Summer is HERE in Seattle, and it feels great! We’ve got hot temps and lots of sunshine, and since my preschooler is done with school next week, I’m trying to plan lots of outdoor activities. Here are eight of our favorite places to go to cool off during the summer.

8 Spots to Cool Off in Seattle and Summer Water Fun for Kids

Summer fun at Alki Beach - 8 Spots to Cool Off in Seattle and Summer Water Fun for Kids

1. Alki Beach. West Seattle’s coastline is famous for its boardwalk and sandy beaches — it almost feels like a Southern California beach on a busy Saturday. We love to ride or rent bikes along the path, build sandcastles and play in the water. Grab lunch from one of the cafes or venture into downtown West Seattle for the most delicious twice-baked croissants of your life.

8 Spots to Cool Off in Seattle and Summer Water Fun for Kids

2. Crossroads Park Splash Pad. This is an awesome splash pad that’s worth driving to Bellevue for. They’ve got a giant orca whale, and other sea creatures to climb up and slide down on, lots of water spraying equipment, and fun splash toys to play with. There’s also a ton of grassy lawn space for picnics and a nice playground.

International Fountain, Seattle Center - photo credit, istockphoto - 8 Spots to Cool Off in Seattle and Summer Water Fun for Kids

Seattle Center International Fountain | istockphoto

3. International Fountain, Seattle Center. This fountain is as old as the Space Needle; both were built for the 1962 World’s Fair! It’s a silver dome sculpture that sprays massive jets of water high up into the air — fun to run around and get super wet, right in the shadow of the Needle.

4. Lynnwood Recreation Center and Pool. Some days it’s just too darn hot to go outside, so why not cool off indoors? (Also a fun destination in the winter because of the heated waters!) The Lynnwood Recreation Center and Pool feature a lazy river, water slides, a family hot tub and a water playground. Kids ages 2-12 are $4.25; adults are $5.25.

5. Grass Lawn Park. Another great park with fun water features — this one is in Redmond, and it’s huge. It has a variety of playgrounds, picnic areas, trails, and, of course, a popular splash pad.

8 Spots to Cool Off in Seattle and Summer Water Fun for Kids

6. Juanita Beach. This public Lake Washington beach in Kirkland has it all — kayak and paddleboard rentals, a playground, a wide and roomy beach and a great view of Seattle. Of all the Lake Washington beaches we visit, this one feels the least crowded.

7. Tukwila Splash & Spray Park. If you’re south of Seattle, this is a great spot to check out on a hot day. It’s close to the Tukwila Community Center and has all the spray fountains your kids have ever dreamed of.

8. Green Lake. This tiny lake, right next door to the Woodland Park Zoo, is great to swim in any time. Bring bikes or scooters and ride around the lake path, or stop at the north end of the lake to check out the Wading Pool — it’s the biggest in Seattle! You can also grab a treat at one of the nearby bakeries and restaurants.

There are our 8  Top Spots to Cool Off in Seattle and Cool Summer Fun for KidsAre we missing any? Share your favorite Seattle cooling-off spots in the comments!