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The best NYC parks with splash pads and spraygrounds

Where to take your kids to cool off in NYC

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In the dog days of summer, New Yorkers seeking ways to cool down have a good number of options—beaches, pools, and plenty of sites that have A/C (and don’t charge a fee to take advantage of it).

And for the smallest New Yorkers (and their parents), there are dozens of playgrounds around the city with spray showers, offering another way to cool off when temperatures soar above 80 degrees. These range from extremely minimal—a single sprinkler on a playground is common—to wildly elaborate, such as a cool nautical-themed “sprayground” in the Rockaways, or the educational Water Lab in Brooklyn Bridge Park.

It’s a good bet that there’s a spray shower at your neighborhood playground, but if you’re looking for more to do than just stand under a sprinkler, read on for some of the cooler splash pads and spraygrounds in the city.

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1. Imagination Playground

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Front St
New York, NY 10038
(212) 639-9675
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Architect David Rockwell designed this playground close to the South Street Seaport, where unstructured play—made possible with lots of big, movable blocks—is the whole point. There are jets of water where kids can splash, and umbrellas for parents who want to stay in the shade.

2. Pier 25 at Hudson River Park

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West St
New York, NY 10013
(347) 756-5813
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Hudson River Park’s longest pier has a wide array of kid-friendly activities, including mini-golf, a skate park, and a climbing wall. There are also a bunch of sprinklers and spray showers, a necessity on super-hot days.

3. Washington Square Park

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(212) 639-9675
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The fountain at Washington Square Park is an icon, and one that gets packed in the summer with New York kiddos (and the young at heart) looking to cool off. It’s often crowded, but also has plenty of space.

4. Chelsea Waterside Park

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557 W 23rd St
New York, NY 10011
(212) 639-9675
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This Chelsea playground reopened in 2018 after a renovation by Michael Van Valkenburgh & Associates, and now has a bunch of nifty elements—slides, climbing areas, and more—inspired by the nearby Hudson River. The splash pad has jets and sprinklers that’ll help both little and big kids cool off.

Max Giuliani/Hudson River Park Trust

5. Heckscher Playground

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65th St Transverse
New York, NY 10019
(212) 310-6600
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Central Park has plenty of playgrounds with splash pads and spray showers, but Heckscher Playground on the park’s southern end is one of the best (and most popular), thanks to several different water features—sprinklers, jets, and streams—where kids of all ages can play.

6. Discovery Playground

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Hudson River Greenway
New York, NY 10032
(212) 639-9675
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Discovery Playground in Fort Washington Park got a facelift a few years ago, and now has a natural theme that includes a climbable treehouse and a rope bridge. There are also sprinklers and a water fountain, and while you’re there, you can take a detour to the Little Red Lighthouse—a must-visit for city kids.

7. Roberto Clemente State Park

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301 W Tremont Ave
The Bronx, NY 10453
(718) 299-8750
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There are a lot of ways to cool off at this South Bronx state park, located on the banks of the Harlem River: an Olympic-sized swimming pool, a waterfront esplanade (which recently benefited from a $100 million renovation to the park), and a cool splash pad area that has jets, sprinklers, and plenty of space for kids to run around.

Courtesy of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office

8. Crotona Park

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1700 Crotona Ave
The Bronx, NY 10457
(212) 639-9675
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Bring the whole family to Crotona Park, which has an impressively big splash pad adjacent to its Olympic-sized swimming pool. The pool is great for adults and bigger kids, while the splash pad—which has big geyers and sprinklers—has plenty of ways for little kids to cool off.

9. Travers Park

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76-9 34th Ave
Jackson Heights, NY 11372
(212) 639-9675
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The playground at Travers Park in Jackson Heights has a few different water elements, including jets that shoot up, and large leaf-shaped sprinklers that spray water all over the kids beneath them.

NYC Parks Department/Daniel Avila

10. Playground For All Children

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11101 Corona Ave
Corona, NY 11368
(718) 699-4201
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The Playground for All Children in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park was groundbreaking when it opened in 1984, with features “designed to accommodate children using crutches, canes, walkers, or wheelchairs, and to provide many opportunities for social, cognitive, sensory and motor activity,” according to the NYC Parks Department. One of those is a Water Wheel area, which had some shady spots and plenty of jets and sprinklers for kids to cool off.

11. Beach 30th Street Playground

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1-09 Beach 30th St
Far Rockaway, NY 11691
(718) 318-4000
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Just steps from Rockaway Beach is this playground with a cool nautical theme. It’s one of the more expansive spray grounds, with cooling jets that kids can run through, along with water cannons and a climbable boat.

12. Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 6

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334 Furman St
Brooklyn, NY 11201
(718) 222-9939
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One of Brooklyn Bridge Park’s most popular spots is the Water Lab at Pier 6, which has pools, sprinklers, and streams for kids to enjoy.

Jeffrey Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

13. Domino Park

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300 Kent Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11249
(212) 484-2700
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Domino Park, the waterfront open space that’s part of the Domino Sugar Refinery redevelopment, doesn’t have much in the way of shade. But it does have a fountain with 88 separate water jets where kids can splash and cool off (just don’t forget the sunscreen). Other park features include a playground designed by Mark Reigelman that has slides, climbing elements, and more.

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14. J.J. Byrne Playground

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3rd St. & 5th Ave, Washington Park
Brooklyn, NY 11215
(212) 639-9675
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One of Park Slope’s most popular playgrounds has a cool splash pad with water cannons, streams, jets, and rocks for kids to climb on (which can get slippery, so be careful!).

15. LeFrak Center at Lakeside Prospect Park Brooklyn

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171 East Dr
Brooklyn, NY 11225
(718) 462-0010
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The outdoor section of the ice-skating rink at Prospect Park transforms into a massive splash pad in the summertime, with 20 water jets and lots of space for kids (under 12 only!) to play.

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1. Imagination Playground

Front St, New York, NY 10038

Architect David Rockwell designed this playground close to the South Street Seaport, where unstructured play—made possible with lots of big, movable blocks—is the whole point. There are jets of water where kids can splash, and umbrellas for parents who want to stay in the shade.

Front St
New York, NY 10038

2. Pier 25 at Hudson River Park

West St, New York, NY 10013

Hudson River Park’s longest pier has a wide array of kid-friendly activities, including mini-golf, a skate park, and a climbing wall. There are also a bunch of sprinklers and spray showers, a necessity on super-hot days.

West St
New York, NY 10013

3. Washington Square Park

New York, NY 10012

The fountain at Washington Square Park is an icon, and one that gets packed in the summer with New York kiddos (and the young at heart) looking to cool off. It’s often crowded, but also has plenty of space.

4. Chelsea Waterside Park

557 W 23rd St, New York, NY 10011
Max Giuliani/Hudson River Park Trust

This Chelsea playground reopened in 2018 after a renovation by Michael Van Valkenburgh & Associates, and now has a bunch of nifty elements—slides, climbing areas, and more—inspired by the nearby Hudson River. The splash pad has jets and sprinklers that’ll help both little and big kids cool off.

557 W 23rd St
New York, NY 10011

5. Heckscher Playground

65th St Transverse, New York, NY 10019

Central Park has plenty of playgrounds with splash pads and spray showers, but Heckscher Playground on the park’s southern end is one of the best (and most popular), thanks to several different water features—sprinklers, jets, and streams—where kids of all ages can play.

65th St Transverse
New York, NY 10019

6. Discovery Playground

Hudson River Greenway, New York, NY 10032

Discovery Playground in Fort Washington Park got a facelift a few years ago, and now has a natural theme that includes a climbable treehouse and a rope bridge. There are also sprinklers and a water fountain, and while you’re there, you can take a detour to the Little Red Lighthouse—a must-visit for city kids.

Hudson River Greenway
New York, NY 10032

7. Roberto Clemente State Park

301 W Tremont Ave, The Bronx, NY 10453
Courtesy of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office

There are a lot of ways to cool off at this South Bronx state park, located on the banks of the Harlem River: an Olympic-sized swimming pool, a waterfront esplanade (which recently benefited from a $100 million renovation to the park), and a cool splash pad area that has jets, sprinklers, and plenty of space for kids to run around.

301 W Tremont Ave
The Bronx, NY 10453

8. Crotona Park

1700 Crotona Ave, The Bronx, NY 10457

Bring the whole family to Crotona Park, which has an impressively big splash pad adjacent to its Olympic-sized swimming pool. The pool is great for adults and bigger kids, while the splash pad—which has big geyers and sprinklers—has plenty of ways for little kids to cool off.

1700 Crotona Ave
The Bronx, NY 10457

9. Travers Park

76-9 34th Ave, Jackson Heights, NY 11372
NYC Parks Department/Daniel Avila

The playground at Travers Park in Jackson Heights has a few different water elements, including jets that shoot up, and large leaf-shaped sprinklers that spray water all over the kids beneath them.

76-9 34th Ave
Jackson Heights, NY 11372

10. Playground For All Children

11101 Corona Ave, Corona, NY 11368

The Playground for All Children in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park was groundbreaking when it opened in 1984, with features “designed to accommodate children using crutches, canes, walkers, or wheelchairs, and to provide many opportunities for social, cognitive, sensory and motor activity,” according to the NYC Parks Department. One of those is a Water Wheel area, which had some shady spots and plenty of jets and sprinklers for kids to cool off.

11101 Corona Ave
Corona, NY 11368

11. Beach 30th Street Playground

1-09 Beach 30th St, Far Rockaway, NY 11691

Just steps from Rockaway Beach is this playground with a cool nautical theme. It’s one of the more expansive spray grounds, with cooling jets that kids can run through, along with water cannons and a climbable boat.

1-09 Beach 30th St
Far Rockaway, NY 11691

12. Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 6

334 Furman St, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Jeffrey Greenberg/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

One of Brooklyn Bridge Park’s most popular spots is the Water Lab at Pier 6, which has pools, sprinklers, and streams for kids to enjoy.

334 Furman St
Brooklyn, NY 11201

13. Domino Park

300 Kent Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11249
Shutterstock

Domino Park, the waterfront open space that’s part of the Domino Sugar Refinery redevelopment, doesn’t have much in the way of shade. But it does have a fountain with 88 separate water jets where kids can splash and cool off (just don’t forget the sunscreen). Other park features include a playground designed by Mark Reigelman that has slides, climbing elements, and more.

300 Kent Ave
Brooklyn, NY 11249

14. J.J. Byrne Playground

3rd St. & 5th Ave, Washington Park, Brooklyn, NY 11215

One of Park Slope’s most popular playgrounds has a cool splash pad with water cannons, streams, jets, and rocks for kids to climb on (which can get slippery, so be careful!).

3rd St. & 5th Ave, Washington Park
Brooklyn, NY 11215

15. LeFrak Center at Lakeside Prospect Park Brooklyn

171 East Dr, Brooklyn, NY 11225

The outdoor section of the ice-skating rink at Prospect Park transforms into a massive splash pad in the summertime, with 20 water jets and lots of space for kids (under 12 only!) to play.

171 East Dr
Brooklyn, NY 11225