UPDATED! I have put together a list of FREE Outdoor Parks, Splash Pads, Beaches, Farms & Zoos. Please note that some places may charge for parking. I chose the most unique looking parks and splash pads to list. Some of them I have not yet visited but I plan to take my children to as many as I can. If you are going to plan a beach visit, make sure to check online that it is safe to swim. I hope you enjoy and save lots and lots of money while still having a great time with your kids.
**FREE PUBLIC PARKS & SPLASH PADS**
*Chinguacousy Park (Brampton)
9050 Bramalea Road
Central Park Drive & Queen Street East
Free Parking (500 parking spaces on site)
Beach Volleyball Courts
Splash Pad: FREE
Barn Walkthrough: FREE
Petting Zoo: $1 per person
Mini Golf: $3.90 per person
Paddle Boats: $9 for 30 minutes
Merry Go Round: $3 per person
Train Rides: $5 per person
*Kidstown Water Playground (Scarborough)
3159 Birchmound Road
Kidstown is the only water park operated by the City of Toronto.
It is one of Scarborough’s most popular outdoor aquatic facilities for preschool and grade school children. It offers a variety of water features, including a tipping bucket, spray rings, squirting aquatic animals, a slide, wading pool, splash pad and so much more.
Playground on on site.
*Rocket Ship Park (Whitby)
Twin Streams Road
(Personal Photo: Courtesy of Entertain Kids reader Colleen Morris)
*Personal photo by Colleen Morris
*Earl Bales Park (North York)
4169 Bathurst Street
Walking and bike trails
*Jamie Bell Adventure Park (Toronto)
High Park Blvd.
(Entrance from Parkside Ave.)
*Kew Gardens (Toronto)
2075 Queen St East
Fun large tree house style playground
Short walk to the beach
*Corktown Common Playground (Toronto)
Very high slide,
*Little Norway Park (Toronto)
Bathurst Street and Queens Quay
children’s unique playground
many walking paths through gardens.
*Dufferin Grove Park (Toronto)
The Wading pool
an oval of sand about 20 feet wide by 40 feet long, ringed by big wooden logs. It was put into the park in 1993.
*Neshama Playground/Oriole Park (Toronto)
Near Davisville and Yonge
Large musical chimes
Spider web spinner that moves in circles
*Withrow Park (Toronto)
Carlaw (Major Intersection: South of Danforth at Carlaw)
Two outdoor tennis courts
Dog off-leash area
*Exhibition Park (Guelph)
70 Division Street
Playground with unique design
*Pier 4 Park (Hamilton)
64 Leander Drive
There’s an 80-foot tugboat play structure that is oriented to provide children with a full view of the water.
*Valleyridge Park (Oakville)
2524 Valleyridge Drive
*Lakefront Promenade Park (Mississauga)
800 Lakefront Promenade (off of Lakeshore Road East, east of Cawthra Road)
Licensed out door patio and grill.
*Madoc Skatepark (Madoc/Near Bellville)
11379 Highway #62, RR#5
•Large skate park
•Junior skate park for beginner levels
•3 Level high playground
•Skateboards, helmets, and bikes are available to rent
*The ROC (Keswick)
26479 Civic Centre Road
*Innisfil beach (Innisfil, ON)
$3 per hour
$15 per full day
*Centennial Beach (Barrie, ON)
65 Lakeshore Drive
Features: Sandy beach, Lifeguard, Washrooms, Accessible playground, Mini golf, Beach volleyball, Food concession, Parking lot, Walking distance to downtown, Paved 4-season multiuse recreation trail that is part of the Waterfront Trail and the Trans Canada Trail, Dogs are not permitted on waterfront parks.
*J.B. Tudhope Park (Orillia)
450 Atherly Road
Beach volleyball courts
2 lit baseball diamonds
Washrooms and fountains
*Couchiching Beach (Orillia)
140 Canice Street
Mini Train Rides (There is a small fee for the train)
*Blue Water Park (Wiarton)
402 William Street
•Outdoor swimming pool
•Historic train station
*Rogers Cove (Peterborough)
131 Maria Street
•Trans Canada Trail
•Supervised Beach (in the summer)
*Cobourg Beach (Cobourg)
Free Parking on Side Streets on Weekends
*Riverside Park (Guelph)
709 Woolwich Street
Antique carousel (extra charge)
Pedal Boats (extra charge)
Miniature train rides (extra charge)
Giant chess/checker game
Sand beach area
3 baseball diamond
*Beachway Park and Pavilion (Burlington)
The Beachway Park Pavilion and multi-use trails provide a 2 km route from Spencer Smith Park to the canal. The pavilion provides change rooms, outdoor showers, seasonal concession facilities featuring the Snack Shack and year round washrooms. Amenities at the beach include the pavilion, parking, a pay phone, a playground, and lots of sun, sand, and water.
*Lakeside Park (St. Catherine’s)
1 Lakeport Road
Heritage Carousel (5 cents per ride)
1,500 feet of sandy beach
Dressing area and washroom
*Beachfront Park & Millennium Square (Pickering, ON)
Southern end of Liverpool Road or Alex Robertson Park at the southern end of Sandy Beach Road.
Splash pad play area
(9:00am-9:00 pm, weather permitting)
2 beach volleyball courts
(nets hung daily during summer months)
Public washrooms (9am-9pm)
**To find out if the lakes are safe to swim in, go to www.theswimguide.org and in the search box type in the name of the beach.
**FARMS & ZOOS**
*Riverdale Farms (Toronto)
201 Winchester Street
This park features: Historic working farm, scenic pathways, programs and seasonal events, pig and poultry barn, historic Francey Barn, Simpson House, Meeting House, the “Residence”, Old Zoo Ruins.
*Lionel’s Farm (Stouffville)
11714 McCowan Road
Some of the animals that can be seen or touched are sheep, goats, pigs, cow, donkeys ponies, deer, llama, alpaca, rabbits, chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys, pigeons, pheasants, peacocks, and a various times throughout the year, many will have babies by their side. Our animals are curious and friendly and are a big hit with kids of all ages.
You can bring your own food to feed the animals: mini carrots, cut celery, lettuce, and/or bread.
*Pine Farms Orchard (King City)
2700, 16th Sideroad
This is my favourite place to pick apples. They have a small park, a few little animals, and a store filled with the tastiest food.
*Watsons Farm (Bowmanville)
2287 Regional Hwy 2
Tractor to climb on
Wagon Rides are offered during strawberry or apple picking seasons
*The Big Apple (Colborne, ON)
Off highway 401 at exit #497
Shuffle board, Bocce Ball & Ping Pong Tables
Mini Putt Golf
Large Apple Observatory
Animal Land (Chickens, Goats, Donkeys, Rabbits)
Country Store & Restaurant full of food and baked goods
*Riverview Park & Zoo (Peterborough)
1230 Water Street
The zoo features 27 exhibits, with over 48 species, including Yak, Camel, Wallaby, Emu, Macaw, Squirrel Monkey, Cougar, Plated Lizard, Meerkat and more!
The park covers 55.5 acres and is the largest and most diversified playground in the city. It also features equipment for physically-challenged children.
With a splash pad, frisbee golf course, walking trails, a miniature train ride, and beautiful gardens we have something for everyone.
*The Dutch Mill (Dundas)
533 Millgrove Road Side Road
There is a giant market that carried everything and a restaurant on site.
Free Petting Zoo
*Happy Rolph’s Animal Farm (St. Catherine’s)
650 Read Road
(Corner of Read Rd. and Northrup)
Animal viewing area
Picnic area and pavilion
9/11 Memorial Walkway Trail
The animals will be at Happy Rolph’s from Victoria Day weekend until Thanksgiving weekend.