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Point Defiance Visitors Center

The Visitors Center is closed for the season but be sure to check out these Park Ranger programs that are scheduled all winter long:

 Park Ranger Programs

Coffee with the Birds

Feb. 11, Mar. 25, Apr. 15
9-10:30 am

Bring your coffee mug and enjoy the birds of Point Defiance Park. Meet the Park Ranger just before 9 am for a cup of coffee or hot chocolate. Tahoma Audubon will have a binocular library for participants to check-out binoculars for the duration of the bird walk at no additional cost. Perfect for everyone from beginner birders, to experts looking to connect with the birding community over hot coffee. You’re guaranteed to see birds with your coffee, thanks to real bird specimens provided by the Slater Museum of Natural History. Please dress for the weather, and don't forget your coffee mug! Lift Bridge Coffee will be providing free coffee and hot chocolate.

Fee: $4 per person or $ 12 for family of four. To register at the family price please call 253-305-1022.
register online

Forest Mindfulness

Feb. 12, Mar. 12, Apr. 16
10-11:30 am

Learn to slow down and experience the forest in a new way. Led by Certified Forest Therapist Julie Hepp, this program is designed to take participants slowly and intentionally through nature. The Guide gives a series of place-based invitations to connect to your senses, to yourself, and to others.

Through the place-based invitations, the participants interact in 20-30 minute increments of reflective and imaginative interaction in order to gain a deeper appreciation of the many living and non-living things in Point Defiance through moving slowly, and mindfully through the trails.

Participants should dress for the weather and bring snacks and water for this outdoor program. Ages 10+

Meet at Fort Nisqually Picnic Shelter parking lot.
$15 per person
register online

Ranger-Led Nature Walks

Feb. 18, Mar. 11, Apr. 8
1-2 pm

Meet the Park Ranger at the Rhododendron Garden for an exploration of nature in Point Defiance Park. Not recommended for strollers, wheelchairs, or children under 3.

Free but space is limited.
register online.

Tacoma Giants: Part 1
Trees of Point Defiance Park

Feb. 25, Mar. 25, Apr. 29
9-10 am

Meet Mik and the Beanstalk. Mik is a Certified Arborist happy to share his knowledge of the trees of Point Defiance with you; and the Beanstalk is a 186-foot Pseudotsuga menziesii, a.k.a. Douglas-fir, located a stone's throw away from Fort Nisqually. Ideal for kids, older folks and people with mobility issues, the event will include activities around the Fort Nisqually Picnic Shelter and the Beanstalk nearby. Less than 500' of walking required to participate.

Instructor: Certified Arborist Mik Miazio
Fee: $4 per person or $ 12 for family of four. To register at the family price please call (253) 305-1022.
register online

Tacoma Giants: Part 2
Immersion Tree Walk

Feb. 25, Mar. 25, Apr. 29
11 am-1 pm

Did you know that there are living beings over 200 feet tall residing right here in Point Defiance Park? Immerse yourself into the world of living natural history and fall in love with the infinite shades of green in this in-depth look into the biology and history of the trees of Point Defiance. Meet the instructor at the Fort Nisqually Picnic Shelter. Please dress appropriately for the weather, as this program will take place outside and require about 1 mile of walking.

Fee: $8 per person
register online


Come to the Visitors Center during the summer to...

Tour interpretive exhibits, pick up a park map, talk to knowledgeable Park Ambassadors and get information on special events and recreational opportunities in the park. Books, gifts and refreshments are available for purchase.

The Visitors Center is currently closed for the season.
We'll be back Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day weekend 2017!

5715 Roberts Garden Rd., inside Point Defiance Park
Tacoma, WA 98407
(253) 305-1088

As you enter Point Defiance from Pearl Street, the Visitors Center is just inside the park, on the left, across the street from the tennis courts.

Drop by to rent a picnic shelter and picnic kit.
Learn more about the shelters & picnic kits

Point Defiance Park has tennis courts that boast a spectacular view. Come play...we'll loan you the tennis equipment!

Drop by, provide us your Driver’s License and we'll loan tennis rackets and balls for up to 2 hours of play. Check-out begins 10 am, equipment must be returned by 4:30 pm. 

Granola bars and water available for purchase.

Park Ambassadors work seasonally at the Visitors Center (and/or the park kiosk) and give talks, answer questions, help visitors find information, participate in educational tours and more.

Point Defiance Park’s first uniformed, interpretive guide.

Download a Park Map

E.R. Roberts Family Portrait Outside Point Defiance Lodge - photo courtesy of Jean Insel RobesonHISTORY
The Board of Park Commissioners approved $2,200 to build a residence in Point Defiance Park in 1898 for Superintendent Ebenezer Rhys Roberts, referred to as the Keeper's Lodge. Read more about the history of Point Defiance Park's Lodge.