Check out these playgrounds when you’re touring towns
Playgrounds are an amazing way to explore suburbia. If you’re moving to the ‘burbs with kids in tow, your weekends will no doubt be spent swinging, sliding, and running around your neighborhood park — by checking them out now, you’ll get a glimpse of your future weekends, while having a chance to chat up moms and dads who live locally.
While there are countless parks and playgrounds in the Philadelphia ‘burbs, we’ve rounded up a few of our faves. If you’re touring these family-friendly communities, grab a picnic lunch from a local restaurant or cafe, hunker down, and let your kids burn off some town-tour steam before heading back to the city — or to the next suburb on your must-see list.
#1. The Narberth Playground (Narberth)
If yours is a sporty family, you’ll no doubt spend lots of time at the Narberth Playground. Filled with all things sports — tennis courts, basketball, softball and baseball fields, volleyball, soccer, and football fields, Narberth plays host to youth and adult sports (almost) year-round. And when there aren’t scheduled games? Grab a ball and go — fields and courts are open to local residents.
That, though, is just a piece of the park experience. Narberth also has an incredible playground with newly-renovated equipment for kids of all ages. There’s also plenty of shady spots to cool off, have a bite or just kick back and relax. Plus — parents rejoice! — there are very well-maintained bathrooms on site.
The playground is also home to community events such as the July 4th fireworks.
#2. South Ardmore Park (Wynnewood)
This park was designed for safety — and fun! Fully fenced-in with 12” of woodchip padding, this Wynnewood go-to has something for every kid.
South Ardmore is home to a playground with climbing, sliding, and gliding equipment as well as tennis and basketball courts, a baseball field, and, yes, bathrooms. What’s more, since this playground is set in a quiet residential neighborhood, it’s a perfect spot to meet up with other families and enjoy a low-key weekend afternoon — the kids can play while parents catch up on the ample benches around the playground perimeter. The best part: it’s shady.
#3. Ashbridge Memorial Park (Bryn Mawr)
There’s so much to do at Ashbridge Memorial Park. Settle into a shady spot for a quick snack break, roam around the walking path, grab a racquet, or head to the playground to run and play. Have a little climber on your hands? Check out the rock wall and climbing net. There’s also equipment for smaller kids, too, with bouncing and a music station.
#4. Wentz Run Park (Blue Bell)
Live in or around Blue Bell and Wentz Run Park will become a warmer-weather hotspot. Whether your kids love to run and play on the all-ages playground or your little athletes participate in town sports, Wentz Run Park houses it all — plus a fully-equipped concession stand and picnic pavilion open from April to October.
That, though, is just a piece of this expansive park. Here, you’ll find a 1.75-mile exercise trail, horseshoe pits, open fields, and a sand volleyball court round out this fun family destination.
#5. Mondauk Common (Ambler)
This park is perfect for active families. In addition to the massive playground onsite, there’s a one-mile track for walkers and runners that weaves through fields and a beautiful pine tree forest. For kids who aren’t interested in staying the course, head to the open fields and let them run and play — there’s ample space for everyone, and shady spots ideal for snagging a bite before heading to their next activity.
Also at Mondauk: picnic pavilions, ball fields, sand volleyball courts, and lots of parking just steps from the entrance.
#6. Freedom Playground (Haverford)
Freedom Playground is a true destination park. This 100% volunteer-built playground was designed to be accessible to all kids — and, unlike most parks, has a dog park on site, so even your four-legged family members can get in on the action.
In addition to park faves, Freedom Playground offers miles of hiking and walking trails that wind through tall trees and a stream, plus playing fields, and a picnic pavilion. And the playground? It’s second to none with classic playground equipment plus a bridge maze, sand table, musical instruments, and a tire swing.
#7. Tot Lot (Media)
Perfect for toddlers and preschoolers, in particular, Tot Lot is a fully-fenced park that includes tons of little kid-friendly go-tos — a squishy surface ideal for crawlers and new walkers, smaller-sized equipment, and more. And if you have older kids? Don’t worry — there’s plenty of fun things to do for big kids, too.
#8. Pocopson Park (West Chester)
With tons of space to run and play, Pocopson Park is a perfect destination for families. This 14-year-old playground includes a tot lot and “spiderweb” ideal for 5-12-year-olds. For younger climbers, head to the horse-shaped climber — a nod to the town’s history.
Beyond just the playground and open fields, Pocopson offers a variety of fitness stations, sports fields and bleachers, a shaded picnic pavilion, and community grills. For cyclists, head across the street for a paved bike trail that runs to Lenape-Unionville Road.
#9. Kids Castle (Doylestown)
This eight-story wooden playground was designed and named by local Doylestown kids in 1996 — their drawings, creative designs, and artwork inspired everything from the equipment to the activities to, ultimately, the “castle” moniker.
While aimed at older kids, Kid’s Castle also has smaller swings and equipment for toddlers.
#10. Kids Kingdom Playground (Yardley)
Another medieval-themed playground in Bucks County, this castle-inspired playground offers lots of amazing equipment for kids of all ages. During warmer months, members can take a dip in the Olympic-size pool with a diving board, lap pool, and baby pools, and snack bar. There are also lighted tennis courts, ball fields, sand volleyball, and a nature trail.
#11. Jake’s Place (Cherry Hill, NJ)
An epic playground in Cherry Hill, Jake’s Place is an all-inclusive playground with cushioned synthetic surfaces and wide ramps throughout the park, ensuring kids in wheelchairs and other assisted devices can easily move from station to station.
Once inside the playground expect everything — bridges, stepping circles, balance beams, bucket-seat swings, gliders, rock walls, and freestanding play areas. There are also plenty of benches, picnic tables, and shaded spots, plus a grilling pavilion open to everyone.
#12. Mountwell Park Playground (Haddonfield, NJ)
What’s not to love about Mountwell Park Playground? With plenty of low-to-the-ground swings so little kids can easily hop on and off, three play areas, tons of slides, ride-on toys, and a sand area, there’s no doubt something that will capture your kids’ attention from the minute you arrive. And with picnic tables and benches around and in the middle of the play area, it’s easy to keep eyes on kids while having a quick bite or finishing that AM cup of cold brew.
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