Outdoor recreation in Bellingham
Bellingham has many opportunities to explore what the city has to offer. Feel the sunshine and fresh air with activities such as boating and hiking. Bring a friend along to the many shops, restaurants and various ways to explore the city. Here are a few activities and places you can explore to find some tranquility and photo opportunities.
Community Boating Center
The Community Boating Center in Fairhaven offers paddleboards, row boats, kayaks and a variety of nautical classes. Rates are affordable, and the staff welcomes people of all experience levels at this certified marina.
“The CBC is an amazing place for families and for those who want to learn more about the waters,” Operations Manager Erica Reed said.
Being a Western alumni, Reed is familiar with Bellingham, which helped grow her appreciation for aquatic and small boat recreation.
She started off as a sea kayaking student at the Community Boating Center, then she started to volunteer before joining the crew back in 2015. Ever since, Reed said she loves “to help locals and engage others in aquatic education.”
Lakewood Watersports Facility
Located on Lake Whatcom, this boathouse gives the public access to many small watercraft, such as paddleboards and canoes. There are also hiking trails that surround the area, picnic tables and rope challenge courses. Each summer, sailing courses are available through Western.
South of Bellingham, you can walk on a five-mile round trip hike at Oyster Dome. It features a vast open area, birds flying among the clouds, the line of trees from afar and blue water on a sunny day.
Teddy Bear Cove
Head over to Chuckanut Drive and find Teddy Bear Cove. Sit back, skip some rocks and watch the sunset. The closer you get to the tunnel, the windier and louder it gets.
Not too far away from campus, you can find plenty of shops and entertainment at your disposal in the Fairhaven Historic District. Enjoy music, movies and gelato with your friends and family. Fairhaven is a small village surrounded by trees and water and is packed with things to do.
Bellingham Farmers Market
It’s not the biggest market, but it offers a lot for the public. Fresh vegetables, berries, flowers and bread are just a few of the things you can buy. It’s a great way to start your weekend as it is only about a mile away from campus on Saturday mornings.
South Bay Trail
Take a stroll on the South Bay Trail along the boardwalk near Boulevard Park. It offers beautiful ocean views, coffee shops nearby and a long, scenic trail. It’s a popular area for visitors and residents with its play area for children, picnic tables and sunsets.
“I like to take my workouts outside, and I always find myself running around this area,” junior Enrique Gomez said. “The sunsets are amazing and there’s always lots of people around.”
Gomez runs all around the city, finding new trails, parks and landmarks. He finds himself coming to this location when the sun shines because he says it is relaxing.
“I don’t mind stopping at a bench to catch my breath,” Gomez said. “I just lose myself and clear my thoughts easily coming here [more] than anywhere else.”
Sehome Hill Arboretum
About half a mile away from campus, take a nice, comfortable walk in the Sehome Hill Arboretum. Listen to the trees rattling, the birds chirping and the leaves crunching under your shoes.