Ruston Way Waterfront

Minutes away from the downtown Museum District is Tacoma's Ruston Way Waterfront. Connecting downtown Tacoma to Point Defiance, this coastal road offers a 2 mile stretch of paved walking trail and scenic views of the South Puget Sound. With Mount Rainier to the West, the Olympic Mountain Range to the East and Commencement Bay, there's no better place to see seals playing in the surf or take an after-dinner stroll. 

Old Town, the original site of the Tacoma settlement, has a charming historical downtown. Grab a cup of coffee before you hit the parks along Ruston Way, or stop for lunch at The Spar. The northern tip of Tacoma holds Point Defiance Park, the largest city park west of the Mississippi River. The 702-acre park features a zoo and aquarium, a rose garden, old growth forest, playgrounds, and a true northwest beach. Point Ruston, one of the newest neighborhoods along the waterfront is a lively, family-friendly destination featuring shopping, entertainment, and dining.

Whether you're indulging in waterfront dining with panoramic views or immersing yourself in saltwater recreation, Ruston Way embodies the essence of sunny days in Tacoma. And for an unforgettable aerial perspective of this coastal gem, consider soaring above the splendor with Kenmore Air's South Sound Scenic tour, where you can witness the majesty of this coastal paradise from a whole new vantage point.

Wedding at Fuzhou Ting Park - Ruston Way WaterfrontRuston Way PathRuston kayakKenmore Air Scenic Flight

Things to do near Ruston Way:

One of Tacoma's must-see's is Point Defiance Park. Spanning 702 acres, this is the largest city park west of the Mississippi River. Visit the only combined zoo and aquarium in the northwest, and see polar bears up close. Take the 5-mile drive through the natural beauty of an old-growth forest, or stop and smell the roses (and rhododendrons!) in the gardens. A true northwest beach experience awaits at Owen Beach, where you're almost guaranteed to see some playful harbor seals. Want to get out on the water? Rent a kayak and paddle into Commencement Bay!

Old Town invites you to stretch your legs along Ruston Way's 2-mile paved walking trail, stopping at the waterfront parks along the way. Learn about Tacoma's Old Town at the Job Carr Cabin Museum, or visit the Chinese Reconciliation Park to see beautiful and unique architecture, including Fuzhou Ting. 

Point Ruston is a great family-destination. Kids will love playing in the splashground (check out other Pierce County spray parks here) or pedaling a surrey along the waterfront. Enjoy music with a view during their Summer Concert Series, or try waterfront ice skating at the Frozen Fountain in the winter.

Point Ruston

Point Ruston is the northwest’s premier waterfront neighborhood, offering living, dining, shopping, entertainment and recreation on…

Places to eat and drink

Fresh northwest seafood AND amazing waterfront views. Ruston Way is the place to be for waterfront dining. Duke's Chowder House is recognized for serving freshly caught seafood and serving up amazing bowls of chowder. Local tip: enjoy your meal al fresco and sit on the deck. Harbor Lights and Katie Downs all offer fresh seafood with panoramic views. Find more waterfront dining options here.

Point Ruston has become a dining hub for locals and visitors. Find wood-fired pizza at Farrelli's, contemporary northwest cuisine at Wildfin American Grill, or whiskey and burgers from Stack 571.

Duke's Chowder House

Seafood that’s fresh, not farmed. Beef that’s 100% Grass-Fed. All natural ingredients with no chemicals. Inspired preparation. Pleasant…

Harbor Lights Restaurant

Harbor Lights is located on scenic Ruston Way, overlooking Commencement Bay in Tacoma. For over 50 years, Harbor Lights has become well…

Places to stay

It's all about the waterfront. The Silver Cloud Inn sits right along the Ruston Way waterfront, offering beautiful views from every room. Homestays and cabins like the Loft @ Commencement and the Old Town Cottage offer additional accommodations along Ruston Way, making a morning waterfront walk easily accessible.

Silver Cloud Inn Tacoma Waterfront

Located in Tacoma’s Old Town community is the Silver Cloud Inn Tacoma Waterfront. Our hotel is conveniently located two miles from downtown Tacoma, Convention Center and award winning water front restaurants within walking distance. Our…

Loft @ Commencement

The décor is bright, lively and the space is most welcoming. Close to famed restaurants and the beautiful Ruston Waterwalk. Enjoy the spectacular views from The Loft @ Commencement Bay! The Loft @ Commencement is a studio-style apartment…

Old Town Cottage

Location! Location! Location! You will love this charming vintage Cottage located in historic Old Town Tacoma.