A car drives from one of the twin suspension bridges that make up the Tacoma Narrow Bridge at dusk with a light blue and pink sky in Tacoma, Washington

Work and Play: Bleisure Travel in Tacoma

A car drives from one of the twin suspension bridges that make up the Tacoma Narrow Bridge at dusk with a light blue and pink sky in Tacoma, Washington

Work and Play: Bleisure Travel in Tacoma

Tacoma, Washington is a vibrant city with plenty to explore. From museums to Puget Sound, here are some sights to see on your next visit.


Tacoma, Washington, is a vibrant city with breathtaking views of Mount Rainier and Puget Sound. Home to several world-class museums, it boasts a mix of cultural attractions, outdoor recreation, and great local cuisine, making it an ideal destination for business and leisure. In between meetings, immerse yourself in the best the “City of Destiny” has to offer. Who says you can’t mix business with leisure?

Downtown Tacoma

If you’re visiting for business, there’s no doubt you’ll find yourself downtown where cultural attractions are around every corner. The revitalized urban core of the city is an eclectic mix of history and modern culture. Hop on the free Link Light Rail to visit the world-renowned Museum of Glass. From the rail’s stop at 19th and Pacific, take a walk across the stunning Chihuly Bridge of Glass, a destination in its own right. Grab a bite along the rail route at the popular Harmon Brewery & Eatery, the award-winning Pacific Grill, or the international food court of local vendors at Freighthouse Station, a century-old landmark.

America’s Car Museum

Have more than a few hours to explore? LeMay – America’s Car Museum, makes no excuses for America’s love affair with automobiles. You don’t need to be a car buff to enjoy the collection of 250 cars that span a century of technology. The museum has gems like a 1913 Daimler Type 20 Touring, a 1953 Citroen 2CV, and a 1984 Flintmobile. The 9-acre campus also offers rotating exhibits, racing simulators, a memorabilia shop, and its own café.

Active Recreation

If you want to ditch the business attire for the day and explore nature, you’re in one of the best spots to do so – Tacoma is a mecca for outdoor recreation. If you have time to spare during the warm season, get a rejuvenating adrenaline boost by going parasailing or zip lining. A 30-minute drive takes you to iFLY in Tukwila, where you can experience skydiving from the comfort — and safety — of the indoors. For a water view of Puget Sound, rent a boat at Point Defiance Marina, or take a local cruise with Destiny Harbor Tours.

Scenic Hikes

Clear your head and enjoy one of the many scenic hikes around the city. The 700-acre Point Defiance Park has breathtaking beaches, flower gardens, trails in old-growth forest, and a zoo and aquarium. This unique destination receives more than 3 million visitors a year. Other easy trails include Chambers Bay Loop and Ruston Way waterfront, a paved, urban trail with panoramic views of the Olympic Mountains and Commencement Bay.

Large rocks and small pebbles make up a rocky beach in the foreground, with Mount Rainier in the background and a clear blue sky in Washington
Source: Shutterstock

Gig Harbor

If you want to hit the water, you won’t have to go far. Take a short, scenic drive to Gig Harbor across the world-famous Tacoma Narrows Bridge, the fifth-longest suspension bridge in the U.S. This quaint community, named one of Smithsonian magazine’s best small towns in America, was once known as a “sleepy fishing village.” Stroll the downtown area for views of Mount Rainier and to visit art galleries. Rent a kayak or standup paddleboard at Lee’s SUP. To hang out with the locals, head to 7 Seas Brewing, Tides Tavern, or Morso Wine Bar.

The bright blue waters of the Port of Tacoma in the foreground and Mount Ranier in the background against a blue sky in Tacoma, Washington
Source: Shutterstock

Do you have a favorite spot in Tacoma? Share photos and tips from your travels on Instagram.

Travel