Playgrounds are the only place in the whole wide world where your sole responsibility is to have as much fun as possible-besides Vegas! Kids can be an astronaut soaring to the moon on rocket swings or archaeologists in search of buried treasure (or mom’s iPhone) in the sand. From Dino digs to pirate parks, seaside swings to sparkling streams, check out the very best playgrounds LA has to offer.

Best View: Malibu Bluffs Park

Some things are well worth braving the bumper-to-bumper headache on PCH and this is one of them. Malibu Bluffs Park serves up playtime with a heaping side of jaw-dropping views. Here, kiddos hop from slide to slide with Pepperdine and the shimmering Pacific as their backdrop. The ocean-themed playground is well-maintained, and the bathrooms at the Michael Landon Community Center are actually clean. If you’re in the mood to picnic, there are plenty of tables and a large grassy area so kids can run like the wild-eyed banshees they are.

Bonus: The park also features free wi-fi so you can obsessively update Instagram with each precious moment in real time. The grandparents will thank you.

24250 Pacific Coast Highway

photo: Brigette R. via Yelp

  • Best View: Malibu Bluffs Park
  • Best Shade in the Valley: Brandon’s Village
  • Best Lakeside Park: Anthony C. Beilenson Park
  • Best for Buccaneers: Reese’s Retreat
  • The Original Accessible: Shane’s Inspiration
  • Best Place to Spend the Whole Day: Polliwog Park
  • Best “Top of the World, Ma” Play Place: Culver City Park
  • For Art You Can Play On: La Laguna Playground
  • Best for Little Escape Artists: Glen Alla Park
  • Best Paparazzi Lookout: Coldwater Canyon Park
  • Best For Astronauts in Training: Los Arboles “Rocketship” Park
  • Best Neighborhood Gem: York Park
  • Most Seussian Park: Grand Park
  • Best Beachside Play: Tongva Park
  • Best Bit Of Boston: Heritage Park

Want more great playgrounds?  For the little escape artists, we also love these fenced in parks.

Our readers have been so incredible with playground ideas, we’d love to know what LA parks you feel have the best slides? Best swings? Best water play? Best views? Give us a shout!

–Jennifer O’Brien