It is finally summer, and the kids are out of school! We want to help you (and your kids) avoid summer boredom by building excitement to spend time outdoors! Planning an activity with your family doesn’t have to be expensive or stressful if you decide to spend the day at one of the KWC Region’s parks. Whether on a hike, cycling, climbing, running, rollerblading, or simply surrounding yourself in nature, there is something for everyone to enjoy. We’ve put together a list of parks in the KWC Region to adventure in this summer, along with a variety of amenities you can take advantage of!
Continue reading to discover the Region’s most beautiful parks and get your dose of nature’s fresh air and green scenery.
Often called “the jewel of the city,” Waterloo Park is the heart of Waterloo. Spend a summer afternoon exploring 111 acres of surrounding green space. Bring a blanket and read, or share a picnic with the warm sun shining down on you. If that doesn’t excite you, the Park’s open green space also has two soccer/rugby pitches, two baseball diamonds, and a cricket pitch to run around and play a sports game with friends and family. The Park is also home to a skatepark, a splash pad, and picnic areas to take your kids and watch them learn new skills. There is free parking from the Westmount Road North entrance to the Park. Alternatively, you can use the bike-friendly lanes and feel safe with their bike traffic lights as you move on to explore Uptown Waterloo. For more information on cycling in the City of Waterloo, click here.
Fun fact: Waterloo Park has a zoo located in the centre of the Park! Visit the farm animals up close at Eby’s Farmstead – peacocks, donkeys, goats, and llamas – oh my!
Summer is the best time of the year to appreciate the outdoors! Lather your sunscreen, grab your summer shades, and visit Bechtel Park in Waterloo. Take a walk and explore the wildlife through twists and turns that lead down to a tranquil stream along a trail – where you’re sure to hear singsong of birds chirping. You cannot help but feel energized by all of the Park’s amenities: an indoor field house, the Manulife Soccer and Sports Centre, three outdoor soccer fields, four hard-surface tennis/pickleball courts, a hardball stadium with lights, a batting cage, and a playground! If you are interested in renting out any of these amenities listed for some awesome summer fun, click here.
Fun fact: Bechtel Park has one of the most ‘pawpular’ dog parks in Waterloo! Let your dog run freely in their fully fenced area.
RIM Park is the City of Waterloo’s leading recreation and park complex. Its main building is The Manulife Financial Sportsplex and Healthy Living Centre, which offers a wide variety of indoor activities. Plus, the Park is on 500 acres with an abundance of green spaces to take the family outdoors and escape into nature! RIM Park’s outdoor facilities include 12 outdoor multi-purpose sports fields, 6 ball diamonds, and sand beach volleyball courts to plan your dream summer day! If sports aren’t your thing, hang around the Parks’ playgrounds and have your kids climb the monkey bars or play tag until the sun goes down. Another great place to venture off to is the Walter Bean Trail which runs through the park, where you can hike, bike, or rollerblade along the Grand River. On the trail, you will have views of the beautiful Grey Silo Golf Course where you can schedule a tee time with your family! To learn more about RIM Park, click here.
Fun fact: RIM Park is just a 10-minute walk from our Trailside townhomes in Waterloo – allowing neighbours to take advantage of all the Park’s wonders inside and outside!
Sundew Park is located in the lovely Activa community of Vista Hills. Visit with your little ones and enjoy a beautiful summer day outdoors. Surround yourself with mature trees while exploring the Park’s playground and appreciate the wonders of a fresh summer breeze. You can see and smell beautiful flowers and plants of all shapes and colours from the pollinator gardens in Sundew Park. It is a unique garden that homeowners living in the Vista Hills community help to maintain with donations from the Grand River Conversation Authority, which granted over 100 native plants for the volunteers to plant. It is truly inspiring to see this community put their heart and soul into this garden together, as they care for it all season long! If you want to learn more about the community garden in Vista Hills, click here.
Fun fact: Sundew Park is walking distance to the GeoTime Trail – the largest woodland in Waterloo!
When visiting Victoria Park, you can’t miss some of the Park’s beautiful treasures and landmarks. As you walk through, you’ll spot numerous bridges and buildings still standing since it opened in 1896, making it Kitchener’s oldest Park. Bring your kids for the day and go back in time where you will find some of Kitchener’s original features that remain, including an iron bridge and its Park’s historic Pavilion. It will feel magical as you appreciate the Park’s tallest trees and most beautiful gardens. You can also take a walk, bike, or rollerblade along the Iron Horse Trail that runs through Victoria Park and enjoy nature’s serenity. If you’re looking for a way to stay cool this summer, take advantage of the Park’s free splash pad and then afterwards dry off on the Park’s large playground!
Fun Fact: Victoria Park is home to Otis and Ophelia, the swans that live in the Park during the summer!
Riverside Park Cambridge
You will not run out of things to do when visiting Riverside Park in Cambridge. Spanning 102 hectares, you can bring your kids to run around the many playground structures or cool off at a splash park. The boardwalk offers a beautiful scenic route to walk with your friends and family along the riverside. If you want to spend the day under a shaded tree with a picnic lunch, then you’re in luck.! The Park offers plenty of green space to lay down with a blanket, or you can rent a picnic table for free. If you are interested in renting a picnic table at Riverside Park, click here.
Fun fact: Riverside Park has a BMX Skateboard park for use throughout the entire summer!
We recommend taking the whole family with you when you plan your visit to Churchill Park in Cambridge this summer. Pack your swimsuits and play in the Park’s splash pad with water tubes and sprinkler jets that will cool you off! The Park’s field has a wide-open green space for you to bring a kite to fly around or a soccer ball to kick and watch your kid score their first goal. The amenities don’t stop there! Make sure to grab your baseball glove and bat and use their baseball diamond to see how far you can hit the ball. If your children love to skateboard, take them to the skatepark to show off gnarly tricks! This Park is truly the go-to destination for families in the area to spend a gorgeous summer day outdoors, especially those living in our hāvn community, as it is only a 10-minute drive from the Park’s wonderful features. To learn more about the Park’s hours, amenities, and features, click here.
Fun fact: Churchill Park features two playgrounds, including a safari-themed jungle gym and a massive Rocket ship where kids climb and play.
Get social with us
Are you planning to spend a day at a park this summer? Let us know! Send us a direct message or a photo of you at one of the KWC Region’s parks we recommended to @builtbyactiva on Instagram or Facebook for a chance to be featured on our social pages.
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