Orange County Splash Parks and Water Play (including Free Fountains, Splash Pads, Waterslides, and Hotels with Water Features)
Always check official sources for Summer 2022 to see if the splash park you want to visit is open. Reservations may be required!
One of Fun Orange County Parks’ regular readers asked about local “spray parks” for water play – and even gave some suggestions herself.
I keep hearing that Southern California, especially OC, lacks splash pads. My only explanation is our proximity to the beach and the good weather which allows us to make our own splash parks at home with sprinklers.
This year – you don’t have to wonder: “Are Orange County splash pads open?” I’m so happy to report on the splash pads and water play areas for Summer 2022. I predict they will definitely be more crowded since we have gone so many summers with limited or closed splash pads.
Here are links to a few splash pad options if you are looking to get wet this summer:
FREE SPLASH FOUNTAINS
Look for these splash pads and spray parks to open for summer around Memorial Day. I will make note if they are open more year-round.
More FREE splash pads not featured on this blog:
- Rancho Santa Margarita Splash Pad at Central Park opened to the public in April. I have a post on the playground that is attached to it at RSM Central Park.
- The Splash Pad in Westminster’s Sigler Park will be open WEEKENDS (May 28th-June 12th, September 12th-25th) and DAILY (June 18th – Sept 5th) for Summer 2022 between the hours of 12pm-5pm and closing 2-2:30pm for maintenance. The splash pad is at the corner of a large rectangular park area right off the main boulevard.
- Fullerton actually has an info page about their spray pools. The first 3 listed (Lemon, Adlena, Valencia) are open daily starting June 4th – August 28th from noon to 5 p.m.
- Lemon Park Spray Pool at Maple Neighborhood Center in Fullerton used to be a sparse playground with old equipment, although the water play area hasn’t changed much the surrounding playground has new equipment. It’s near the Fullerton AMC and Costco. Open during summer.
- Adlena Park
- Valencia Park
- Downtown Plaza – this one is open daily from 10 a.m. to sunset through from April 7th – August 28th.
- Brio Park and Oeste Park in La Habra are two splash pads in La Habra. These ones open May 28th and they are open particularly late — 10am until 7pm! Staff is on site only on Sat/Sun. Staff is on site only on Sat/Sun. The website talks about the splash pad themes: “The Brio splash pad features a train-themed play area due to its proximity to the historic train depot, and the Oeste splash pad features a rocket ship-themed play area in keeping with the old “space” theme at the park.”
- Atlantis Play Center in Garden Grove – Splash pad usually open during summer except for the weeks when they are running summer camp inside the park. [Atlantis Splash Pad is CLOSED for the remainder of Summer 2022. It opened June 7th and then there was a temporary closure announced on June 23rd. That extended all the way into July when on July 22, 2022 the city announced that the splash pad would not be opening until June 2023 – next summer.]
- For Anaheim, there’s Ponderosa Park (OC Register story from June 2018) AND Mira Loma Park & Splash Pad. Both opened Friday, May 27th and the hours are 10am-7pm.
- The District in Tustin Legacy shopping area has pop-up fountains, but it has been closed for more than a year for repairs.
- Frontier Park in Tustin spray ground “features a state of the art recirculation system and special water conserving spray nozzles that ensures no wasteful water consumption.” Always seems to be undergoing repairs, but I call every summer to see if it is open.
- Brenner Park wading pool in Buena Park – no word on if it will open for 2022.
Always check the city or original source to make sure the parks are open. Sometimes they turn off the water without notice.
PAY FOR WATER PLAY
I’ve never been, but the City of La Mirada Buccaneer Bay (Splash!) will open for Summer 2022 beginning Memorial Day and it gets the best reader comments:
“We visited Splash in La Mirada on Saturday and “OH MY GOODNESS” it was sooo much fun!” (-Lisa)
“We visited La Mirada (all the way from Lake Forest) today – there’s nowhere we won’t drive! It was definitely worth it. The ‘common pool’ area in the middle is free, parking is free, my 2 year old son was free. That’s a bargain in exchange for the cost of gas. I like that locker rental only cost 50 cents and that you can swim for free or enter Buccaneer Bay for a fee. I thought that cost of the Bay was reasonable for all they had to offer. Can’t wait to go again sometime.” (-Heather)
Season passes are $65/$80 and day tickets are $20/$25.
Newport Dunes Inflatable Water Playground & Water Sport Rentals – Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day (charged hourly). See the Newport Dunes rate sheet to get an idea on rates/hours.
The Adventure Lagoon Anaheim Water Park just came on the scene in Summer 2021. It is open for Summer 2022.
Other Southern California Water Theme Parks:
- Wild Rivers Waterpark inside Irvine Great Park is open for Summer 2022. Season passes are sold out already for this summer but there will are day tickets available. Your best bet is to sign up for their emails so you can be the first to know when tickets go on sale.
- Knott’s Berry Farm Soak City, Buena Park – Opened for the season on May 21, 2022.
- Sea World’s Sesame Place in Chula Vista (San Diego area) – formerly Sea World’s Aquatica. Opened March 26th.
- Legoland Water Park in Carlsbad and they even have a splash pad area in the Lego Movie World section of the park (San Diego area)
- San Diego Zoo Wildlife Explorers Basecamp – also a splash pad by the gondolas. Looks so fun! Just opened Spring 2022.
- The Wave Water Park, Vista – opens Memorial Day weekend and they have a printable calendar for the season. (San Diego area)
- Hurricane Harbor, Valencia (LA area)
- Raging Waters, San Dimas (LA area)
SMALLER SCALE WATER PLAY FOR LOCALS
- Aliso Viejo Aquatic Center and Pool
- San Clemente Aquatics and Vista Hermosa Sports Park (pictured with green slide above)
- Go to different cities for recreational swim (click here for my Ultimate Guide to City Recreation Programs and Calendars)
- Join the YMCA to take part in swim lessons or rec swim
- Montanoso Recreation Center in Mission Viejo (splash pad) and Sierra Recreation Center (waterslide) have day use fees or recreation memberships for residents and non-residents
Southern California Hotels with Water Play
It’s useful to remember that this list is ONLY waterslides or water parks AT hotels — meaning (in most cases) you must be a registered guest and staying at the hotel to enjoy the amenities.
ResortPass is one way to gain access to some hotels by paying for the day without having to pay for an overnight stay. See if the hotel you have in mind is listed!
- Slyder’s Water Playground at Hyatt Huntington Beach (OC)
- Waterfront Beach Resort Hilton in Huntington Beach (OC)
- Splash Landing Pools and Family Sandy Beach at La Costa Resort (North San Diego County)
- Waterslides at Hyatt Mission Bay Spa & Marina (San Diego)
- Family Pool at the Grand Pacific Palisades in Carlsbad (North San Diego County)
- Splashtopia at Rancho Las Palmas Resort (Palm Springs)
- Children’s Pool at Hyatt Regency Indian Wells Resort & Spa (Palm Springs Area)
- Chuckwalla Slide and Family Pool at Marriott’s Shadow Ridge I – The Villages (Palm Springs Area)
- Mirage Pool at The Westin Desert Willow Villas (Palm Springs Area)
- Monorail Pool at the Disneyland Hotel (OC)
- Redwood Pool at Disney’s Grand Californian Resort (OC)
- Rooftop pool at Disneyland Paradise Pier Hotel (OC)
- Surfside Waterpark at Courtyard Anaheim Theme Park Entrance (OC)
- Castaway Cove at Howard Johnson by Wyndham Hotel Anaheim (OC)
- Waterpark at Cambria Hotel & Suites in Anaheim (OC)
- Splash Zone water playground at Holiday Inn & Suites Anaheim (OC)
- Kids Splash & Play at Renaissance Club Sport Hotel in Aliso Viejo (OC)
- Children’s Splash Zone at Laguna Cliffs Marriott (OC)
- Pool with kids activity area at Knott’s Berry Farm Hotel (OC)
- Great Wolf Lodge, Garden Grove indoor water park (OC)
- Resort Pool and Splash Zone at Terranea Resort (LA area)
What did I miss? Please help me keep this list up-to-date. I’ve been maintaining it every summer SINCE 2008!
Don’t forget the BEACH! Kids can splash in the surf without going all the way in the water. Hold their hands and cool your toes, too. I have a ton of suggestions with details under my Beach category. And I wrote about the Best Toddler Beaches with no waves.
Originally published in Summer 2008.