Seattle Travel

12 Fun Things to Do in Bothell, WA from Unique Bars to a Board Game Cafe

Post created July 9, 2023

There are plenty of fun things to do in Bothell, WA if you look in the right places. Take a trip to a fantasy-themed board game cafe or travel just 17 miles outside the city to a gorgeous waterfall. Spend lots of time exploring the city’s downtown. Bothell has cool restaurants, bars, outdoor attractions, and unique local gems. This up-and-coming spot just may surprise unsuspecting visitors.

Not sure what to do in this little Washington suburb? Keep reading! Here’s an overview of 12 fun things to do in Bothell, Washington from unique bars to a board game cafe!

12 Fun Things to Do in Bothell, WA

Zulu’s Board Game Cafe

Head over to Zulu’s Board Game Cafe in downtown Bothell if you consider yourself any kind of fantasy, gaming, or board game nerd. This casual board game cafe and restaurant boasts a library of free-to-play games, board games for sale, and a menu of cleverly named food and drinks. 

Bring your games or borrow one of theirs and get playing. Zulu’s also hosts competitions and group play nights for games like Magic the Gathering, Dungeons & Dragons, and Pokemon.  If you’re searching for new games to play and people to play with, come to the Monday Night Board Game Meetup to do just that. 

You won’t go hungry here. The tavern-themed cafe has plenty of great food and drinks. Order beer, cider, and even mead to feel like you’ve stepped straight into a fantasy novel. Your food options include things like the “Dragonborn” (spicy smash burger), “Hydrastrips” (chicken tenders), or a “Druid Salad.” Come on weekdays from 12 pm to 3 pm to enjoy food from the “Elevenses” menu.

Krō Bär Bothell

Doubtful that there are any cool bars in Bothell? Krō Bär will change your mind. This small bar on Main Street has industrial, gothic, and speakeasy vibes, and it’s a must-visit if you love unique craft cocktails. 

Expect classics with a twist like the krō Old Fashioned which has chocolate bitters and vanilla pepper syrup. Other cocktails include The Silent Cry with Japanese whisky, a yuzu-beet infusion, and winter melon bitters. One of the strangest-sounding cocktails, Hiding the Pickle, has Irish whiskey, Douglas Fir Liqueur, and a dill pickle and pilsner syrup. 

The food menu is worth perusing too. Krō Bär serves small bites like a housemade charcuterie board, burrata, and rosemary brown sugar nuts. For more filling dinner, try the delectable gnocchi or tea-brined duck. 

Blyth Park

Blyth Park (Image Credit: Shutterstock / Mariusz S. Jurgielewicz)

Blyth Park is one of Bothell’s great parks, and the 40-acre green space has plenty to offer visitors who want a relaxed time in nature. The uncrowded park is on the south end of Bothell right along the Sammamish River. It has plenty of walking trails, open fields, picnic shelters, and spots to launch a kayak.

For a more active visit, take advantage of the disc golf course. Bring your bike to test the trails and even connect to the popular Burke Gilman Trail from here. Parents and caregivers will be happy with the playground. It’s a decent size and perfect for energetic kids.

Bothell Landing Park

Bothell Landing (Image Credit: Shutterstock / azzure6023)

Bothell Landing Park is another park along the Sammamish River, and one of the most popular things to do here is get on the water! Bring your kayak, canoe, and paddleboard, or rent one from WhatsSup Stand Up Paddle and Surf. The rental service is right in the park.

If you choose to stay on land, you can walk, run, jog, or bike along the park’s well-maintained trails. There’s a pop-up dog park on the north end of the park with sections for both small and large breeds. Take kids to the playground that’s perfect for all the climbing, sliding, and swinging their heart desires. 

The park is also home to the Bothell Historical Museum. Learn a bit of local history at the free museum or simply admire the historical buildings. After you finish your park excursion, grab something to eat in downtown Bothell which is just a few blocks away.

The Hop and Hound

You’ll find all the local beer lovers at The Hop and Hound in downtown Bothell. This taproom and bottleshop stocks the best craft beer from Washington and beyond. 

If there’s a Washington brewery you’ve been meaning to try, visit Hop and Hound to see if one of its beers is on tap. Because Hop and Hound rotates its taps regularly, you’re bound to discover something good on return visits. You can also purchase carefully selected cans and bottles or fill a growler.

The taproom is super dog-friendly, so bring your pups for some socialization. The inside is a bit small, but there’s a patio and beer garden that’s great, and busy, in the summer. While Hop and Hound doesn’t serve food of its own, rotating food trucks on the weekends fill that gap and provide those much-needed beer munchies.

McMenamins Anderson School

Despite the name, McMenamins Anderson School is not actually a school. Instead, it’s more of a campus full of several wonderful Bothell attractions. The McMenamins campus in Bothell consists of a hotel, several bars, restaurants, a movie theater, and an indoor swimming pool. 

If you’re looking for a place to stay in Bothell, book a room in the hotel, which was converted from a junior high school. However, you can experience any of the McMenamins Anderson School attractions whether you’re staying at the hotel or not.

Some of the most popular attractions are the movie theater, where you can have snacks and meals delivered right to your seat. McMenamins North Shore Lagoon is another must-visit. It’s a tiki bar with an indoor pool. Both of which will make you feel like you’re on vacation far away. 

Graham’s Royal Tea

Go to Graham’s RoyalTea for the cutest afternoon tea experience in downtown Bothell. Make a reservation at this charming cafe for one of the regular afternoon teas or a special occasion tea event. 

Graham’s RoyalTea has a variety of menus to choose from. Select your tea time experience based on how hungry you are or how much you’d like to spend. Enjoy finger sandwiches, scones, little sweets, and, of course, lots of tea. When you get in, they’ll even offer you an optional little vintage hat you can wear for the entirety of your stay.

Ranch Drive-In 

Get delicious, old-school burgers, fries, ice cream, and shakes from Ranch Drive-In. It’s a Bothell staple that’s been serving quick eats in a Western-themed restaurant since the 50s. 

Your options include juicy, generously sized burgers, gooey grilled cheeses, fish and chips, and more. Order some tasty crinkle-cut fries or crispy onion rings to go along with it. For dessert grab an ice cream or milkshake in a variety of flavors like classic vanilla, chocolate malt, or crowd-pleasing butterscotch.

Cherry Creek Falls

Cherry Creek Falls (Image Credit: Shutterstock / Alyssa Tidwell)

Bothell is only 30 minutes away from a beautiful hike to one of Washington’s many waterfalls. Drive out to Cherry Creek Falls for a great, family-friendly hike with a good payoff. Just make sure you come early as parking is limited.

The hike to this pretty waterfall is pleasant and relatively flat. It’s about 5 miles roundtrip and the trail is shady, which makes it great for hot days. Another thing that makes this a good, hot day waterfall hike? When you reach the falls, you can take a dip in the pool they flow into for a good cool down before heading back.

Elevated Sportz Trampoline Park

Elevated Sportz may be the best place to take kids in Bothell on cold or rainy days. This indoor trampoline park has plenty of space for kids to run, bounce, and play. Let them jump like crazy on the wall-to-wall trampolines, or venture to the other parts of the indoor play park. 

They can try out the laser maze or go to foam pits to practice flipping. There’s also a ninja course, which is perfect for testing their balance. And once they finish with that let the kids roam free in the adventure playground which has slides, monkey bars, a maze, and much more. 

There’s no way a kid can get bored here, and if you want to tire out energetic kids, Elevated Sportz is one of the best places for it.

North Creek Park

North Creek Park (Image Credit: Shutterstock / PascualPixels)

North Creek Park is a great Bothell Park for wildlife spotting. It consists of a wetlands area with a long boardwalk that runs through the length of the park. While on the trail, stay on the lookout for critters like frogs, eagles, weasels, and herons.

This is a well-maintained and beautiful place to go for a peaceful morning walk full of birdsong. The park is dog friendly, but they must be kept on a leash. You’ll also find picnic shelters for lunches and snacks as well as a playground for children.

Burke Gilman Trail

Burke Gilman Trail (Image Credit: Shutterstock / Diegomezr)

Bothell’s Burke Gilman Trail is the place to check out if you’re an avid cyclist. This 20-mile trail connects Seattle to Bothell and runs through several other cities in between. It’s primarily for bikers, but joggers, runners, and walkers use it too. 

This is the perfect “hop on, hop off” trail since there are plenty of sights to see along the way. Stop at breweries, coffee shops, and cafes along the way. The trail is well-maintained and winds through forests. It’ll take you alongside Lake Washington and near various beautiful parks and beaches.

It may be small compared to places like Seattle and Bellevue, but there are so many fun things to do in Bothell, WA. The next time you’re in the area, make sure to check out some of these cool Bothell attractions. For more of our Bothell favorites check out The 15 Best Restaurants in Bothell and The 10 Best Happy Hours in Bothell, WA.

Ashleigh on ferry Island hopping.

Hi, I'm Ashleigh! Welcome to Seattle Travel, my little piece of beautiful PNW. This is home and I'm here to share all my experiences so visitors and locals alike can find the best experiences this part of the country has to offer. I started Seattle Travel in 2012 as a way to journal my experiences and over the years have been encouraged by family and friends to open up my adventures to everyone. I actively seek out the best food, activities, and day trips and give you a local perspective.  The Pacific Northwest is one of the most beautiful areas in the world and my goal is to let you explore it to the fullest. 

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