Creative Ways to Opt Outside This Summer

Posted on by Diana Ratsamee. This entry was posted in Being Active, Engaging Interests and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

As summer makes its way to the Pacific Northwest, the long sunny days and warm evenings can entice even the most elusive homebody out from under their dwellings. Between the social distancing measures and the dreary Seattle rain this past year, many of us are just aching to get outside. While simply witnessing Seattle in its summer glory is great enough, there are a myriad of magnificent ways we can spend our days outdoors.

Start searching for last year’s stowed away sunglasses, load up on sunscreen, and join us outside for these fun activities happening in and around campus this Summer.

Run with us on Global Running Day (June 2)

Set your own pace, chart your own path, and get moving outside by doing a fun run, marathon, or outdoor fitness class. Join The Whole U on Global Running Day June 2 and pledge to run, walk, or use mobility devices for 1 mile or more reaching a total of 2021 miles together! Global Running Day is a worldwide celebration of running that encourages everyone to get moving. It doesn’t matter how fast you run or how far you go—what’s important is that you take part, enjoy being active, and inspire others. Register for Global Running Day here. 

The Whole U also offers a number of virtual training classes and programs you can do on your own time.

Take the UW Campus Art Collection Walking Tour

Expand your mind, flex your creative muscles, and take in the amazing collection of art at the University of Washington. In addition to the collections of the Henry Art Gallery and the Burke Museum, the University of Washington is home to a collection of artwork sited on the grounds and various buildings throughout each of its campuses in Seattle, Tacoma and Bothell.

The collection is divided roughly into three conceptual groups: Works of public art commissioned by the Washington State Arts Commission/UW Public Art Commission, Gifts of fine art and, Commemorative works. Take the tour at your own leisure with the Tour Map here. 

Visit the Arboretum, Botanical Gardens and Japanese Gardens

The Arboretum is a welcome oasis on the shores of Lake Washington. Jointly managed by the University of Washington Botanic Gardens and the City of Seattle, its 230 acres contain a dynamic assortment of plants, some found nowhere else in the Northwest. Take a walk through the Arboretum and discover this beautiful living collection.

The Graham Visitors Center contains an information desk and a gift shop managed by the Arboretum Foundation. The Japanese Garden, located at the south end of the Arboretum has an entrance fee and is managed by the City of Seattle. Learn more about the Arboretum and the Gardens here. While strolling the park, consider taking a self-paced Forest Bath!

UW Arb

Cool Down at the Waterfront Activities Center (WAC)

Nestled along the shores of Union Bay, the WAC is a haven to local aquatic and plant life. From spring through fall in Seattle, kayaks and canoes pepper all throughout Union Bay. Boats can accommodate a single paddler up to a group of four. Come solo, with a group of friends, or with the family and experience a paddle around the Union Bay Natural Area admiring the wildlife such as bald eagles, osprey (also known as seahawks), and various types waterfowl.

Paddle to the Washington Arboretum and enjoy the protected waterways and hiking trails that provide spectacular animal and people watching. UW Faculty, Staff and Students receive special discounts on boat and gear rentals. Just make sure to show your Husky ID at the front desk. Schedule your visit to the WAC here.

Bike the Burke Gilman Trail

Spanning nearly 19 miles between Seattle and Bothell, the Burke-Gilman Trail is a popular trail for commuting to the University of Washington and out to the rest of Seattle. The trail, lined with local flora, make this a special experience in our region. Take your bike, or spring for a rental and cruise into Summer. Check out UW Transportation for information on bike rentals, trail maps, and biking best practices.

No matter how you choose to opt outside, you can reap the benefits of sunshine, being active, and enjoying the natural splendor the greater Seattle area offers! Share with us in the comments below your favorite ways to enjoy the summer weather.