Where to Beat the Heat in the Triangle: A Guide to Splash Pads in the Raleigh-Durham area

The JAG Team

One of the things that people learn very quickly after moving to the Triangle is that the heat can be especially brutal during the summertime, which can be especially taxing on kids and families. Throughout the Raleigh-Durham metro area, there are many splash pads and spray grounds, which are great places to cool off while having some family fun. 

Moore Square Splash Pad– Downtown Raleigh

Built during the 2019 renovation of Moore Square, the splash pad adds a family-friendly element to this urban park. This park was originally created in 1792 as one of four urban parks in the city of Raleigh. Currently, the park hosts a number of events weekly, and children often take advantage of the splash pad while there. 

Chavis Community Park Splash Pad– Southeast Raleigh

Located in the John Chavis Memorial Park, this splash pad was constructed as part of the park’s facelift, completed in 2021. The park itself was opened in 1938 and was one of the state’s first urban parks to serve the Black community. The recent updates also include a playground, gymnasium, and two-story community center. 

Fuquay Varina Splash Pad– Fuquay Varina

The Fuquay Varina Splash Pad, located inside South Park, is a great spot for a day of water-based play. Open to residents for free and non-residents for $2 a day, this 6,000 square foot splash pad has a great variety of features, including water guns, dumping buckets, and misting tunnels. 

Jack Smith Park is the home to splash pad action in the Town of Cary. The giant water buckets, shooting jets from the grounds, and water guns add some extra entertainment to the sprayground, with a dry playground nearby for those that do not want to get wet, and a beginner-level climbing rock. 

Taylor Street Park Sprayground is the perfect spot for family summer fun in Wake Forest. This 1.5acre park has a spray ground, along with a regular playground and picnic shelters. The sprayground features 16 jet streams, a tot mister, an Ombrello Twirl, buckets, and more features.

Buffaloe Road Aquatic Center– North Raleigh

Looking to escape the heat or need a rainy day activity? The Buffaloe Road Aquatic Center is an indoor waterpark that includes a 6,000 square foot pool, three-story water slide, a lazy river, three lap lanes, a tot play area, and a circular water vortex. There is a small admission fee for entry and the center is available to rent for birthday parties. 

The Lake Johnson Pool includes a sprayground for the kids, as well as a lap pool, recreational pool, and a large baby pool. The sprayground includes a wide variety of hoses, sprays of all sizes, huge buckets, and a lot of other fun features for keeping the kids cool and entertained. 

Located in the Millbrook Exchange Park, the pool is open year-round, which is supplemented by the sprayground and wading pool with fountains, giant water buckets, and more. There is a small admission fee for both residents and non-residents, and the park also offers a dog park and playgrounds. 

This 2,000 square foot splash pad is located in the middle of Knightdale Station Park and is a great way to beat the heat for anyone east of downtown Raleigh. There is also an additional 1,500 square foot deck with shade structures and benches. The splash pad is free to the public. 

While the heat in the Triangle is sweltering in the summer, there are plenty of places to cool off and have some water-based fun. Splash pads are a great option for the entire family, as it is safe and fun for children of all ages.