Lakewood, Washington, is a medium sized town with a population of just over 60,000 people. However, it is filled with places to see for tourists and travellers. Lakewood is actually a suburb of the city of Tacoma, numerous residents of Lakewood work and play in Tacoma and vice versa.
Even though many locals might not immediately consider Lakewood as their go-to place for fun, this town has a wide array of things to try. It ranges from places to shop to many great Asian restaurants and grocery stores. It also can be an excellent place to seek out affordable homes not too far out of the town that ranges from below average in price point to amazingly upscale homes on the shores of picturesque lakes. Let's find out more about this beautiful town.
Lakewood is a great place to live for those that live or work on JBLM as it's just outside the base's gate, but its neighborhoods also offer proximity to Olympia and Tacoma.
One of the best-known places in Lakewood is the Lakewood Towne Center. After the Lakewood Mall was mostly demolished at the start of the new millennium, this collection of massive box stores and restaurants went up. you'll find a touch of everything from Michael's to Bed Bath and Beyond to focus on, many restaurants (dine-in and takeaway), grocery stores, and more. As far as real estate is concerned, this is definitely the most premiere area of Lakewood.
The Lakewood Playhouse can be found at the Towne Center, too. The playhouse puts on a spread of plays and musicals. While it is a community theater, the assembly value is high, and shows are tons of fun.
The area is serviced by the Pierce County Library System. The Lakewood Library is one of the most prominent and important libraries of this system. It's located at 6302 Wildaire Road Southwest, on the side of the Lakewood Towne Center. The library has room for community meetings as well as computers for the use of the general public.
As you might expect from a place called "Lakewood", there are a lot of beautiful lakes here. Some of those lakes are American Lake, Gravelly Lake, Lake Steilacoom, and Lake Louise. American Lake is the largest of them all and also has two of the Tacoma-area beaches along its shores. This lake is great for boating, and its nearby park also serves as a great place for walks, picnics, and lounging outdoors.
There are some surprisingly beautiful spaces here, one among which is Lakewold Gardens. These gardens were designed by Thomas Church and showcase some of the most iconic and famous plants of the Pacific Northwest, the hottest of which are likely the 900 rhododendrons!
The Georgian mansion on the Lakewold grounds serves as a fantastic place for events such as summer weddings. You can also spend a few hours over there on a sunny day and have a good time. You can have a picnic with your family and friends, patronize the garden store, or search for public events. there's an entrance fee to urge in.
Lakewood is not more than a 20 minute drive away from downtown Tacoma, so if the hotels located in Tacoma's city center don't suit you or if you only want more options, you can choose from the large array of good hotels in Lakewood.
The absolute best place to remain in Lakewood is hands-down the Thornewood Castle. This 500-year-old Tudor mansion was shipped piece by piece from the English countryside to Washington State in 1907. Today, it's one of the most expensive bed and breakfast spot within the area. It's not cheap, but you'll not leave feeling disappointed. This is often also an excellent spot to visit if you would like to splurge for the Halloween season as, most years, the castle offers haunted tours with its overnight stays during October.
If spending a couple of hundred dollars to remain in a chic castle bedroom may be a bit out of your range, don't worry—there are many budget-friendly hotels in Lakewood, too. Some of the best ones include:
Lakewood is a nice place to live in general, akin in some ways to East Tacoma and South Tacoma in terms of cost. Homes are available in all sizes in Lakewood. Generally, they range from 1,000 to 1,800 square feet.
You will also find many parts of Lakewood with very small and sometimes rundown homes or the entire opposite—grandiose lakefront mansions. Most of these houses were built between 1960 and 1989. A lot of military families can also be found in Lakewood thanks to its proximity to Joint Base Lewis McChord as well as the freeway I-5, as it's located very close to Olympia, DuPont, and Tacoma.
You will find a good range of apartments in Lakewood, from cheap places to large complexes with amenities like swimming pools. There are not a lot of unoccupied apartments within the area between the main lakes (American, Steilacoom, and Gravelly), but you'll find many options just to the north and west of the military base.
You will find another pocket of apartments on the brink of Pierce College. Scout along Military Road and Steilacoom Boulevard if you want to check these out.
If you've got a car, Lakewood is quite easy to reach from Seattle or Tacoma via I-5 exits 123 through 129. The exits will vary depending on which a part of Lakewood you are looking to drive to.
If you do not have a car, don't worry, Lakewood is very well connected by Pierce Transit buses. Several buses serve the Lakewood Towne Center Transit Center, making it easy to transfer at the Towne Center to buses that enter all parts of Tacoma, Steilacoom, along with several Express buses, including the airport bus. The bus routes which cover Lakewood are 2, 3, 4, 48, 202, 206, 212, 214, and 574.
So that was a brief snapshot of Lakewood, Washington. It's a really beautiful little town and if you are in the Seattle/Tacoma area, you should definitely consider paying it a visit You will definitely enjoy your time there.