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Bellingham Bucket List: 100 Things to do in and around Bellingham… with kids

You’re going to find out, very quickly, that I’m a list maker. I can’t help myself.

One of my first breaks as a writer was writing lists like this one for Red Tricycle. It started with a long list of 50 things to do with your kids in Seattle during the summer and quickly evolved into my seasonal must-have list for families, giving them an easy-to-reference list to grab an idea from on those days that call for an adventure. They were my signature series on Red Tricycle Seattle and Portland for a couple of years and I absolutely loved writing them… and checking the adventures off of the list with my own family.

Now that we’re in Bellingham, with so many new places to explore, a list seems like the best place to start.

I’d love for you to bookmark this page to use as a reference or pin it to your Pinterest boards (That’s where I keep half of my mind! I’ve pinned it here for you to find easily.). We’ll be adding more items to the list as we discover more fun things to do and places to visit in and around Bellingham and as we check them off, I’ll include details of our adventures for you to see and read. There will always be a little Bellingham Bucket List button on the right side of bellingFAM too. (Do you see it over there?)

First things first… I need your suggestions! Leave them for me in the comments section below, on our Facebook page or send me an email. I want to hear what you love to do with your kids in and around Bellingham (the big and the small!) and what’s on your local bucket list.

Let’s make this list grow!

NOTE: This list has been updated with THINGS TO DO and PLACES TO VISIT and EVENTS TO ATTEND with kids in and around Bellingham. If you’re looking for a great place to eat with kids, please stay tuned for a bellingFAM KID-FRIENDLY RESTAURANT GUIDE.

Check back often! Details on our adventures are coming this week! And, keep those suggestions coming…

** On our Summer 2014 adventures list
Bold items ones that are complete. 

1. Explore the tide flats at Birch Bay. **
2. Finish the summer reading program at the library. **
3. Visit the Whatcom Museum.
4. Explore the arboretum at WWU. **
5. Explore the WWU campus and outdoor art.
6. Visit the Bellingham Railway Museum.
7. A beach day at Larrabee. **
8. Camp at Silver Lake. ** (Note to self: Reservations, ASAP!)
9. Go sledding/play in the snow at Mt. Baker.
10. Hike at Mt. Baker in the summer. **
11. Have beers while the kids play at Perch & Play.
12. Ride that little train in the mall.
13. Walk from downtown to Fairhaven on the trails. **
14. Throw rocks in the water at Boulevard Park. **
15. Take the trail at the end of Lake Whatcom as far as it will go. **
16. Ice cream at the dairy. **
17. Walk in the Junior Ski-to-Sea parade.
18. Check out Semiahmoo. **
19. Explore the Interurban Trail. **
20. Watch the sunset from Clark’s Point. **
21. Play on every elementary school playground in Bellingham. **
22. Spend an afternoon on the patio at Kulshan Brewery.
23. Summer concerts and dinner picnics at Elizabeth Park. **
24. The Fair. Enough said. Worthy of a list of its own. 
25. Watch football games for all three Bellingham high schools.
26. Hike to Fragrance Lake. **
27. Participate in the All Comer Track Meets at Civic Field. ** (Every Monday night!)
28. Check out the Old Settlers celebrations in Ferndale. **
29. Hit the ice at the Sportsplex.
30. Spend 4th of July in Blaine.
31. Find Nooksack Falls. **
32. Hit up all of the u-pick berry farms: strawberry picking at Boxx Berry Farm. **
33. Find a sweet spot to watch the Ski-to-Sea Parade. (we did this! post coming soon!)
34. Visit the Jansen Art Center in Lynden.
35. Spend more than 5 minutes at the touch tanks (Marine Life Center).
36. Follow that trail that goes along the stream at Million Smiles Park. **
37. Discover all of the little public beaches along Lake Whatcom. **
38. Visit Pioneer Park. **
39. Check out Back to Bellingham weekend. (we did this! post coming soon!)
40. A day visiting all of the best spots in Fairhaven. By foot. **
41. A day visiting all of the best spots downtown. By foot. **
42. Take bikes around Lake Padden. **
43. Paint the big rock on I-5 Northbound.
44. Spend a rainy afternoon at CreativiTea.
45. Catch the outdoor movies in Fairhaven. **
46. Get our buzz on at SPARK.
47. Watch the sunset from the top of the Parkade. **
48. Visit the Big Rock Garden. **
49. Visit the Fairhaven Spray Park and the Cornwall Spray Park, all in one day. ** (Now open!)
50. Explore Tenant Lake in Ferndale, including the boardwalk and viewing tower. **
51. Get some fresh and local goodies at the Bellingham Farmer’s Market. **
52. Go rollerskating in Lynden.
53. Watch the ferry depart for Alaska. **
54. Jump and slide our hearts out at Jump Around Fun Zone.
55. Cross the border at the Peace Arch.
56. Find Locust Beach. **
57. Take the ferry to Lummi Island for a day of exploring. **
58. Explore Hovander and visit the animals. **
59. Fly kites at Zuanich Park.
60. Take the kids geocaching. **
61. Hula hoop at Boundary Bay.
62. Visit Bellewood Acres for cider and pie.
63. Freeze our toes off at a polar bear plunge.
64. Get dinner ingredients at Joe’s Garden. **
65. Find a favorite trail off of Chuckanut. **
66. Cheer on the Bellingham Bells. **
67. Head to the Birch Bay Waterslides. **
68. Find somewhere to go mini golfing. **
69. Hit up the bowling alley.
70. Watch an IMAX movie at the theater. **

Have a suggestion of something to add to this list?
Leave a comment or email us at


72 thoughts on “Bellingham Bucket List: 100 Things to do in and around Bellingham… with kids

  1. Pingback: Bellingham Bucket List #22: Spend an afternoon on the patio at Kulshan Brewing Co. | bellingFAM

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  3. Pingback: Bellingham Bucket List #44: Spend a rainy afternoon at CreativiTea | bellingFAM

  4. Pingback: Kid-friendly restaurants in Bellingham: Suggestions needed! | bellingFAM

  5. vvanault

    Hike Oyster Dome (maybe not the whole thing with them at first; there is a trail head from the Alger exit (south) that is about halfway)


  6. Pingback: Revisiting the Bellingham Bucket List for summer | bellingFAM

  7. Michael Daughters

    Frisbee golf at Cornwall park
    Splash park at Cornwall park and fairhaven park
    Bike the interurban trail
    Fish in Whatcom falls park
    Mountain bike at Galbraith mt
    Run around lake padden
    Explore the tide pools at larabee park
    Ferry ride and bike around Lopez Island (not free, but cheap)
    Walk through LaConner


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  14. Anonymous

    Visit the Bellingham Farmers Market (Wednesday in Fairhaven or Saturday downtown), have lunch, pick up ingredients for dinner and enjoy the entertainment. Fresh Local Music is a free concert series that takes place every Wednesday during the Summer at the Market. Also, kids can sell their handmade or grown items the last Saturday of each month or every Wednesday through July and August through the Kids Vending Days program!


  15. Pingback: Bellingham Bucket List #24: The Lynden Fair | bellingFAM

  16. aicragyram

    You make me miss home :)

    Visit art studios in October during the Whatcom artist studio tour.
    trick or treating in the Columbia neighborhood is a must
    fairhaven outdoor summer movie nights
    have white chocolate mouse cheesecake at the colifon caffe in fairhaven
    and the best whiskey crab soup at the cliff house
    larabee park
    Whatcom falls park in the fall is absolutely beautiful (any time of year really) check out the fish hatchery while you’re there
    see the salmon run at the end of Whatcom creek in old town.
    Farmer’s market is a must!
    best coffee is the black drop and authentically Bellingham.
    Rocket donuts!
    beer at kulshan brewery
    the list goes on!


  17. Mr. Rifugio

    Well I happened upon your lists of things to do in Bellingham. I love it and wanted to invite you to visit our great family restaurant in beautiful Deming WA. called Rifugio’s it means refuge and it is our place to seek it with great events and Italian food and Cinnamon Rolls, Scones, Pies (savory and sweet) & pasta.


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