Best Parks in Des Moines


parks in Des Moines

There are so many great parks to explore in Des Moines. We narrowed it down to 6 of our favorite Des Moines parks (plus 4 honorable mentions). They are great for all ages and feature a variety of unique features. 

Check out our Guide to Des Moines Parks for more! 

Looking for a park in Ames? Check out 3 of our favorite parks in Ames

Best Parks in Des Moines Area

Riverview Park Des MoinesRiverview Park, Des Moines

710 Corning Ave, Des Moines

This park has an amusement park theme and is on the North side of Des Moines, near North High School. Kids can climb on a ferris wheel, ride bumper cars, climb a roller coaster track, and more. It also has an outdoor music venue and walking loop. The park is down a hill from McHenry Park, which includes a fun splashpad

Alice Nizzi Park WaukeeAlice Nizzi, Waukee

A spaghetti theme makes this park unique. Imagine “spinning” noodles on a fork, climbing a meatball, and hanging from a bowl of pasta. It’s a great park for kids who love to climb. This neighborhood park has street parking and benches but no bathrooms or picnic tables. 

Terra Park JohnstonTerra Park, Johnston

6400 Pioneer Parkway, Johnston

This accessible park includes plenty of ares for kids to climb and explore. The fishing lake is stocked with largemouth bass, channel catfish, and bluegills. Terra Park has a shelter with bathrooms, native plantings, a fishing pier, and connects to bike trails. 

Ironwood Park AltoonaIronwood Park, Altoona

2222 3rd Ave SW, Altoona

Dubbed the “Pirate Park” this park features a pirate design where kids can “walk the plank”, sail on a ship, and take a picture with the giant Moai statue. 

Ashley Okland ParkAshley Okland Park, Des Moines

1895 E McKinley Ave, Des Moines

This all-inclusive playground has shade umbrellas over parts of it making it great for sunny days. It has a spiderweb and honeycomb structure for kids to climb, swings, and lots of slides. When you’re done playing at the park, explore the surrounding trails in Ewing Park. 

Miracle Park AnkenyMiracle Park, Ankeny

310 NW School St, Ankeny

Don’t miss Ankeny’s largest playground! This all-inclusive park features roller tables, sway gliders, a sensory play center, and an omni spinner. There is limited shade at this park, so it’s best for cool, cloudy days. 

Honorable Mentions

Lauridsen Skate Park

The largest outdoor skate park in the country, located in downtown Des Moines. 

Ashby Park

This Beaverdale gem features a unique playground, splash pool, and walking trails. 

Greenwood Park 

This park, behind Bergman Academy, has a sprayground and a nice shady playground. 

Walker Johnson Park, Urbandale

Located in the heart of Urbandale, this park has a little bit of everything including a skate park, observation tower, tennis courts, swings, slides, pond, and more! 

What’s your favorite park in Des Moines? 


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