10 Things to Do in Bellingham That You Shouldn't Miss

December 18, 2017 Nobuko Falco

The Pacific Northwest scarcely gets more peaceful than unspoiled Bellingham, a bustling city nestled in the Bellingham Bay. Nature abounds in all directions surrounding this coastal paradise. The waters of the Pacific offer opportunities for whale watching, cruising to Friday Harbor or visiting the Canadian city of Victoria. To the east, Mt. Baker beckons skiers and snowboarders to its slopes. The city itself is alive with vibrant theater, historical museums, gourmet restaurants and fine arts.
Restaurants in Bellingham

1. Whatcom Falls Park

1401 Electric Ave, Bellingham, WA 98229-2435 +1 360-778-7000
Excellent
71%
Good
24%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 761 reviews

Whatcom Falls Park

Reviewed By kwa829 - Redmond, Washington

A pleasant enough city park with some walking trails (I don't think I'd really call them "hiking trails") and some bucolic settings, with the highlight being Whatcom Falls, which is a 30-second walk from the parking lot.

BY the standards of the Pacific Northwest, the scenery is not exactly knock-your-socks-off stunning, but by the standards of a park in an urban area, it is quite nice. And if it were in Indiana or Nebraska, it'd surely be a state park (probably the most-visited one in the state), and would be featured in the state calendar every year. In beautiful Washington state, it's merely another scenic place.

The tanks at the fish hatchery are kind of interesting.

I was also impressed by how clean the bathrooms near the playground were. Normally bathrooms at parks can be a little dicey. But here they were nice.

2. Fairhaven Historic District

1100 Harris Ave, Bellingham, WA 98225-7037
Excellent
67%
Good
29%
Satisfactory
3%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 744 reviews

Fairhaven Historic District

The Historic Fairhaven Village is a charming community located on the south end of Bellingham, WA. In this turn-of-the-century village you’ll find yourself amongst locally owned and operated boutique shops, fine dining, curated art galleries, hotels, spas and outdoor activities aplenty! Surrounded by bay and wooded trails it’s the perfect launching point for a hike, cycle or kayak on the bay. The Fairhaven Village Green park, much like a town square, hosts a summer Farmer’s Market, live music, outdoor movies and annual festivals like Dirty Dan Days, Bellhaven Jazz Fest, Ski-to-Sea Fairhaven Festival, Winterfest and much more! Just minutes off I-5 it’s easy to arrive by car. There is a transportation hub within the village which houses Amtrak and Greyhound stations, Bellingham city bus, Alaska Marine Highway Ferry and San Juan Cruises. Whether it’s a day trip or a long relaxing weekend there truly is something for everyone in Fairhaven.

Reviewed By dagmarsabat - Lake Arrowhead, California

We went over to Fairhaven to "check it out" and we loved it. Cozy town with lots of fun shops to browse in and good restaurants and breweries. Had a great time!

3. Boulevard Park

470 Bayview Dr, Bellingham, WA 98225-7804
Excellent
74%
Good
22%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 226 reviews

Boulevard Park

Reviewed By 737teresam - Bellingham, Washington

Best park in Bellingham. The park runs along and over Bellingham Bay. A great view of the bay and sourounding city. Long boardwalk on the south side can be walked towards Fairhaven. The children’s play area is pirate themed and has great climbing area and slide. Woods Coffee on premises is a great place to grab a cup of coffee and pastry. Here you can sit inside where there is a fireplace or outside on patio. There is also a walk up window for outdoor ordering. There is also a good walking trail at north end of the park. Parking can be challenging in the summer, as there are a lot of visitors. Great place for families and singles. Dogs on leash are welcome. Many benches for sitting.

4. Mount Baker Theatre

104 N Commercial St, Bellingham, WA 98225-4408 +1 360-733-5793
Excellent
72%
Good
23%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 144 reviews

Mount Baker Theatre

Reviewed By educationdoc - Bellingham, Washington

Any shows or concerts that you attend in this venue will be a treat. The Mt. Baker Theater is a beautifully restored 1927 architectural treasure, listed on the register of National Historic Places (be sure to look up at the art deco domed ceiling. The theatre is dedicated to showcasing some of the best live performing artists on both the professional and community levels. The Whatcom Symphony performs here, and the 3 PM Sunday matinee is among our favorite way to spend a nice rainy afternoon in Bellingham.

5. Lake Padden Park

4882 South Samish Way, Bellingham, WA 98229-3444 +1 360-778-7000
Excellent
68%
Good
29%
Satisfactory
2%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 236 reviews

Lake Padden Park

This 900 acre park offers several miles of walking and biking trails.

Reviewed By Fancyfree99 - Bellingham, Washington

This park is a gem. Hiking the 3-mile trail around the lake is a treat for the senses. The aroma of cedar, the softness of the forest floor, the quietness under the trees, and the ever-changing reflections in the lake. It's enticing for dogs, too: there are leash-free trails as well as a fenced dog park. There's also a playground, picnic areas, and plenty of ducks to watch. To avoid the crowds, go on a weekday.

6. Spark Museum of Electrical Invention

1312 Bay St, Bellingham, WA 98225-4322 +1 360-738-3886
Excellent
60%
Good
28%
Satisfactory
11%
Poor
1%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 159 reviews

Spark Museum of Electrical Invention

The Spark Museum of Electrical Invention offers an exciting and educational experience for audiences of all ages. Compelling, interactive exhibits spanning four centuries of scientific achievement and cultural heritage are featured in a world-class collection of unique objects including the giant "MegaZapper" Tesla Coil which produces massive lightning bolts! Spark Museum displays the inventions and innovations that changed the course of human history. Come check it out!

Reviewed By misopiso88 - Seattle, Washington

We were visiting Bellingham for the weekend and happened to be near the Spark Museum at the start time of the electricity show so we decided to go. So fun! Kids can participate and everyone can have a chance to experience the lightening globe. Look...MoreThanks for your review!

7. Chuckanut Drive

State Highway 11, Bellingham, WA
Excellent
66%
Good
25%
Satisfactory
4%
Poor
4%
Terrible
1%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 131 reviews

Chuckanut Drive

Chuckanut Drive is located between Bow and Fairhaven (Bellingham), WA. Built in 1909, as an original scenic roadway, above Chuckanut Bay.

Reviewed By chuck h - Jacksonville, Florida

our family took the chuckanut drive from bellingham to the south. vey enjoyable to just slow down and enjoy the view. toward the end there is a small little cafe called the Farm to Market bakery. You must stop and try one of their bakery items. Everything is made on site and it was awesome.

8. Nooksack Falls

Bellingham, WA +1 360-599-2714
Excellent
51%
Good
40%
Satisfactory
9%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 127 reviews

Nooksack Falls

Reviewed By Rainier72 - Lynnwood, Washington

Nooksack Falls is a very easy waterfall to get to by car and by foot. Just a short drive on a dirt road off the Mount Baker Highway leads to a small parking lot. Near the trailhead is a sign with the history of the falls and the area. It's a very short walk down to the falls. A bit tricky doing down and rockier near the fence, but well worth the effort. The falls were spectacular especially being spring and all the snow the area got this winter. In spite of the fence, you can still get great pictures of the falls and gorge below. West of Nooksack Falls and near Glacier by the bridge is a small parking lot for the Horseshoe Bend hike. If you're looking for a very easy walk along a river, this is a great place. The Nooksack River was pretty full and made for even more of a spectacular walk. We didn't walk the whole path. Just about a mile or so until we got to the bench by the river. Nice place to sit and enjoy the power of the river. The part of the trail we took was mainly flat, but I hear it may go up more after the spot we stopped at. If you're looking for a great place to escape to and beat the heat, both Nooksack Falls and Horseshoe Bend are both great options.

9. Larrabee State Park

Bellingham, WA +1 360-902-8844
Excellent
51%
Good
30%
Satisfactory
13%
Poor
4%
Terrible
2%
Overall Ratings

4 based on 211 reviews

Larrabee State Park

Reviewed By misopiso88 - Seattle, Washington

If you are camping, this may be a great place, but if you are just visiting for a few hours, it is a pretty small park so unless you are going to use the beach, I am not sure it is worth the entrance fee. There are several other beautiful picnic locations along the coast that are free and easier from a parking perspective.

10. Interurban Trail

Bellingham, WA
Excellent
70%
Good
30%
Satisfactory
0%
Poor
0%
Terrible
0%
Overall Ratings

4.5 based on 62 reviews

Interurban Trail

A 5.5-mile biking trail.

Reviewed By Cliff S - Boston, Massachusetts

What's cool about this trail is that you can enjoy a nice, relatively flat stroll along a creek and through woods that are nestled in a residential area. If you follow the trail far enough, you'll begin to ascend through the forest and eventually you'll cross Chuckanut Drive. Once you do that, you can access Teddy Bear Cove, which is a neat little beach on the bay. What a gift this trail is for Bellingham residents.

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