The summer days can be long and finding a playground to keep your kids occupied and entertained can be similar to locating a unicorn. Kids love playgrounds but some structures only hold their attention for half an hour. When I’m packing up for a day at a park, I want a playground that is going to provide entertainment for 4+ hours. Here are Family Fun Vancouver’s picks for “Playgrounds Worth the Drive in Metro Vancouver”.

Maple Ridge Park

Best Playground Water Park Combos: Maple Ridge Park

Photo credit: CK Lee for City of Maple Ridge

What Kids Love: Kids love everything about Maple Ridge Park! 2 water parks (one for bigger kids & one for little kids), a HUGE playground nestled in the shade of massive trees (slides, multiple and varied climbing structures, and swings), a sand pit with digging machines, and a HUGE field for running around. Parents will love the washrooms in close proximity to the play area, the numerous picnic tables and covered seating areas, the coolness of the ample shaded areas, and the many parking options.

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Where Parents Can Find It: 23200 Fern Crescent, Maple Ridge

Queenston Park

Habitat Systems Inc - Queenston Park Playground

Photo credit: Lindsay Follett

What Kids Love: The entire playground has WOW factor. Though it is a community playground (no washrooms or drinking fountains), Queenston Park’s Playground is a must visit. After climbing up the steep hill countless times, your little ones will come home tuckered.

Where Parents Can Find It: 3415 Queenston Avenue, Coquitlam

Lions Park at Centennial Beach

Lions Park at Centennial Beach - Habitat Systems Inc PlaygroundsWhat Kids Love: This playground is massive! Not only is it an accessible playground, it is also on the beach & full of climbing, swinging fun.

Where Parents Can Find It: 541 Centennial Pkwy, Delta

Confederation Park

Best Playground Water Park Combos: Confederation Park in Burnaby

Photo credit:City of Burnaby

What Kids Love: The new and improved playground & water park at Confederation Park is fantastic! Our kids LOVE the imaginative play that is cultivated at the water park. Water trickles down ramps, encounters kid-controlled blockages, sprays out of the top of rocks, and comes out of a pump. The kids can work together to move the water, or work independently figuring out a mechanism on their own. The water park is HUGE and can accommodate a vast number of children. The biggest challenge? Keeping track of which kid is yours! The playground encircles the water park. There are a number of play structures scattered around giving ample space for kids to play. Big disc swings, slides, climbing structures, and more keep the kids busy when they are done with the water park. Parents will like the shade provided by the big trees, and the many picnic spots & tables.

Where Parents Can Find It: 250 Willingdon Avenue, Burnaby

Sapperton Park

Climbing structures at Sapperton Park Adventure Park - Lindsay Follett

Photo credit: Lindsay Follett

What Kids Love: Sapperton Park has received a complete renovation in 2017. The amazing nature, adventure play-based playground opened in late May. The sand & water park is scheduled to open at the end of June. This playground encourages hard, physical play. Kids are running everywhere, climbing, swinging, sliding themselves into a sweaty, red-cheeked, smiling state. The parents are able to relax in charming red Adirondack chairs or perch on the low cement walls. Definitely bring a change of clothes and a towel when coming to this park. The kids are going to be covered head to toe in wet sand…but they’ll be exhausted & smiling!

Where Parents Can Find It: 351 E Columbia Street, New Westminster

Rocky Point Park

Best Playground Water Park Combos: Rocky Point Park

Photo credit: City of Port Moody

What Kids Love: Rocky Point Park is frequently voted a top playground in Metro Vancouver. Aside from the stunning geographic location (right along Burrard Inlet), the playground and water park have lots to offer kids. The water park is train-themed. There are painted train tracks, a train crossing sign, “tunnels” to chug through, and is backed by a train-station looking building (that’s where you can find the oh-so-important washrooms). Right beside the beloved water park is a boat-themed playground. The massive boat structure invites kids to get creative in how they play. Friendships and alliances are formed surprisingly quickly during endless games of “pirate”. Parents will enjoy the picnic tables with a view of the water, the side-by-side layout of the playground and water park, and the beautiful walks throughout Rocky Point Park. And don’t forget there are some tasty restaurants in the park: Rocky Point Ice Cream, The Boathouse, and Pajo’s Fish & Chips.

Where Parents Can Find It: 2800 Block Murray Street, Port Moody

Steveston Community Park

Best Playground Water Park Combos: Steveston Community Park

Photo credit: City of Richmond

What Kids Love: There is so much to do at the 30 acre Steveston Community Park. The water park features numerous spray guns, bubblers, rain towers, and spray/misting structures. The playground has been extensively re-designed and is wheelchair accessible. There are ramps and elevated platforms, a huge climbing structure and a big slide.

Where Parents Can Find It: 4011 Moncton St, Richmond

Creekside Park

Creekside Park Playground

Photo credit: Park Board

What Kids Love: The Creekside Playground opened in 2017 and kids in downtown Vancouver can’t get enough! A climbing tower, giant tube slide, swings, play hut with ramp, musical instruments, water & sand play area plus a massive zipline are the reasons this playground is so popular. The playground also includes more than 30 shade trees, seating, lawn, and picnic areas.

Where Parents Can Find It: 1455 Quebec Street (adjacent to Science World), Vancouver

Rochester Park

Rochester Park in Coquitlam

Photo credit: Mark Follett

What Kids Love: A stand out feature of the Rochester Park playground is the fact it appeals to a wide variety of ages. From the toddler section with climbing structures, slides and a sand pit, to the “bigger” kids climbing wonderland, kids of all ages will be thoroughly entertained here. There is also a skate park with rails and a water / spray park. Parents will also appreciate the covered picnic areas and close-proximity washrooms.

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Where Parents Can Find It: 1300 Rochester Avenue, Coquitlam