal for cooling off after a walk through downtown on a hot day or whatnot.” If you need to cool down from a day of downtown shopping and adventure, this park is the ideal hangout!
- Located at 10712 56th St. NW. Gig Harbor, WA 98335
- Hours: 8:00am-dusk
“There is plenty of beach exploration and swimming to be done at Kopachuck State Park in Gig Harbor,” says Jessica Payne. “Best time to go is on a hot day when the tide starts coming in over the warm sand, heating the water up just enough for wading and swimming. Beautiful setting directly across from Deadman's Island and the sunsets over the Olympics can't be beat!”
- Located at 6420 Chambers Creek Rd. W. University Place, WA 98467
Cool off in nature at Elsa Borgen’s recommended local getaway! “Chambers Creek in UP-Kobayashi Property—that's my absolute fave! Small and very little parking but so much fun for the kids. Bring a blanket and enjoy [a] picnic. Older kids can venture and float down the creek. So much fun!”