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Boats in Puget Sound along the Des Moines, Washington, waterfront
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    Washington

For foodies, sports fans, families and nature lovers, here’s what to do in the Seattle Southside region.

Situated between Seattle and Tacoma, Washington State’s Seattle Southside region consists of three small cities – SeaTac (home to Seattle’s international airport), Tukwila and Des Moines. Each offers family-oriented attractions and outdoor recreation, not to mention budget-friendly accommodations and amenities and convenience to the bigger cities. On land, on water and even indoors, here are four reasons Seattle Southside has become a top destination for family travel in the USA’s Pacific Northwest.

Outdoor Adventures

What was once the Puget Sound Electric Railway is now the 23-kilometer Interurban Trail, a multi-use trail perfect for biking, running or in-line skating. At the Des Moines Marina, hop on a sailboat tour for an excursion around Puget Sound and the beautiful waterfront. You’ll get great views of the Seattle skyline and mountains in the background. The marina is also a perfect spot to watch the sun set. On a diving trip at Redondo Beach, you might see octopi, crab, sculpin and squid hiding among the sea grass, sunken boats and even an old, sunken VW Beetle.

Seattle Southside, Washington: Scenic Outdoor Entertainment

Exploring Tukwila along the Interurban Trail, a former railway route
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Excitement for Kids and Families

Bounce your energy out at Flying Circus Extreme Air Sports, a massive indoor trampoline complex where you can climb walls, swing on a trapeze, challenge opponents to a game of dodge ball and get acrobatic on a ninja obstacle course. At Virtual Sports, you can escape reality and go totally virtual with laser tag and other virtual reality games. Both facilities are in Tukwila.

If you’re traveling with small children, take them to see more than 250 marine species native to the Puget Sound at MaST Aquarium in Des Moines. Give your sweet tooth something to savor at Seattle Chocolate, which offers tours and tastings at their chocolate factory.

Seattle Southside, Washington: Family-Friendly Activities

Hands-on fun at the MaST Aquarium in Des Moines
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Attractions for Sports Fans

Disc golf combines the game of golf with the fun of tossing a Frisbee. Try it at North SeaTac Park, which also offers a BMX track, basketball, soccer and picnic areas. If you want a day on a traditional golf course, book a tee time at Foster Golf Links. This 18-hole course opened in 1925 on a former homestead and is bordered by the Duwamish River. Look for the huge maple tree that was planted on the grounds just after the Civil War. Watch the Seattle Sounders MLS team practice at Starfire Sports, also home to the Seattle Seawolves major league rugby team.

Seattle Southside, Washington: All Kinds of Sports Leisure

Taking a golf lesson at Foster Golf Links in Tukwila
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Dining Options for Any Appetite

Exhausted from all that fun? Go directly to Sharps RoastHouse for slow-roasted prime rib, Applewood-smoked barbecue, frosty craft beers and a selection of small-batch sprits including vodka, gin, whiskey and tequila. There’s international options too, especially Din Tai Fung, the Tukwila branch of the popular Asian food chain that has legions of loyal foodie followers. Enjoy authentic Taiwanese steamed dumpling soups and noodle dishes.

Other notable favorites to try include Copperleaf Restaurant for elegant farm-to-table dining, specialty hot dogs at Des Moines Dog House (try the cream cheese and onion Seattle Dog) and Star Coffee Restaurant for Ethiopian food and freshly roasted coffee.

Seattle Southside, Washington: An Eclectic Dining Scene

A tempting spread of upscale American comfort food and craft cocktails at Sharps RoastHouse in SeaTac
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Getting Here

Getting to Washington's Seattle Southside couldn’t be easier. Book a flight into Seattle-Tacoma International Airport (SEA), also called Sea-Tac, where all manner of ground transportation is readily available: light rail, bus, ride sharing, shuttles, rental cars and taxis.