Juanita Beach Park is on Lake Washington in Seattle, just 5 minutes north of downtown Kirkland.
This stunning beach park has 1,000 feet of shoreline, with a sandy swimming beach, kayak and paddleboard rentals, and a fabulous new playground. The bathhouse also sells snacks and drinks.
History: Juanita Beach Park was settled in 1877 by pioneers Dorr and Eliza Forbes, who ran the local mill. Their home still stands today near the baseball field (11829 97th Ave NE).
In the 1920s and 30s this park became a popular beach resort for Seattle families. This is because a sandy beach suddenly appeared below the original mudflats in 1917, when the lake's level dropped by 9 feet after the opening of the Ballard Locks. The resort had a two-story bathhouse with dressing rooms downstairs, and a dance hall upstairs. There were also boat and cabin rentals.
Eventually the resort was sold to King County in 1956, and finally came under the ownership of the City of Kirkland in 2002. In 2020, Juanita Beach Park had some fantastic upgrades, like a new bathhouse with a kiosk and kayak/paddleboard rentals, two new picnic shelters, and a modern playground.
Parking: There are two large parking lots at Juanita Beach Park.
10 best things to do at Juanita Beach Park
1. Swimming beach
The sandy, seasonal swimming beach attracts the summer crowds, with a U-shaped concrete dock encircling the entire area. Keep an eye on the water quality reports, because there are frequent beach closures in summer.
2. Kayak and paddleboard rentals
Dual or tandem kayaks and paddleboards can be rented from the Juanita Beach Park Bathhouse, and directly launched from Jaunita Beach Park.
3. Modern playground
The new playground was constructed in 2020, and is a big highlight of Juanita Beach Park. The turfed playground has a swing set, slides and climbing towers, with distant water views.
Stop by the kiosk at the Juanita Beach Park bathhouse, for snacks, drinks and ice-cream.
5. Concrete pier
Follow the concrete pier over the lake, for incredible views. The semi-circular pier encloses the entire swimming area at Juanita Beach Park.
6. Picnic shelters & tables
Reserve one of two big picnic shelters for a group gathering, or use one of the many picnic tables at Juanita Bay Park.
7. Wetlands trail
Follow the secluded wetlands trail along the north end of Juanita Beach Park, with viewpoints overlooking Juanita Creek.
8. Volleyball courts
The two sandy volleyball courts are near the entrance to the concrete pier at the beach, and are drop-in only.
9. Juanita Farmers Market
The Juanita Farmers Market runs in summer, with homemade goods, artisan wares, and delicious fresh food.
10. Baseball, softball and tennis
This 22-acre park has two baseball and softball fields, and drop-in only tennis courts. These are all located on the north side of Juanita Drive.
There are restrooms at the new, modern bathhouse at Juanita Beach Park, with outdoor showers in summer: