Hot town, summer in the city! It’s the perfect time to splash around in cool water for some sweet relief on those hot days. If you don’t have a backyard pool and don’t feel like braving the freeways to hit the beach, you can head to one of these great splash pads (many of which have reopened since our record-breaking rainy winter) and cool down.
photo: Brian Smith via Flickr
Alondra Community Regional Park
We tend to stay in our neighborhood bubbles in LA, but it’s always nice to have an excuse to get out. This splash pad is a great excuse to visit the South Bay. The park is full of entertainment for the entire family; the kids can alternate between the splash pad and playground. And if you have a big kid in tow, they may even enjoy the skate park or the park’s swimming pool. But if parents just need to take it easy, stick to the splash pad—it’s hours of entertainment. The splash pad is open from 10 a.m.-7 p.m. all summer.
3850 W. Manhattan Beach Blvd.
photo: Annenberg Community Beach House
Annenberg Community Beach House
If you have the energy for driving to the beach but want a few extra comforts, Annenberg Community Beach House is the place go. This beautiful facility is open to the public and is complete with a great sandy play area and splash pad. Beach access is easy, so if you feel like heading to the waves you can, but you can also relax and let your water babies splash and play all day without getting a lick of sand between your toes. While you’re there, take a tour of the Marian Davies Guest House or let the kids visit Monsters on Vacation where they can participate in home-movie making or other Monster Beach House happenings. And if you don’t feel like making lunch you can even enjoy a take out lunch on the roofdeck, or a sit down (and glass of wine) at Back on the Beach Cafe. You can buy day passes for the historical beach house pool (half off on Mondays) but if you don’t feel like the extra work, lay low at the pad. The splash pad is open through September 5 from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. Off season hours vary.
415 Pacific Coast Highway
photo: K L. via Yelp
Pathfinder Community Park
This hidden gem of a park boasts spectacular city views, an all encompassing playground and a great (and relatively new) splash pad. The pad is open year round, with hours daily from May 1-October 15 from 10 a.m.-7 p.m. With all of this variety, this is a great park to spend the day so pack a picnic, bring a blanket and let your water bugs run around the splash pad and playground all day until they wear themselves out.
18150 Pathfinder Rd.
photo: LeTania Kirkland Smith
Rio De Los Angeles State Park
The LA River’s popularity is on the upswing and there are hidden gems tucked throughout. One of those is the Rio De Los Angeles State Park. This park was once a railroad facility that was transformed into a beautiful park. Rio De Los Angeles has great sports fields, a playground, hiking trails with views of the river and, of course, the splash pad. The cool down spot is open through Labor Day from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. And bring a picnic and a blanket because there is plenty of shaded grassy areas to get comfortable and enjoy a lazy summer day.
1900 N. San Fernando Rd.
photo: E H. via Yelp
Rancho Tapo Community Park
All of LA can get hot, but places like Simi Valley get really hot, so it’s not surprising that one of the city’s best splash pads is located there. The pad is open daily from Memorial Day through Labor Day from 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. & 3:30 p.m.-7 p.m. If you can get to the park before the sun is too high, be sure to take advantage of the playground, sports courts (they have bocce ball!) and the 1/2 mile of trails for little hikers. Bring a picnic and enjoy lunch at one of the shaded pavilions. If you have to be in the heat, this is a lovely place to cool off.
3700 Avienda Simi
photo: Doreen M. via Yelp
Stoner Park Splash Pool
This spot has a pool with a splash pad attached so there’s a little something for everyone. The splash pad has fountains, sprays and spouts that line the front edge of the pool for cooling off and getting silly. Once drylanders have dipped in their toes, you can shift to the pool, which is 4 1/2 feet deep (if you feel comfortable) and allows most to splash around safely.
Kids 7 & up and adults can enjoy the twisty slide. Because of the pool, this splash pad has an admission fee of $3.50 for adults and $1 for kids. There’s a 1-1 ratio of adults to kids in the pool for kids under 7 and everyone must have a bathing suit. Pool and water slide hours vary, check the website.
1835 Stoner Ave.
Virginia Avenue Park
This 9.5 acre park is a beauty and a great place to bring a group of friends to spend the day. The park boasts two modern playgrounds, basketball courts, a “patio” for picnicking and, of course, the splash pad. This spot is great in its simplicity with water shooting from the walls and ground with the addition of several water “cannons.” The park is also adjacent to the Pico Branch Library and hosts a weekly Farmer’s Market on Saturdays.
This splash pad is open daily through Labor Day from 10 a.m.-6 p.m. However, hours of operation are subject to change this summer due to drought restrictions, so call ahead before bringing the kids out in their suits.
2200 Virginia Ave.
photo: LeTania Kirkland Smith
Arthur J. Will Memorial Fountain at Grand Park
We love Grand Park and smack in the middle is one of the most glorious splash pads in the city. This wide open space gives city kids the space to move freely and jump through the multitude of spouts that give way to mini fountains that spring from the ground. There is plenty of outdoor furniture (that you can move into the shade as you please) to make the trip comfortable and the bathrooms are well-maintained (hallelujah). That shaded spot is perfect for sipping your iced Starbucks, which is open right next to the fountain. Plus, lunchtime usually opens the park up to delicious food trucks and Grand Park hosts a slew of events. Check the website for details. Grand Park also has a ridiculously fun and sunny playground. So, it’s a good idea to hit it early or late in the day. Before or after the water—it’s all good.
210 N. Grand Ave.
This park is tucked away in the hills of Glendale and is perfect for a low-key fun-in the sun day. It features a small wading pool that’s only filled with water and staffed with a life guard on Monday from noon-6 p.m. and Saturday from 1:30–6:30 p.m. this summer. The pool is about 8 inches deep so kids can play safely. If the family needs a break from the pool, there is a great playground just across the grass, picnic tables and clean bathrooms. There are 4 other wading pools open in Glendale. They have varying open days so check their website for details. Take note: this pad is best for your tadpoles, bigger swimmers will be happier with a bigger pond.
2531 E Glenoaks Blvd.
photo: Kell J. via Yelp
Buccaneer Bay – Splash Water Park
At just the right size to navigate with little ones and older kids alike, this pirate themed water park will keep kids and parents entertained for hours. Buccaneer Bay features three water slides for daredevils and a lazy river for your luxury seekers. Buccaneer Bay also has a children’s play area and two spray and splash pad areas where your your wrinkled little water babies can splash to their heart’s content. Splash La Mirada also Kids tickets for the day are $14.95, adults are $19.95. The park is open daily through August 13, weekends through October 1 and Saturdays through October 14.
La Mirada Regional Aquatics Center
13806 La Mirada Blvd.
Still want more ways to stay cool? How about:
Dive in to these terrific public pools.
Splash in these all natural swimming holes.
Spend the day at at family friendly beach.
Take a day trip to Casitas Water Adventure to splash and chill.
Leave us a comment below telling us your favorite swimming spots in Los Angeles for summertime.
—LeTania Kirkland Smith