Seattle Parks and Recreation Jesús Aguirre, Superintendent
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Seattle Parks and Recreation

Woodland Park

Address: 1000 N 50th St, 98103 (Map It)
Seattle Parks and Recreation Information:
(206) 684-4075 | Contact Us TTY Phone: (206) 233-1509

Click to skip down to:

  • Dog Off Leash Area
  • Decorative Fountain
  • Lawn Bowling
  • Picnic Sites
  • Rental Facility
  • Restrooms
  • Skatepark
  • Tennis Court (Outdoor)
  • Tennis Lights
  • Paths
  • Woods
  • Restrooms (ADA Compliant)
  • Play Area (ADA Compliant)
  • Soccer
  • Baseball/Softball
  • Track
  • Horseshoe Pits
  • BMX Dirt Jumps


4 a.m. - 11:30 p.m.


Woodland Park is an exciting, multipurpose park and recreation space just southwest of Green Lake and north of the Fremont district. It is separated into two parts by Aurora Avenue.

The side west of Aurora is largely occupied by the Woodland Park Zoo, but also includes some picnic space, a formal rose garden, a few open spaces, and a play area for children.

East of Aurora, just south of Green Lake Park, the park is an ideal spot for picnics with reservable picnic areas, barbecues, woods, pleasant grassy hills and pathways. It is also one of the citys most active hubs for sports and recreation, including walkway paths, several playfields, tennis courts, lawn bowling, horseshoe pits, a skatepark, and a large, wooded dog off-leash area.

Acreage: 90.9


Guy Phinney, who built the first industry on Lake Washington, invested $40,000 in 1889 to develop his residence estate, "Woodland Park". Woodland Park was to have a small zoo near his residence in the southwest portion of the park, a bandstand and paths through the woods to Green Lake (where Phinney built a bathing beach and a boathouse), picnic grounds, and two ballfields. Phinney then built a trolley line from the southwest corner to the Fremont line to Seattle.

In 1900 the City Council bought the park from the estate of Mr. Phinney, in spite of vigorous protests over the price - $100,000 - and complaints that it was "too far out of town"! Another trolley line had been built to connect Seattle with the east and north side of Green Lake, and by 1904 it was extended on around the lake and through Woodland Park on a trestle.

In 1903/1910 the Olmsted Bros. included the development of Woodland Park in their comprehensive parks plan but the location of Aurora Avenue in 1932 voided their concept of Zoo expansion in that area. This was protested in vain and a beautiful forest area was removed - some trees were transplanted at Gilman and Wallingford Playgrounds. Dirt from the excavation was used to fill at the south end of Green Lake. The U. S. Army used "Lower Woodland" Park as a barracks site from 1941-1944. (Adapted from the files of Don Sherwood, 1916-1981, Park Historian.)

Today the park is home to the Woodland Park Zoo and the Rose Garden. The Zoo is recognized as one of the best Zoos in the world, and houses nearly 300 species of wildlife. Adjacent to the Woodland Park Zoo, the Rose Garden is one of only two dozen certified American Rose Test Gardens in the United States. At its picturesque best from May through August, the garden displays new rose hybrids before they become available to amateur rose enthusiasts. Admission to the Rose Garden is free.

To learn more about Seattle Parks and Recreation, including historic landmarks, military base reuse, and the Sherwood History Files, view our Park History.


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Major Maintenance
- Skatepark
- Lower Woodland Lighting Replacement
- Ballfield Minor Capitol Improvements

Parks & Green Spaces Levy
- Play Area renovation

Vegetation Management Plan
- Woodland Park Vegetation Management Plan

Children's play area

(PDF 216k)

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