No pool? No problem! Tampa moms have plenty of inexpensive options for keeping their little ones cool this summer. When the temperature’s rising and you want to get the kids outside for some fun, consider one of these water parks. They’re safe and offer you a great way to play together without being in a pool or heading to the beach.
Dell Holmes Park, St. Petersburg
Previously known as Lakeview Park, Dell Holmes Park offers visitors a huge splash pad playground, large enough for up to 70 children to use at a time and open all week long. This is a great option for families with young children who can’t yet swim, and is also a great venue for parties and reunions that require covered eating areas. Families with older kids will find plenty to do, too, from hiking on a fitness trail to fishing on 380-acre freshwater Lake Maggiore. Dell Holmes Park is located at 2741 22nd Street South, at the north end of Lake Maggiore in St. Pete, and is open from sunrise to just after sunset.
Lowry Park Zoo, Tampa
If you want to get a little wild with your watery fun, head to Lowry Park Zoo for a day and bring your swimsuit: with paid admission, your children can pass the time splashing around at the Wallaroo Station, an Australian Billabong-themed area. Make sure your kids are properly attired for splashing, too – appropriate footwear is also required. There’s plenty of seating for parents in the area, too, and a smaller splash area near the park entrance where families can relax and cool off near the Manatee Fountains.
To reach Lowry Park Zoo, take I-275 South to Exit 48/Sligh Avenue. Both the splash areas and the zoo close during poor weather conditions, so keep this in mind when planning your escape. If it’s your birthday, admission is free; otherwise, tickets are $18.95 for kids ages 3-11 (kids under 2 are admitted for free). Admission for adults is $23.95, and parking is always free.
WaterPlay at Zephyr Park, Zephyrhills
If you’re just north of Tampa, a fantastic free option for the entire family is WaterPlay at Zephyr Park . Known as “The City of Pure Water”, Zephyrhills boasts a splash pad of its own. Surrounded by oak trees and plenty of benches, the playground features water cannons, splash buckets and leaping water jets for supervised playtime with the kids. Bring your camera – you’ll want to take pictures of your kids keeping cool in the Florida heat.
Take I-75 to SR 54 headed east, and continue for approximately 9.5 miles until you reach 4th Street. Zephyr Park is located at the intersection of 4th Street and 4th Avenue in Zephyrhills.
You don’t have to spend a lot of money or hit the beach if you want to cool down – just head to one of Tampa Bay’s water play parks and enjoy some time together!