Not quite as shady as many of my other favorite Austin summer spots, Bailey Park and splash pad is nestled in a two acre park just off North Lamar. And the splash pad here really splashes!
The most obvious feature of this splash pad is a huge orange pipe-like fountain that pours water out with quite some speed. My toddler cannot hold a cup under the force of the water (even though he tries repeatedly) and my five year old loves to just get completely soaked in the powerful stream of water. There is a large fountain in the middle that sprays three separate directions, reaching almost all parts of the concrete area. And the ever-popular yellow car-wash like water feature is a good gentle alternative to get everyone of all ages nice and wet. My toddler, who mostly prefers the small sprinklers, likes the three little ones that reach just above the ground.
The far side of the splash pad has a pretty good size area that stays dry and shaded. Parents can set their things on the wall that marks off the water area and watch from there without getting soaked. There is only one tree to provide shade, however, so those spots get taken quickly if it’s crowded, which isn’t too often. And the kids playing in the splash pad will be in the sun no matter what water feature they like best. There is a nice shaded area with picnic table under the overhand of the large stone structure that also houses the bathrooms. This is a great spot for playgroups to meet or birthday parties to set up.
The park offers many other fun activities as well. The newly fenced off sand volleyball court gets a good amount of use. The newly resurfaced tennis courts are among the nicest I’ve seen in any public park and the few swings for both toddlers and older kids are in a pretty shaded section of the large grassy area.
Less crowded than many other splash pads with many options for water play, Bailey Park and splash pad is a great Austin spot for summer fun.
Daily 9 a.m. – 8 p.m.
1101 W 33rd St
A full-time High School English teacher, Sarah spends her summers exploring with her two children, hoping to discover the many shaded spots that Austin has to offer. She writes about her adventures in motherhood on her blog, Toddler Summer.