The long and lazy days of summer vacation are ahead, days that call for tossing some snacks in a cooler and heading out to explore a new playground. We’ve rounded up some of the best playgrounds in the Edmonton area – trust me, these playgrounds are worth the drive!

Meadowview Dinosaur PlaygroundMeadowview Dinosaur Park | Meadowview Drive and CW Gaetz Road, Leduc

Come for the dinosaurs, stay for the sweet zipline!  In 2013 a bone from an Hadrosaur was found in Meadowview (now safely stored at the Royal Tyrell Museum in Drumheller) and to commemorate the find, a dino themed playground was built. The zipline that stretches across part of the park is another big draw for the kiddos.

Rotary PlayscapeSpruce Grove Rotary Playscape | 221 Jennifer Heil Way, Spruce Grove

Billed as the park that was “designed by kids, for kids”, the bright colours and endless choices of playground equipment offer something for everyone. Parents will love the fact that the entire park is based in rubber flooring (no sand!), and that the perimeter is fenced. The main entrance is the only way in and out – perfect for those kiddos that might be tempted to wander.

Argyll Community PlaygroundArgyll Community Playground | 6750 – 88 Street, Edmonton

It is simply fact – playgrounds are getting cooler. Following the trend of nature-themed park spaces, Argyll is a sea of browns, greys and dark greens, with a little red thrown in here and there for good measure. Wood and rock inspired climbing structures are sprinkled throughout, and much of the park is based in wood chips.

Hazeldean community playgroundHazeldean Community Playground | 9630 – 66 Avenue NW, Edmonton

All aboard for fun at the bright and colourful train themed playground in the Hazeldean Community! Train fans will, of course, love the engines. (one even has a train whistle!) We love the colour and unique details (especially the suitcase stairs!) and the scavenger hunt for a variety of little animals added to the design! See if you can spot them all!

Spray Park and Playground in ArdrossanArdrossan Spray Park and Playground | 80-1 Avenue, Ardrossan

You’ve never seen a spray park like this before! The Ardrossan Spray Park and Playground, with its farm theme and giant spraying tractor, is going to blow your barn doors off – pun completely intended! The accompanying playground is based in rubber and also has a agricultural theme, right down to the farmer cutout photo op!

Borden Park PlaygroundBorden Park Playground | 7507 Borden Park Road, Edmonton

If you can get over the surprise of seeing a giant mother bear and her two cuddly cubs staring back at you from just beyond the trees in the middle of the city, you’ll fall in love with Borden Park Playground. The animal carvings (there’s also a snake and a big beehive) are as unique as the giant treehouse play structure! Pack a picnic lunch and make it a day trip – swim the outdoor pool or browse the public art!

Lendrum ParkLendrum Community League Playground | 11335 – 57 Avenue, Edmonton

Speaking of playgrounds with giant carvings – you can’t miss the oversized bee at Bee Park, a.k.a. Lendrum Community League Playground. From the giant bee you can sit on, to the honeycombs you can crawl in, to the little climbing bees on the giant tree slide, this is one park you’ve got to see to bee-lieve! (haha!) This park also features a brand-new spray park!

Andy’s Playground | Dow Centennial Fields, 54320 RR 231, Fort Saskatchewan

Andy’s Playground is a special place named after a very special young man who tragically lost his life far too soon. His friends and family built the playground in his memory, and what a job they did! It’s huge and bright and colourful, with tons of fun features, including a zipline! Important messages are carved into the park, including “kindness”, “love” and “laughter”.

The Hills at charlesworthThe Hills at Charlesworth | Ellerslie Road & Charlesworth Way SW, Edmonton

You probably think you know playgrounds. I know I certainly did. That was before I set eyes, last summer, on the playground at The Hills at Charlesworth. Very modern, with clean lines and a simple design, this playground is as beautiful as it is fun. It’s not big, but its uniqueness will keep your kids engaged! The smaller toddler park is a bonus, too!

Yohemas ParkYohemas Park | 130 Tisbury Street, Sherwood Park

Tucked in just off Wye Road is one of Sherwood Park’s newest parks, and what it lacks in size, it makes up for in unique features. A mass of twisting and turning rope climbing structures make up the bulk of the big kids park. The toddler park offers a host of interesting add-ons, including our favourite, the marble race track!

Eaux Claires playgroundEaux Claires Playground | 16103 – 95 Street, Edmonton

Your kids will love running the show in this bright and colourful city! The details are impeccable, from the clock tower that tops the police station, to the firefighter cutout (don’t forget the camera!) to the tiny jail cell, imaginations can run wild! Younger kids can bring strider bikes, trikes or scooters to cruise the “road” around the toddler park!

Meadowlark Community playgroundMeadowlark Community Playground | 15961 – 92 Avenue, Edmonton

Another new kid on the block in Edmonton’s park community, the impressive new play structure at Meadowlark Community Playground features cool climbing ropes, two super long slides, tandem swings, and not one, but TWO ziplines! We also love the adorable dragonfly climbing wall on the toddler park!