1) Beach at Marine View Park
It’s one of Washington State’s best kept secrets – this relatively standard park near Normandy city borders on a beautiful, natural beach for those who are adventurous enough to find it. Walk the loop trail through the leafy trees, but turn off down a separate path about halfway through the loop. At the edge of the park, there are two sets of wooden stairs, and at the bottom of those stairs lies a sandy, calm shoreline which is about as serene as you can get. It’s relatively easy to access on foot, but the walk (as relaxing as it is), keeps away the crowds. You’ll feel like you’ve stumbled across your own, private beach once you get down to it. The staircase has viewing platforms with stunning views across Des Moines and to Mount Rainier.
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