Visiting the park with a toddler can be both a blessing and a curse. While a trip to a playground may be great for helping toddlers burn off some of their endless energy, playground sets can pose dangers to fearless toddlers. That's why parents of toddlers absolutely love finding a park with the holy grail of little kid park features: a toddler-sized playset, swings with leg holes and backs, soft ground for new walkers, etc. There are many great parks in Houston, but the list below features parks with plenty of options for parents who want to take their kids to the park and know that their toddlers and preschoolers can enjoy park equipment meant just for them.
4501 Woodway Drive
In the southwest corner of Memorial Park, the Houston Arboretum and Nature Center has built a new toddler playground for your little ones to enjoy! You can combine your playtime with a walk along the trails, where you can view a wide range of plants and animals. The Arboretum is home to a wide range of plants and animals, and you might spot rabbits, armadillos, squirrels, and even an alligator that lives in Meadow Pond!
6501 Memorial Drive
Nestled inside of Memorial Park, The Vale-Asche Foundation Playground is Houston's first Playground Without Limits type playground. This sensory-rich playground is perfectly formulated for children with hearing and sight impairments, allowing them to get a full-scale playground experience as they might not otherwise receive. It's also perfect for toddlers who thrive on sensory experiences.
700 Heights Boulevard, Houston
This gorgeous park in the heights features all wooden playground equipment, including a perfectly sized set for toddlers to enjoy. The toddler set includes the same features as the big kids' set, just in a miniature version, as well as a wooden train for toddlers to enjoy climbing on.
Related: Houston Accessible Playgrounds Where All Kids Can Play
Playing on the giant tire swings at Jerry Matheson Park. Photo by Carrie Taylor
1240 Ulrich Road
This 10-acre park located in Tomball features two playground areas, including one specifically designed for toddlers. In the toddler area, there is also a sandpit and plenty of shaded seating areas for adults to sit and supervise little ones. The play area intended for older kids is nearby, so parents of toddlers can keep an eye on big brothers and sisters playing as well.
15012 Brown Road
At Spring Creek Park, toddlers can enjoy a playground set with low slides and a train theme. Because the park also features campsites, there is a restroom with shower pavilion on site, which is great for parents of toddlers who may be potty training and prone to accidents.
27207 Robinson Road
The cute name tells you that this park is for tiny tots! Completely fenced in and offering play equipment for smaller children, it also boasts a pavilion for birthday parties, water fountains and restrooms.
Photo courtesy of firetruckparkfund.org
This adorable play structure in Southside Place features a fire truck motif and is perfectly sized for toddlers to play. A mini slide and small climbing obstacles make it ideal for toddlers to explore. Plus, the entire park is fenced in, in case your toddler likes to run.
Related: 16 Houston Parks with Lots of Shade
7500 Bay Area Boulevard
Bay Area Park features three sets of playground equipment, including one specifically for toddlers. The toddler area has multiple low-level slides for kids to enjoy, as well as fun elements like bongo drums and mini hanging rings. The toddler area also features tandem swings where parents can swing with their toddlers.
Clear Lake Park photo courtesy of Business YAB
5001 NASA Pkwy.
We have been visiting Clear Lake Park for the toddler equipment since my oldest son was just 18 months old. Both sides of the park have an area with playground equipment that is toddler sized, and there is plenty of green space for preschoolers to run or chase balls. The splash pad located at Clear Lake Park is also a great option for toddler play during the warmer months.
15020 Cinco Park Road
One of Houston's great destination parks, Exploration Park features an area with moveable blue foam blocks that toddlers can use to play and build. This park also features a variety of different types of swings, including some that even allow parents to swing with their toddlers.
5720 Franz Road
The all-inclusive Katy Play Station is a haven for kids of all ages and abilities. With climbing structures, several different types of swings, and a main play area modeled after the MKT Rail line train, toddlers and kids alike can play to their hearts' content.
Related: Houston Parks Perfect for Kids' Birthday Parties
Kids love playing on the shaded playgrounds at Challenger Seven Memorial Park. Photo by Ashley Jones
2301 W. NASA Boulevard
Of the three sets of playground equipment at Challenger Seven Memorial Park, one is sized just for toddlers. The miles and miles of trails at this park are jogging stroller-friendly and perfect for taking toddlers on long nature walks.
15913 Jersey Drive
This beautiful park in Jersey Village features a set of tandem swings where parents (or big kids) can swing with toddlers in a bucket seat. A giant sandpit and overturned monster truck tires are great for toddlers to explore, and a huge Noah's ark play structure is great for climbing.
Photo of River Oaks Park, courtesy of Mommy Poppins
3600 Locke Lane
Also known as "Pumpkin Park," this exciting park in River Oaks features a Cinderella-themed pumpkin carriage for toddlers to climb on. The park also hosts tons of toddler-friendly activities like mommy-and-me classes.
3012 Nottingham Street
Toddlers can enjoy an area just for them at Wier Park in West University. This shady park features Astroturf, which is great for toddlers who may still be a bit unsteady on their feet. The park is fenced in and features a play area for older kids as well.
7112 Newcastle Street
A sandpit filled with trucks and shovels keeps toddlers entertained at Russ Pitman Park for quite a while. Part of the larger play structure is low enough to accommodate toddlers as well and includes fun features like a set of drums.
Originally published April 22, 2019