City, county parks and playgrounds
When you're looking for something fun and inexpensive to do, check out one of these parks.
We're lucky here in North Carolina to have gorgeous weather and great parks. And if you're looking for a cheap and easy way to have some fun, explore a park with your kids. Here are links to park systems across the Triangle, along with some parks you shouldn't miss.
But that doesn't mean there aren't other great parks across the Triangle. We'll be reviewing local parks here on a regular basis on Fridays. Just check our resource pages for "park and playground reviews" for the latest. And don't miss our resource pages on "state parks."
This list is arranged by the largest systems first: Raleigh, Cary, Durham, Wake County and Chapel Hill. The rest are listed alphabetically.
Raleigh offers the Triangle's largest municipal parks systems with playgrounds; trails; ball fields; lakes; and pools. Check out: The programs at Durant Nature Park; the carousels at Pullen Park (closed until 2011) and Chavis Park; and Shelly Lake's trail and playground.
Cary has one of the best park systems in the Triangle with great playgrounds, trails and more. Check out: The innovative Kids Together Playground at Marla Dorrel Park; the climbing boulders at North Cary Park; and the trails and education center at Hemlock Bluffs.
Wake offers seven parks across the county with playgrounds, park programs for kids, camps and more. Check out: The grist mill at Historic Yates Mill County Park and the playground, nature center and lake at Blue Jay Point County Park.
The town offers a full range of parks, playgrounds, pools, recreation centers and other facilities. There are also a variety of classes, camps and programs for kids. Check out: The natural beauty of West Point on the Eno Park and the popular spraygrounds in the summer.
The town offers a variety of parks, playgrounds, trails, sports programs and classes for kids. Check out: The Chapel Hill Skate Park and the Homestead Aquatics Center.
Apex offers parks, camps, programs for kids and more. Check out: The giant castle-like playground called Kidstowne at Kelly Road Park.
The system has a park, athletic complex and its Benson Singing Grove Building and Stage, which features live performances. There also are programs and sports leagues.
The town has four parks, a community center and a variety of classes, leagues and programs for kids and families.
The joint city-county system has a variety of community centers, parks and trails. The systems offers programs, sports leagues and special events for kids. There's even a transportation museum.
The town offers more than a dozen parks, including the Carroll Howard Johnson Environmental Education Park with walking trails and an amphitheater and Fuquay Mineral Spring Park, which features a restored spring house.
The town has nearly a dozen parks, including the 96-acre White Deer Park with five shelters, two playgrounds, paved trails and a nature center.
The town offers small neighborhood parks, larger community parks and some big natural areas. Check out: The Historic Occoneechee Speedway Trail, which takes you to one of the only remaining NASCAR tracks from the 1949 inaugural season. You'll see remnants of the concessions and grandstand.
The town offers a full range of sports and other programs for kids. Don't miss its Holly Springs Cultural Center with regular performances for families.
Most of the town's recreation activities are focused on the Kenly Area Parks and Recreation Center, which includes ball fields, batting cages, tennis courts and more.
The town offers a variety of facilities and programs for families, including one of the few municipal teen centers in the Triangle called "The Place."
The town has six parks and other recreational facilities and offers programs and classes for kids. Check out: The pool and equipment at the Morrisville Aquatics & Fitness Center.
The online database allows you to search for parks in Orange County with specific amenities.
The county systems has about six parks and recreation centers. Check out: The 391-acre Little River Regional Park.
The town has two parks, lots of trails and sports leagues for kids and adults.
The town offers several parks, fields and other spaces for recreation. It also includes classes and programs for families, special events and sports leagues.
The system includes an aquatic center, programs and classes for kids, and athletic leagues.
The town has a variety of parks, playgrounds, trails and athletic fields where they offer a host of programs, sports leagues and special events. Don't miss: The playground and pool at Holding Park in downtown Wake Forest.
The town offers programs, classes and athletic leagues at its facilities.
The town has four parks and offers camps and programs for kids starting at preschoolers and up.