Green Lake Park is undoubtedly one of the most popular recreational spots in the city, and there is a reason why: go there for a morning with the kiddo or on a weekend with the whole fam, and the possibilities are endless.


Start by cruising around The Path (the 2.8 mile loop around the lake) and use your transportation of choice: push a stroller or jogger, ferry the kids on bikes or let them ride their own, or take a leisurely stroll.   If you are lucky enough to get a parking spot near the Green Lake Community Center, you’ll be close to the awesome playground that has a great mix of equipment for both toddlers and bigger kids. (Don’t forget to check out the indoor play space for infants and toddlers within the Community Center; it’s open Monday to Saturday and has a $2 drop-in fee.) Bring a ball to play on a nearby playing field, or sit by the lake and watch rowers, kayakers and paddle boarders.

When you’re done with the park, walk the few blocks to Green Lake’s business district, where can treat yourselves to a chocolate-dipped fortune cookie at Chocolati Café. Better yet, head over to Bottega Italiana Gelato to sample the delightful pear gelato.  Next stop is Mockingbird Books, where the staff is super-knowledgeable and you can grab a latte while the Little’s browse the picture books or listen to story time, which is at 11 am Monday thru Saturday.  When you’re hungry for lunch, go next door to the kid-friendly (and recently remodeled) Rosita’s Mexican Grill , where no one can ever get enough of the homemade tortillas.

-Kavita Varma-White