Take a break from the slide, monkey bars and teeter totter routine. These unstructured playgrounds bring play to a whole other level with zip lines, rope swings and giant logs to climb. Kids will use their creativity as well as their muscles to explore and build new worlds. Flip through the pics to find one near you!

Adventure Playground – Irvine, Ca

While there are two adventure playgrounds in Orange County (discover Huntington Beach’s seasonal wild play area here), Adventure Playground Irvine has both the traditional play structure and an open-ended play area. There’s a huge mud pit with dump trucks, a loose-parts area, giant LEGO blocks, a mural wall for painting, a sensory garden, a bamboo forest and a tree fort.

Good to know: There’s several old-fashioned water pumps perfect for cleaning up dirty kiddos!

Cost: Free

Online: cityofirvine.org/adventure-playground

photo: Dawn A. via yelp


Know of an unstructured playground near you? Give it a shout-out in the comments below!

— Kate Loweth & Gabby Cullen