Nashville has tons of kid-friendly outdoor spaces. This city is not short on green spaces. But with so many playgrounds in Nashville to choose from, it can be hard to know which ones are worth packing the kids up and driving to.
There are many lovely parks in Nashville. The swoon-worthy Lake Radnor, on the south side of town. The extensive Shelby Park in East Nashville. The perfectly photogenic Bicentennial Park downtown. We can’t cover them all! So this short list consists of the parks and playgrounds in Nashville we tend to visit over and over again.
Our favorite Nashville Parks and Playgrounds
Fannie Mae Dees Park
Welcome to the iconic Fannie Mae Dees Park, known by locals as Dragon Park, home to a gorgeous mosaic sea serpent statue created by artist built by Pedro Silva and decorated by locals. It’s fun to climb on and is perfect for photo opportunities for out of town visitors or milestone photo shoots.
Bonus: The larger playground here is wheelchair accessible, fully shaded, and has a separate section for little kids (ages 2-5).
Two Rivers Park and Playground
Located in north Donelson, Two Rivers Park has one of our favorite playgrounds in Nashville. Two Rivers Park also features easy Greenway access, Wave Country, a disc golf course, a golf course, and two playgrounds!
We have spent more time using the newer playground with the rubber ground (instead of mulch) since it gave Skyler such a wide open space to practice walking as a toddler. The blue playground does not have much shade but it does have a lot of places for parents to sit.
Now that he’s a preschooler, he likes to alternate between the newer “blue” playground and the older “yellow” playground.
The yellow playground has some shade and a few benches for parents.
BlueCross Healthy Place at the Northwest YMCA
This massive all-abilities playground is free and open to the public. You do not need a YMCA membership to access it. Opened in January 2022, this has to be one of the best playgrounds in Nashville. It includes playground equipment for all ages, including ramp access, ground-level play, and a rubbery ground surface. There’s a splash pad, basketball and pickleball courts, a walking path, a whole section of adult fitness equipment, restrooms and shaded picnic canopies. The coolest feature, though, in my opinion is the challenge course! Slam the timer and race through American Ninja Warrior style.
Centennial Park is the best park in Nashville and offers much in the way of outdoor entertainment.
When it’s not hosting festivals and free events, the park is home to the life-size replica of the Parthenon, many shaded walking trails and gardens, the Suffragette statue, and a lovely central pond where you can entertain the little ones by feeding the ducks.
Our little Mooch loves chasing the pigeons, throwing stale bread at the fish, hiding in the plants, and people watching. There is a playground on the south side of the park that is so much fun. There’s a big kids play area and little kids playset, plus some swings (with one handicapped swing available). There’s lots of shade and plenty of squirrels to chase.
South Inglewood Community Center Playground
Another new, colorful playground with a rubbery ground surface. This one is especially suited for bigger kids, but my three-year-old loved it! Nestled on a hill in the Inglewood community of East Nashville, this is a well-lit playground with lots of visibility. Note that this playground is at the top of a hill, so windy days are excessively windy. Bring a jacket!
Planet Playground and Ava’s Splash Pad at Charlie Daniels Park
Outside of Nashville, in Wilson County, nestled in Charlie Daniels Park, this has got to be the biggest, most accessible, coolest playground I’ve ever seen and definitely our favorite of all the playgrounds in the Nashville area.
Planet Playground offers accessible features for kids of all-abilities and plenty of adult-sized features so parents can have fun too!
The splash pad is the perfect place to take the kids after school on a hot afternoon. Why aren’t there more of these throughout the city?! If you only have time to visit one playground during your Nashville trip, this should be the one. It’s worth the extra drive time out to Mt. Juliet.
Brentwood Splash Park
South of Nashville, in Williamson county, you’ve got to check out the Brentwood Splash Park. This is the only park on the list with an admission fee, but if your kiddo loves the water, it’s worth the cost for several hours of entertainment. You can bring in snacks and drinks, so make an afternoon of it! But note that this park is often crowded on hot summer days, so it’s a good idea to arrive early to secure a spot and to avoid waiting in a long line.
New as of 2020, the Brentwood Splash Park features four slides, two double loop, one single loop and one straight slide; ground and ring sprays; a rain curtain; a large dump bucket (which Skyler thought was SO fun!) and four elevated platforms with sprayers.. The Brentwood Splash Park has a shaded seating area where parents and guardians can watch their children play and relax. There are restrooms and changing rooms available on-site, as well as a concession stand that sells snacks and drinks.
Please tell me about your favorite parks and playgrounds in Nashville and around the world!