Children's Recreation In Tempe
Tempe is right smack in the middle of the Valley's water recreation action. What's unique is that all the water adventure is nearby city convenience. There's no reason for long drives and big hassles. Tempe is a family fun place in a college town where both young and old can have a blast.
Tempe Beach Park
Tempe Beach Park is a 25 acre park with winding pathways for casual jogging, picnic groves and large sandy beaches. Children will enjoy playing around at Splash Playground, a one acre area where kids learn how a drop of rain falls from the sky and ends up either in the ocean or becomes part of the Tempe water supply. Kids and families enter the playground through a metal circle of clouds that rains a light mist of water. Thunder claps, lightning flashes and waterfalls turn into streams that rush into canals. Tempe Beach Park is located just north of the Tempe Downtown Mill Avenue District.
Tempe Town Lake
Tempe Town Lake is a 220 acre urban oasis that sets in the shadows of Sun Devil Football Stadium, home of the Arizona State University Sun Devils and the Annual Insight Bowl. Enjoy all the water recreation you can handle whether its kicking back and people-watching, kayaking, sailing, rowing, fishing, renting a pedal boat or relaxing on a dinner cruise. Boat rentals and kayaks are available form Rio Lago Cruise located right on the shore of Tempe Town Lake.
Families, college students and residents of the high rise condos that overlook the lake become invigorated with fitness conditioning with running, biking, and in-line skating along five miles of paved trails on the meandering shores of the lake.
Papago Park is located just across the Salt river from Mill Avenue in downtown. Discover the natural beauty of rock formations and an archaeological site. The park features a softball field, a lagoon and picnic ramadas as well as hiking and biking trails in a natural desert setting.
Kiwanis Community Park
Another great option is Kiwanis Community Park, 125 acres of nothing but family fun. It features a large lagoon beneath rolling grass hills and large shade trees surrounded by jogging and bike trails that encircle the lake. Find your favorite fishing spot and test your luck catching largemouth bass, catfish, carp and blue gill. The park also features an indoor wave pool, water slide and gymnasium and even batting cages. Outdoor recreation includes picnic ramadas, 15 lighted tennis courts, volleyball courts and built-in barbecue grills.
Big Surf Tempe
Big Surf is the premier water park in the Phoenix area and is sometimes called "Waikiki Beach." There is a wave pool and several themed areas each geared to kids of differing age groups. Check out the 15 Main Event water slide and the "Tahitian Twisters" which are for the younger kids. "Hurricane Falls" is ready for those that can handle the wild water slides. This the place to be for families when the summer heat begins to arrive.
Makutu's Island is actually in Chandler which borders Tempe to the north. It is a 20,000 square foot, multi-level indoor playground with several themed game areas. This a great place to hold birthday parties.
The Phoenix Zoo is just north of Tempe across the Tempe Bridge in the heart of Papago Park off of Galvin Parkway. The zoo includes over 1,200 animals in different theme zones and about 2.5 miles of walking trails.