West Olympia Neighborhoods Have Greats Walks, Parks and Food


People in West Olympia who want to have good food and good times close to home, have got that and a bit more. While plentiful in resources, Olympia’s west side also has a dash of nature all around and features that keep it low key and comfortable, like being able to walk or bike to pick up dinner or visit with friends. Olympic Sotheby’s International Realty enjoys highlighting the much-loved neighborhoods in and around Olympia where people find those good meals, cozy homes and familiar hangouts.

West Olympia Offers Residents Choices for Services

Harrison Avenue is a main artery for West Olympia commerce. For people living in the vicinity, many common errands, food sources and a variety of entertainment options are within a short distance. From the Harrison Avenue ascent out of downtown, all the way out to Mud Bay Road, lumber goods, home and garden supplies, car repairs, postal services and medical appointment options mean not having to get on the freeway to travel. While off-set from the main drag, the Olympia Food Co-op west side location is a valuable resource for the northwest neighborhoods, and the small grocery even has an outdoor gardening section.

Garfield Elementary School and Jefferson Middle School are also within walking distance for many families. Parents with small children are close to Decatur Woods and Sunrise Park playgrounds and the Woodruff Park sprayground in summer. For an urban-wilderness escape, the Garfield Nature Trail passes through a refreshing wooded ravine and opens out to water views at West Bay Drive.

Decatur Woods Park has a nature trail, covered picnic area, a big grassy play space and two playground structures. Photo credit: Rebecca Sanchez

Plenty of Restaurant and Food Truck Choices in West Olympia

Choices abound for three meals a day. Start off with breakfast in West Olympia. A rustic Olympia Coffee Roasters with outdoor seating is just one block from Doos Donuts, or check out the hearty breakfast options at the popular Hash restaurant one block in the other direction.

The Park Side Cafe rooftop seating, open seasonally, has tables and chairs and a huge umbrella covering for shade. Photo credit: Rebecca Sanchez

“There had been a little breakfast place on the west side for a long time and they had left,” says Dean Damitio, owner of Westside Tavern and Hash. “We threw a menu together and kind of threw caution to the wind and opened up. It’s been a really great little community spot. The vibe on the west side in general is super cool. We truly have an amazing area to live, and the great thing about our places is that they’re walkable for the two huge neighborhoods on each side of Harrison Avenue. We get a ton of local walking traffic, and they’re just really loyal customers and we couldn’t ask for more. It’s just a great community.” 

Take lunch at the The Park Side Café where they have a gorgeous looking menu of organic, plant-based and locally-sourced meals. People can eat inside the café, outdoors at the West Central Park picnic tables or three stories up (during the summer) to eat with a view.

“The really cool thing about that is in the summertime when the weather’s good,” says Kyle Kanda, a broker with Olympic Sotheby’s International Realty, “you walk in, get your drink, get your snacks and treats, and then you can actually go to the rooftop seating and enjoy the amazing view of the west side of Olympia.”

For dinner, sit down at the Iron Rabbit Restaurant and Bar, or pick up a pizza at Vic’s Pizzeria. Food trucks in West Central Park, as well as further west on Harrison Avenue, such as Tacos California next to Sweetlee’s Ice Cream truck, make take-out dinners easy too. With so many options, repeats will only happen because the food is so good.

West Olympia neighborhood streets are lined with homes full of character and architectural styles ranging from turn of the 20th century to the 1920s through mid-century with a few modern styles too. Photo credit: Rebecca Sanchez

West Olympia Neighborhoods Great for Walks Among Homes with Character

North and south of Harrison Avenue in West Olympia, an eclectic array of home styles along landscape bordered sidewalks invite getting out and walking.

“If you’re coming up the old hospital hill on Fourth Street and Fifth Street, it’s a very peaceful, quiet setting, and those back roads are very good for walking,” says Kanda. “I’ve walked there many times when the weather’s good, and there’s quite a few parallel streets to make it easy for walking. It’s beautiful. I speak with a lot of people who live on the west side, and they love it because it’s quiet, easy to walk their dogs and it’s just a very quaint and peaceful setting.” 

West Olympia is welcoming to walking dogs and taking a stroll to and from parks or restaurants as the sidewalks are offset from the street a bit and are lined with mature landscaping. Photo credit: Rebecca Sanchez

Smaller-sized apartment buildings provide for denser housing while still complimenting the traditional neighborhood atmosphere among single-family homes. Home styles span the turn of the 20th century through the 1930s and 1950s, and every one of them is charming. The Rogers Street Historic District was established to preserve and recognize a number of Tumwater Lumber Mills homes in the 400-block, and many more west side streets include one-of-a-kind home characteristics from the past.

Wherever people live on the west side, it’s sure to be a home among the quaint and much-loved neighborhoods and not far from great food, local services and entertainment.

Ready to find a home in West Olympia? Visit the Olympic Sotheby’s International Realty website today.

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