Whether you live in Portland or you’re just visiting, you might be looking for some fun, inexpensive ways to get your family out of the house with spring so close around the bend. Portland has some of the most beautiful city parks in the country, and many of these parks feature the best playgrounds in Portland.
As part of Portland’s mission to incorporate as many inclusive play areas in their parks as the city can offer, many of the playgrounds in this list offer wheelchair-accessible play equipment, picnic areas, and restrooms. In addition to this, there are sensory-rich activity centers that welcome visitors of all capabilities, including those with developmental delays.
You’ll find that the Portland Parks and Recreation Department outdoes itself when it comes to providing open, beautiful parks with engaging playgrounds to attract all sorts of visitors. From small children to adults that want a place to mingle, to pets in need of outdoor activity, these playgrounds are designed with the intent of pleasing every person who steps inside.
Best North Portland Parks
1. Munchkin Playland
This park is aimed at providing an indoor play area for young children and an area where their parents can have a cup of coffee and mingle with other adults. Because the playground is situated inside a café, it gives children an opportunity to play and have fun even when the weather outside isn’t ideal. This feature is part of what makes Munchkin Playland one of the best playgrounds in Portland.
There are several structures to climb on for kids, and Stumptown coffee, Marsee Baking, and several other eating options. To top it off, the playground offers wi-fi.
Munchkin Playland is open from 9:00 am to 5:00 pm Monday through Friday, and reservations are available for children’s parties.
2. Pirate Park, one of the Best Portland Parks
Part of the Rock Creek Greenway and formerly known as the Bethany Meadow Park, Pirate Park is a 16-acre area that offers a pirate ship themed playground as well as smaller structures for young children to play on.
Among the features of this park’s adventure-style playground are swing sets, several slides, climbing structures, and a sandpit.
Parents and children can access the playground along the Rock Creek Trail from the intersection with Waterhouse Trail. The playground is open from 6:00 am to 6:40 pm.
3. Harper’s Playground
Harper’s Playground was designed by the parents of a child with special needs, after seeing how she struggled to play on non-accessible playgrounds in the past. The key concept was to create a play area that offers all children an equal chance to enjoy themselves.
This all-inclusive play area began its planning in 2010 and became a community project shortly thereafter. After designs were complete, the playground was erected in Arbor Lodge Park, on Everett Street.
All play equipment and climbing structures at Harper’s Playground are accessible to children of all capabilities. This park goes above and beyond in its efforts to provide all children with a place to play, making it one of the best playgrounds in Portland.
Harper’s Playground is also a community-outreach park, with different projects happening frequently in order to engage public interest.
4. Dawson Park
Located on North Stanton Street and Williams Avenue, Dawson Park is a 2-acre play area that features playground equipment, a basketball court, paved walking paths and a picnic area. It also includes a splash pad, an outdoor stage, a public art area, and a volleyball court.
Dawson has accessible bathrooms and plays equipment for differently abled visitors. The park is open from 5:00 am to midnight and the splash pad will be active from 11:00 am to 7:00 pm between May and August.
5. Peninsula Park Playground, a lovely North Portland Park
This 16-acre park on North Rosa Parks Way includes amenities such as picnic areas, a basketball court, historical site, fountain, paved walking paths, and a plaza. It also features a playground, a horseshoe pit, sports fields, a splash pad, an outdoor stage, a public art area, and a tennis court.
Peninsula Park’s Playground offers accessible bathrooms and picnic areas for visitors with additional needs.
The playground is open from 5:00 am to midnight and the splash pad will be active from 11:00 am to 7:00 pm between May and August. The tennis court’s lights automatically turn off at 10:00 pm.
Best New Portland Playgrounds
6. Couch Park, one of the new Portland playgrounds
Couch Park, on 19th Avenue and Glisan Street, features two acres of outdoor recreation space. The lot features a new play area, off-leash area for pets, paved walking paths, plaza, and public art area.
The park has undergone renovations and should have its new projects on the fencing, plaza, playground, and restrooms completed in the spring of 2019.
Couch Park’s playground is open from 5:00 am to midnight and has wheelchair accessible restrooms for visitor convenience. Though this is a relatively new, relatively small space for Portlandians, it’s earning a place as one of the best playgrounds in Portland.
7. The Fields Park (2010)
The Fields Park is one of Portland’s newest. Located in the Pearl District, this 3-acre park features sitting areas, walking paths, a plaza, restrooms, an off-leash area for pets, open greenery, and a large playground.
This park was designed with both parents and pet-owners in mind, as it not only has plenty of playground structures to engage children but one of the largest play areas for dogs as well.
The play area, picnic area, and restrooms are all wheelchair accessible for the inclusion of differently-abled visitors.
The playground at Fields Park is open from 5:00 am to midnight
8. Westmoreland Park (2004)
Westmoreland Park’s playground, located in the Sellwood and Moreland neighborhoods on Southeast McLoughlin and Bybee Blvds, was renovated between 2013 and early 2014, opening again in September of 2014. The idea of the new design was to implement natural features as well as encouraging creative play in children.
There are 43 acres of this park to enjoy.
The park features amenities such as a baseball field, basketball court, football field, play area, paved and unpaved walking paths, a picnic area, softball field, soccer field, public art area, and tennis court.
The park’s restrooms are wheelchair accessible for visitor convenience.
Westmoreland Park is open from 5:00 am to midnight.
9. Holly Farm Park (2003)
Located on Southwest Capitol Highway, Holly Farm Park is one of Portland’s smaller parks, at only 1.72 acres of space. Despite this, Holly Farm features a BEECN unit for earthquake emergencies, paved walking paths, a playground, a plaza, and a 2,800 sqft skatepark.
The playground, picnic area, and restrooms are each wheelchair accessible for differently-abled individuals looking to enjoy the outdoors. This is one of the best playgrounds in Portland when it comes to places to picnic.
Holly Farm Park is open from 5:00 am to midnight.
Parks Near Portland Airport
Though each of the playgrounds in the section is not technically located in the city of Portland, each entry is less than a 45-minute drive from Portland’s city limits, all parks near Portland Airport.
10. Ardenwald Park
Milwaukie is only a few minutes’ drives out of Portland, so if you’ve got the time or you happen to be in the area, stop by Ardenwald and let the kids enjoy some playtime at this little 1-acre community park.
Ardenwald Park, just across the street from Ardenwald Elementary on Southeast Roswell Street, features a picnic area and a play area for visitors to enjoy.
The playground is open for visitor enjoyment from 8:00 am to 9:00 pm every day. Ardenwald also hosts its Concerts in the Park event each Thursday during the month of August.
11. Atfalati Park
If you’re near Tualatin, just outside of Portland, you’re going to want to make a stop here to check out what this park has to offer.
Atfalati Park, located on Southwest Sagert Street, is a 14-acre park that offers both a play area and opportunities to interact with the natural aspects of the land.
There are two playgrounds to choose from, one for small children, one for older children. The park also has a basketball court, tennis courts, and miscellaneous sports fields, one of which can be reserved for special events.
Atfalati Park is open 24 hours a day for visitor convenience. Park reservations can be made online, or by calling the Parks Department during normal business hours.
12. Hillendale Park
Located on Clairmont Way in Oregon City, Hillendale Park features 16 acres of walking trails, grassy areas, a small creek, observation deck, children’s play structures, tennis court, basketball court, soccer and softball fields, sand volleyball area, and wetlands preservation area.
The park has restroom facilities onsite and operates from Monday to Friday, 8:00 am to 4:00 pm. Regular park hours are from 5:00 am to 10:00 pm.
13. Murase Plaza Park
The Murase Plaza Park in Wilsonville was recently renovated in 2015, which provided visitors with two new structures in the play area, as well as a new embankment slide.
Much of the park’s features are accessible to visitors with physical and developmental disabilities, providing an inclusive area for children to play. Two restroom areas are onsite, but only the facilities closest to the playground are open throughout the year.
Murase Plaza Park is open from 5:00 am to 10:00 pm.
14. Chapin Park
Located on Warner Parrott Road in Oregon City, 18-acre Chapin Park often hosts a majority of the city’s sporting events. The area features walking paths, children’s play areas, a softball field, a soccer field, a reservable shelter, and restroom facilities.
Chapin Park is open from Monday to Friday, 8:00 am to 4:00 pm.
Playgrounds of the Portland Parks and Recreation
15. Dickinson Park
Dickinson Park is an 18-acre open area located on Southwest 55th Avenue and Alfred Court, including both a playground and an open nature area. Pets are also permitted in Dickinson Park, so visitors can take the kids to play and get their four-legged friends healthy exercise at the same time. When it comes to things to do in Portland, a place for both pets and kids really does help involve the whole family.
The park operates from 5:00 am to midnight.
16. Overlook Park Playground is one of the Best Playgrounds in Portland
Overlook Park’s Playground is located on North Fremont and Interstate Avenue and features 10 acres of outdoor space for activities. Amenities include picnic areas, a baseball field, basketball court, off-leash area for pets, paved and unpaved walking trails, a soccer field, softball field, volleyball court, running track, and playground.
Both the picnic areas and the restrooms are wheelchair accessible for visitor convenience. Overlook Park is open from 5:00 am to midnight.
17. Lair Hill Park
Lair Hill Park is one of Portland’s smaller-sized parks, despite the many features it offers. Located on Southwest 2nd Avenue and Woods Street, Lair Hill Park offers visitors paved walking paths, a public art area, tennis backboard, and court, a picnic area, and BEECN node for earthquake emergencies. Though it is smaller, the added safety and inclusive features make Lair Hill Park one of the best playgrounds in Portland.
The play area is wheelchair accessible for visitor convenience and inclusion of differently-abled children. The park’s merry-go-round has rubberized surfaces for safety, has engineered mulch ground, sensory play elements, and accessible picnicking areas.
Lair Hill is open from 5:00 am to midnight.
18. Lents Park
Lents Park, located on Southeast 92nd Avenue and Holgate Blvd is a 38-acre park that provides the public with picnic areas, a baseball field, basketball court, BEECN node for earthquake emergencies, off-leash pet area, football field, paved and unpaved walking paths, a horseshoe pit, soccer field, softball field, tennis backboard and court, and a playground.
The picnic, play, and restroom areas are all wheelchair accessible for visitors with physical disabilities so that visitors and Portlandians of all capabilities can get outside and enjoy Portland’s natural beauty.
The park is open from 5:00 am to midnight.
19. For Things to Do in Portland, visit Woodstock Park
Woodstock Park is located on East 47th Avenue and Steele Street and presents 14 acres of open space in which visitors can enjoy their time spent outside.
The park’s features include a BEECN node for earthquake emergencies, an off-leash dog area, horseshoe pit, paved walking paths, a picnic area, soccer field, softball field, public art area, tennis court, and a playground.
Both the restrooms at Woodstock Park and the play area are wheelchair accessible for differently-abled visitors.
The park is open from 5:00 am to midnight.
As you can see, each of the best playgrounds in Portland is unique, and they each offer appealing features. With accessibility and safety being key concepts in the planning of these play areas, you can rest assured that your children are going to have a good time playing outside in a secure environment and that as adult guardians, you’re likely to have some form of entertainment available to pass the time. Portland’s parks are deeply rooted in nature and they bring together all of the city’s organic beauty as well as the innovation that went into creating playgrounds that people truly want to visit.
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