Comprehensive List: Orlando's Best FREE Splash Pads
Orlando is such a fun city to live in or to visit. There's just so much to do here! Sometimes, you're looking for something fun to do on a warm Florida afternoon and you don't want to spend a bunch of money because you're saving up for a visit to Disney, right?
As a resident, one of the biggest challenges in Orlando is finding something to do that doesn't cost an arm or a leg.
Yeah, sure we go to the theme parks, but that costs money!
Going to the movies? That costs money, too.
I love free entertainment options and one of the best choices for our warm Orlando weather is a visit to a splash pad. There are some great, free splash pads in the Orlando area and we put together a comprehensive list of the best ones in town.
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Barnett Park Splash Pad - West Orlando
4801 W Colonial Dr
Orlando, FL 32808
Barnett Park Hours of Operation
- Daily 9 a.m. - 7 p.m. (March – October)
- Daily 10 a.m. - 5 p.m. (November – February)
Barnett Park is a fairly large, public park found just west of downtown Orlando. In addition to the splash pad, the park offers trails, disc golf, playgrounds, fitness classes, plus basketball & volleyball courts.
The splash pad portion of Barnett Park opened on April 7th, 2011 and provides a great way to escape the heat of central Florida without breaking the bank.
Celebration Splash Pad - Near Disney World
The splash pad in downtown Celebration is located right where Front Street turns toward the main portion of downtown just outside the old Celebration theater.
The splash pad area isn't very large, but it's one of my favorite free splash pads in Orlando. Due to its size, only a few children can enjoy it at once. The upside is that, due to its small size, it's also not typically very busy so there's a good chance you'll be able to enjoy the free cool-down it offers.
Relax for a bit and then head across the street to Kilwins for some awesome ice cream!
Capehart Park Splash Pad - East Orlando
715 Capehart Dr
Orlando, FL 32825
Capehart Park Splash Pad Hours of Operation
- Summer: 8 a.m.- 8 p.m.
- Winter: 8 a.m.- 6 p.m.; Monday - Sunday
- Recreation Center remains open 8 a.m.- 8 p.m. year round
Capehart Park is really a great space located in east Orlando just south of the 408 expressway. Like many public parks in Orlando, there are lots of things to do in addition to the splash pad including a tot lot playground, and a fitness path, among other amenities.
Oh, and swim diapers are required for children that aren't yet potty trained and can be purchased for $2 at the park.
Shady Park (Hannibal Square) Spray Ground
Shady Park Spray Ground Hours of Operation (April - October)
- Sunday: 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. (due to churches in the immediate area)
- Monday - Saturday: 8 a.m to 8 p.m.
Note: According to the City of Winter Park website, the Shady Park Spray Ground is temporarily closed for repairs. The park is set to re-open in the summer of 2017.
Winter Park is such a great area of Central Florida. Their parks are well-known as some of the best available in metro Orlando.
Shady Park and the Spray Ground splash pad is a great place to just sit and relax and let the kids run around and wear themselves out. There are a few benches around the park, but usually not quite enough. I definitely recommend bringing a chair to sit in just in case.
Kissimmee Lakefront Park Splash Pad
Kissimmee Lakefront Park
201 Lakeview Dr
Kissimmee, FL 34741
Kissimmee Lakefront Park Splash Pad Hours of Operation
- There are no official hours of operation for the splash pad in Kissimmee Lakefront Park.
I think both the Kissimmee and St. Cloud areas are somewhat overlooked by Orlando residents when it comes to thinking of places to go for family entertainment.
Kissimmee Lakefront Park really is the ideal setting for a fun family day. It's a grassy waterfront park with walking paths, a fishing pier, picnic pavilions & a shaded playground.
The whole area is just a great place to relax, with a decent amount of parking and wide-open green spaces. Given the close proximity to the lake, it's best to keep a close eye on small children, though.
St. Cloud Lakefront Splash Pad
1104 Lakeshore Blvd
St Cloud, FL 34769
St. Cloud Lakefront Park Splash Pad Hours of Operation
- The park hours are sunrise to sunset according to the official Osceola County Website.
I really love the town of St. Cloud. It's just east of it's "sister" city of Kissimmee and due south of the growing Lake Nona area. It's relatively close to Orlando but still has much of that small-town Florida charm.
The St. Cloud Lakefront park is an awesome place to visit and has so much to offer. Amenities at the park include:
- 143 boat-slip marina
- Banquet hall
- Bike path
- Boat ramp
- Family picnic pavilions
- Fishing pier
- Park benches
- Performing arts pavilion
- Picnic tables
- Playground equipment
- Sand beach
- Splash pad
- Volleyball court
The St. Cloud Lakefront park is easily in my top 3 favorite parks in the metro Orlando area, with lots of space, tons of amenities and an overall very well-kept park for families to enjoy.
Universal CityWalk Splash Pad
6000 Universal Blvd
Orlando, FL 32819
Universal CityWalk Splash Pad Hours of Operation
- Universal CityWalk operating hours are from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 a.m., 365 days a year.
Okay, so unfair advantage - a theme park in Orlando has a free splash pad. However, if you arrive before 6:00 p.m. there is a fee to park in the garages at CityWalk, the splash pad is free for anyone to use inside.
While I've never gone to CityWalk just to play in the splash pad, it is a great way to cool off for the kids after a day at Universal Studios or Islands of Adventure. There's a lot of space for this splash pad, but keep in mind the pad at CityWalk isn't soft like some of the others in this list.
Winter Garden Downtown Splash Pad & Pavilion
Downtown Winter Garden is another "hidden gem" of Orlando - although, it's becoming less hidden as it grows in popularity.
Winter Garden is a former citrus town, as many were once upon a time in Florida. The town is just a 20 minute drive from downtown Orlando and has a really great walking experience not found in many areas in Central Florida.
The splash pad is located on the grounds of the city water works right in the heart of the downtown district. The splash pad here is much more open and not really a park, but it's still a great place to cool off, especially if you spend an afternoon walking around the various shops and restaurants in the area.