Twin Cities Parks & Playgrounds Search

Please check ahead before heading to Twin Cities Parks in 2020. Many amenities are temporarily closed to support social distancing.

Discover a new outdoor play space! The Family Fun Twin Cities Parks & Playgrounds Search directory is your one stop for the best Twin Cities Park Guide. We share some of the best playgrounds in the Twin Cities in this directory. We are so passionate about how awesome our parks are that we don’t want you to stop with 10 parks or even 150 parks! There are so many parks in the metro area, you could visit a new one every day for some free Twin Cities family fun and still not have seen them all in 5 years.

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Pearl Park, Minneapolis

Little Free Library
414 East Diamond Lake Road, Minneapolis, MN 55419, United States
Admission: $0.00
Hours of Operation:
Mon. 03:00 PM - 09:00 PM
Tue. 03:00 PM - 09:00 PM
Wed. 03:00 PM - 09:00 PM
Thu. 03:00 PM - 09:00 PM
Fri. 03:00 PM - 09:00 PM
Sat. 09:00 AM - 04:00 PM
Sun. Closed
Currently Showing Building Hours August 27 2018-June 11 2019: Park Hours: 6 am-midnight

Pearl Park is mainly a sports park with several courts and fields. Other family-friendly amenities include a playground and tot lot, wading pool, walking path and a free bike pump. There is also space for picnics with restroom facilities and a drinking fountain. A paved path winds throughout the park, circling the baseball diamonds. It is not in good enough condition for smooth skateboarding or skating, but would be good for stroller walks or bike riding. Keep in mind that the breeze off of Diamond Lake makes this park a bit cooler than other places around town. It's a good idea to toss a sweater or other layers into your car when visiting.

Pearl Park's Playgrounds

The two playgrounds are close together and benches are conveniently set up so you can watch both playgrounds at once. One thing to be aware of is that the playground area sits on the intersection of two busy roads -- Diamond Lake Road and Portland Avenue -- and across the street from Diamond Lake, so it may not be the best park if you have a fast runner. There is enough of a grassy buffer that you can probably tackle an average toddler before they got anywhere dangerous. 

  • Big Kid Playground
  • Tot Lot
  • I don't know what this alligator is for, but its cute.
  • Sand Play Table in the Tot Lot
  • Playhouse in the Tot Lot

Pearl Park Wading Pool

This park is not on a school site, so the pool is open from Memorial Day Weekend through Labor Day. Built in the late 1960s, it is one of the older pools in the park system, however, it was updated to meet safety standards. Minneapolis wading pools are unguarded and open from 10 am – 9 pm during the season, unless temperatures are still over 85 degrees at 6 pm, then they remain open until 10 pm. Pools do not open if the temperature is under 65 degrees.

Pearl Park Recreation Center

The recreation center features a gym, a community kitchen, a craft room, and meeting and multi-purpose rooms. It is not air-conditioned.

Plane Watching at Pearl Park

This park is on an active flight pattern, so it is a great place to go to watch planes. You'll see several descending planes during the course of an average visit.

Birthday Parties at Recreation Center

Birthday Parties at Recreation Center

Rooms can be rented for private events like birthday parties. Contact MPRB for information on permit requirements and special use fees.

Winter at Pearl Park

This park has both ice skating and hockey rinks. Rinks are usually open from late December to mid-February, depending on weather.

While this is not one of Minneapolis Park's sanctioned sledding parks, it does have gentle slopes that go into the park (as opposed to toward traffic). These could be good starter hills for small kids. MPRB recognizes sledding happens at non-designated parks and reminds users that it is “at your own risk” and and to use caution.

The Horseshoe Pit 

The park has a fenced off horseshoe pit area that my 9-year-old suggested would make a great snowball fight area. However, my husband pointed out that kids would need to be aware of where the stakes are so they don't impale themselves. I'm definitely not endorsing this plan, but I do see the appeal. However, it did occur to me that it might be fun to bring a set of diving rings and play ring toss in the pits and then use the rings in the pool afterwards.

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We can help you find some of the best playgrounds Minneapolis, St. Paul and greater Minnesota. Looking for specifics like a playground, swimming spot or bike trail? Want to find the perfect place to a pitch a tent or your city's best sledding hill? Search by all of these amenities and more in our Twin Cities Parks & Playgrounds Search by selecting a category from the drop down menu or typing in the keyword of your choice in the search box. You can even enter an address and select a radius to search by city or region of the Metro. Plus, find park hours, fees, directions, pictures and other extras.

We've currently reviewed over 400 parks in this directory, but we would love to hear from you! What do YOU think are the best parks in the Twin Cities? How about the best parks in Minnesota? What parks did we completely miss? What is your favorite little unknown gem? We really want to share all your favorite indoor playgrounds and outdoor parks! Let us know and we'll add a review here.

Twin Cities parks are great for hiking, biking, rollerblading, kayaking, canoeing and other fun physical games. But, they are also just great for hanging out in a hammock and picnicking while the kids explore and enjoy some of the best playgrounds in Minnesota. Want to get even greener? We have a big list of the best nature playgrounds for kids and families in Minneapolis and beyond.

Quick List of the Best Twin Cities Parks by City

Want to explore what we consider to be the very best parks in each community of the Twin Cities Metro Area? Consult our quick list below:

Bloomington Parks

Burnsville Parks

Chanhassen Area Parks

Eagan Parks

Inver Grove Heights & South St Paul Parks

Maple Grove Parks

Minneapolis Parks Nearby Nature Activities

Roseville Parks

Woodbury Parks

Inside Parks and Indoor Waterparks

In Minnesota indoor playgrounds are a necessity! I know we think of outdoors when we think of parks, but with our long, dark and cold winters, some indoor active games are a must. You can even have indoor picnics at these parks. This such a great way to stretch the summer feeling into the winter! Check out some of the best indoor playgrounds in the Twin Cities this winter.

Outside Parks and Outdoor Waterparks

Minnesota has these, too! And during our short summer, we want to take advantage of them as much as possible! best In fact, the Minneapolis and St. Paul Parks are some of the best outdoor playgrounds twin cities - actually in the country. They win awards - every year! Look and See. Every. Single. Year. So get out to our area parks, make up some fun games to play.


Some of the best beaches in the Twin Cities are hidden little gems. Anne has her favorite 20 Twin Cities Beaches, Parks & Playgrounds to Try This Summer. She revises the list every year to keep us in the know.

Shakespeare in the Park at Twin Cities Parks

One of my favorite ways to enjoy our parks is with a play or musical in a park. It doesn't really have to be Shakespeare, it can be the latest Disney princess musical or even a puppet wagon. In fact, sometimes Open Eye Figure Theatre's driveway tour has some park stops. Watch our Performing Arts page each summer to find these fun, free park events.

Music in the Parks - Minneapolis, St. Paul & Suburbs

Nothing says easy summertime fun like music in the parks! The best thing is, there is seriously a concert every night of the week from Memorial Day until Labor Day. Obviously, some get cancelled due to weather, but pick any nice night, take a look at the Family Fun Twin Cities calendar and you can find music in a park. No sign up, no tickets, no money, no commitment. Show up, bring a picnic, play at some of the best playgrounds in Minnesota and relax to great music.

Movies in the Parks at Twin Cities Parks

One thing I love about Movies in the Park is that they tend to screen at some of the best playgrounds in Minneapolis and the greater Twin Cities. I love to make it a full evening with a picnic and some fun outdoor kid games and Park Games for Kids. This is a good time to see newer kids movies that you didn't catch in the theater or to introduce your kids to your own childhood favorites without having to gamble on library DVD quality.

Tot Times

Active indoor games for preschoolers are something we are always on the search for when the weather is uncooperative. The parks have a lot to offer with their tot times and open gym slots. For instance, they often offer riding toys, hula hoops, games to play with preschoolers, balls of all kinds, climbing structures, fun games for toddlers, etc.

Looking for the Best Playgrounds and Parks Beyond the Twin Cities?

If you are traveling outside the metro, you'll want to check out some of our favorite day-trip parks. If you are going further than that, we have a list of great family-owned websites to direct you to the best parks around the country so you don't have to depend on national websites or random internet searches.

For more outdoor play ideas:

Twin Cities Parks & Playgrounds - Mini Golf Courses Twin Cities Parks & Playgrounds - Beaches

Check out our Parks and Playgrounds Pinterest Board.

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