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Tacoma, Washington: The City of Destiny

Tacoma, Washington: The City of Destiny

Cedric Thomas
Aug 22, 2022

Tacoma, Washington, also known as the "City of Destiny," is a bustling city located in Pierce County, Washington. With a population of over 200,000 people, Tacoma offers a unique mix of urban and natural attractions that make it an ideal place to live, work, and play.

One of the most striking features of Tacoma is its stunning waterfront location on Puget Sound. The city's proximity to the water offers a wealth of outdoor activities such as boating, kayaking, and fishing. 

Visitors and locals can enjoy the Ruston Way waterfront promenade which boasts a variety of restaurants, bars, and cafes. This popular destination offers stunning views of Mount Rainier and the Olympic Mountains.

In addition to its natural beauty, Tacoma offers a thriving arts and culture scene. The city is home to several museums, including the Tacoma Art Museum and the Museum of Glass, which showcases glass art from around the world. 

Tacoma Arts Museum 

Photo via 365 Traveler

Another one of the six museums in Tacoma's downtown Museum district is the Tacoma Arts Museum. Referenced as an anchor in the city's downtown scene, the Tacoma Arts Museum is a gathering space that connects diverse crowds of people through various works of art. 

Its central location makes it easy to access regardless of where you are in Tacoma. And what's even more remarkable is that it's right across the street from the University of Washington, making it easily accessible to students who may wish to visit. 

This museum is unique because it houses over 5,000 pieces—yes, you read it right, I said more than 5,000 works of art. How impressive is that? But it's also important to note that the museum doesn't just stop at art. 

They're also known for their café, The Relish Café, they host many social events for residents of Tacoma, and they even hold concerts there, making the Tacoma Arts Museum one of the most stand-out museums in all of Tacoma. 

Tacoma Arts Museum is at 1701 Pacific Avenue, Tacoma, WA 98402. Make sure to stop by on your next visit to Tacoma. They are open Wednesday, Friday, Saturday, and Sunday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, and Thursdays from 10:00 am to 8:00 pm. Every Thursday from 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm, admission is free.

Washington State History Museum 

Photo via Move to Tacoma

    The Washington State History Museum is the place where "fun and fascination" collide. Through the use of interactive exhibitions, you can explore much of Washington's impact throughout the world. This museum offers an array of temporary and permanent exhibits. 

Some of what you can expect are digital exhibits such as the Dr. Martin Luther King exhibit, which chronicles his visit to Washington in 1961. And live presentations such as the "Washington: My Home" exhibit, which details how many migrated to and decided to make Washington D.C. their home through oral histories, photos,  and various artifacts. 

Something unique about this exhibit is that it has a separate portion entitled "Step into my shoes," In this area, they have an array of shoes that either corresponds to the story or the person who wore them in the story. But that's not what makes it unique. 

Instead, according to their website,  you can "visit the Migration Station, and note your answers to questions about immigration." Then, your answers are uploaded for the world to see. You can even "place a disk on the world map to show where your family came from," making you an active part of the exhibit. 

     So if you're dying to know, "what's so special about Washington?" Then the Washington State History Museum is the place to be. It sits at 1911 Pacific Avenue, Tacoma, WA 98402. 

They are open from Tuesday-Sunday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. And on the third Thursday of each month, they extend their hours from 10:00 am to 8:00 pm. And even more remarkable is that they offer free admission from 3:00 pm to 8:00 pm every third Thursday.

The Great Outdoors of Tacoma Washington 

For live entertainment, visitors can enjoy performances at the historic Pantages Theater or the Tacoma Dome, a venue that hosts a variety of concerts and sporting events throughout the year.

For those who love the great outdoors, Tacoma offers a variety of parks and green spaces to explore. Point Defiance Park is one of the most popular destinations, featuring over 700 acres of trails, gardens, and beaches. 

The park is also home to the Point Defiance Zoo & Aquarium, which houses over 9,000 animals from around the world.

Deemed "A Nature Wonderland"

Photo via 365 Traveler

      Believe it or not, Tacoma, Washington, is the place to be if you're a nature lover. In short, Tacoma is described as a "Nature Wonderland" for many reasons. One is that the city sits right along Puget Sound, a collection of islands, channels, inlets, and estuaries, stretching over 2,500 miles. 

As a result,  Tacoma Wa has become home to some of the most diverse sea creatures. Tourists and residents gather along the bank to sightsee, often spotting Orca Whales, various types of Salmon, and even Seals, to name a few. In addition to the sea creatures along the bank, there's still a vast amount of sea and wildlife to discover in Tacoma, Washington. 

Moreover, Tacoma is known for its rich history and its role in shaping the Pacific Northwest region. The city was founded in the late 19th century and quickly became a major industrial hub, with a booming logging and shipping industry. Today, visitors can explore the city's history by visiting the Washington State History Museum or taking a walking tour of the city's historic neighborhoods.

One of the unique aspects of Tacoma is its diverse population, which has contributed to the city's vibrant culture and cuisine. Visitors can enjoy a variety of international foods, from Mexican to Vietnamese to Ethiopian. Tacoma's food scene is constantly evolving, with new restaurants and food trucks popping up all the time.

The City of Endless Possibilities 

Live Like  A Local

Photo via Travel Tacoma

For those of you in search of "regular" or "everyday things" to do while in Tacoma, you know, things `that aren't so "touristy" but still entertaining,  I would suggest visiting Dorky's Bar Arcade. Dorky's is an 80's style video game arcade at 754 Pacific Ave, Tacoma, WA 98402. 

They are open six days a week. On Sundays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays, they are open from noon to midnight, and Fridays and Saturdays from noon to 2:00 am. You can take game night to a new level at Dorky's, playing classics such as Mario Cart, Pin Ball, and Mortal Combat for only a quarter. 

You can also indulge in classic bar staples such as Pizza and Beer. And $2 Tacos on Tuesdays.  

Photo via Only In Your State

Dorky's is the go-to spot for game night with friends or roommates. And for those looking for adult-only fun, Dorky's is conveniently 21, and up after 9:00 pm, so you can rest assured that you're not racing to the Popeye machine before someone's 12-year-old beats you to it because this arcade will surely bring out your inner child. 

Tower Lanes: unlimited Fun For All 

Photo via Tower Lanes Website

  Tower Lanes is the place to be for those of you looking for fun at any time of day. Tower Lanes is an entertainment venue featuring activities such as bowling, billiards, and even mini golf virtually 24 hours a day. 

Perfect for a first date or even a night out after work with friends. You Know? One of those nights, you want to have some good, clean, fun—and a drink too. 

And the sweet part is, they offer group rates on various activities such as mini golf. Furthermore,  if you'd like to showcase your competitive side, consider signing up yourself and your crew for their bowling or mini golf tournaments to amplify the fun. 

Photo via Tower Lanes Website

To make a reservation, be sure to call ahead. 

Be sure to visit 6323 6th Avenue Tacoma, WA 98406, and let the "good times roll." 

Eat Like A Local

An easy way to get your hands on some of the diverse cuisines within Tacoma, Washington's city limits, is to visit Tollefson Plaza at 1548 Pacific Ave, Tacoma, WA 98402, every Wednesday. Why Wednesday, you ask? 

Well, this is where they host: Food truck Wednesdays. And from 11:00 am – 3:00 pm, you can get your hands on cuisines from some of the city's best mobile food units. So if you're ever in the area on a Wednesday, bring your wallet and appetite with you. 

If you're looking for a unique shopping experience, Tacoma has several districts that offer a variety of options. The Proctor District, for example, features a variety of boutique shops, antique stores, and specialty food shops. 

The Sixth Avenue District, on the other hand, is known for its eclectic mix of vintage clothing stores, record shops, and dive bars.

Finally, Tacoma is also a great place to raise a family. The city has a variety of excellent schools, both public and private, and offers a range of family-friendly activities and events throughout the year. 

From the Children's Museum of Tacoma to the annual Tacoma Film Festival, there is always something for families to enjoy together. Additionally, Tacoma hosts several farmers markets throughout the year, offering visitors the opportunity to sample fresh, locally-grown produce and artisanal products.

The City of Destiny

white and brown concrete building near mountain during daytime

In conclusion, Tacoma, Washington is a dynamic and diverse city that offers a range of attractions and experiences. Whether you're a first-time visitor or a long-time resident, there is always something new and exciting to discover in the City of Destiny.

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