LA kids are lucky to have year-round sunshine, making every day a perfect park day. But sometimes too much of a good thing means you’ll leave the park with a mini-lobster if you’re not hyper vigilant with the sunscreen. Read on to discover 9 awesome shady playgrounds from the Valley to the Beach that make playtime on a hot, sunny day, super cool—literally.

Polliwog Park

There are two playgrounds in this sprawling 18-acre park, that also includes a duck-filled lake, a botanical garden, a historical museum, and an adjacent wildlife refuge. Chose wisely when you pick your play spot, as the one closest to the lake will leave you in the sun, while the newer playground, closest to Manhattan Beach Boulevard, beckons you out of the heat with its large, shading canopies and some of the coolest slides in the city. See those trees (above)? Nature's own shade canopy does some great work here, too.

1601 Manhattan Beach Blvd.
Manhattan Beach

photo: Charles C. via Yelp


What’s your favorite place to play in the shade? Share any shady playgrounds we missed!

—Shahrzad Warkentin