These are the 7 top parks in Houston

Houston residents have a lot to choose from when it comes green space. The city has 582 parks that span over 66,000 acres. Plans are underway to expand these parks within the next 10 years.

A selection of parks allow you to explore Houston from a new perspective. These are our top picks for Houston’s most beautiful parks.

Houston’s most popular attractions are located in Hermann Park (c) LUNAMARINA / Getty Images

Hermann Park

Children enjoy riding on the Hermann Park Railroad, or in the Buddy Caruth Playground For All Children. This playground is accessible for wheelchair users. You can also join the Marvin Taylor Trail runners or see a live performance at Miller Outdoor Theatre.

Memorial Park is located on an ex-WWII Training Camp (c) Fotosearch/Getty Images

Memorial Park

Memorial Park was established in honor of soldiers stationed at Camp Logan in WWI. It is now what it is thanks to Miss Ima Hugg, who protected the park from construction and oil wells.

This park is more wild than any other Houston parks. There are nearly 30 miles (48kms) of trails that can be used for running, hiking and walking among the trees or along small streams. There are many outdoor activities, such as croquet and tennis, but the Memorial Park Fitness Center is a popular choice for people who wish to exercise and lift weights. You can find delicious food from one of the many food trucks that are located near the Eastern Glades seven days per week, along with free yoga, history walks and historic tours.

Emancipation Park

Emancipation Park, Texas’ oldest park. The original owners were four former slaves. This park was made available only to African Americans in Houston until 1950. It has been an important social hub of Houston’s Black community.

The 10-acre site hosts the annual Juneteenth festivities and is a Unesco Site of Memory. It also forms part of the Slave Route Project, which highlights landmarks that are associated with slavery trade. This modern park includes a playground and an outdoor pool as well as various sporting fields. The Recreation Center also has a basketball court, a gymnasium, and many classes.

A sign above a restaurant at dusk reading
Betsy’s in Evelyn’s Park accepts takeout orders for a picnic at the park (c) Native Texan Kid / Sutterstock

Evelyn’s Park

Evelyn’s Park is only five acres in size, but the park packs quite a punch. It features everything, from Tai Chi classes and Zumba classes, to live music performances, and bingo.

The park offers a great place to relax. You can have your picnic on the Great Lawn. Take-out is available at Betsy’s Park. You can walk along the trails and see sculptures of Alice and Wonderland, such as the Native Meadow and Wildflower Hill. The Children’s Play Area has water and sand features. Parents may also show their children the Butterfly Wall which is a vibrant mosaic of butterflies and bugs.

Levy Park

There is something for everyone at Levy Park. At the center of the park is the Children’s Park. It features a climbing wall and tunnels as well as a slide that is seven feet wide and an outdoor water fountain to keep you cool on hot days. The Overlook is a boardwalk which runs through the oak canopy. It offers great views over the whole area from the dog parks and community gardens.

Are you not feeling energetic? You don’t feel like being active? There are many community offerings, including free Wi-Fi, carts with books and art supplies and game tables. Check the Houston Outdoor Hotspot calendar to see if there are any free classes or children’s storiestimes.

Buffalo Bayou Park offers a variety of leisure activities (c) iStockphoto / Getty Images

Buffalo Bayou Park

Buffalo Bayou Park is 3.7km long and follows Buffalo Bayou, near Downtown Houston. The 160-acre park offers trails and shaded areas to picnic. It is also a place for all leisure activities.

Water Works, which often hosts live performances, is one of the most popular spots within the park. Skaters from all skill levels can take to the Lee & Joe Jamail Skatepark, while kids explore the boulders and waterfalls of the Barbara Fish Daniel Nature Park Area. Nature lovers flock to the Barbara Fish Daniel Nature Play Area as the sun goes down, in order to view the Waugh Bridge Bat Colony that swarms from the Waugh Drive bridge.

A colorful mosaic sculpture of a skeleton in a tuxedo
Smither Park is home to Houston’s art-form creatives (c) Barbara babala/Shutterstock

Smither Park

Smither Park is a place where you can be inspired more than just nature. It was created by Dan Phillips, an innovative builder, and Stephanie Smither, an arts patron, in honor of John H. Smither, Stephanie Smither’s husband.

This half-acre site is home to public art created by Houston-based artists. Pieces include mosaic-covered sculptures and a memory wall measuring 400 feet made from recycled and found materials. You can view the Lindley Fish amphitheater, which looks almost like a fish’s stomach, or stroll through the Marilyn Oshman Meditation Garden. Or you could find your inner child at the Hinton & Mathre Swings. You can see artists creating masterpieces in the park on Saturday mornings at 10am.

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Publiated at Mon 26 July 2021 21.56:10 +0000

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