Houston Parks – Even though the drought has destroyed some of the most beautiful parts of Houston, there are still plenty of parks and green spots you can visit. Here you will find a list of the best ones you can visit with your family, but don’t worry – we will have another list of small and dog parks as well.
As far as the criteria go, we compiled our list by looking at the park’s ease of use, its public art, accessibility and the general vibe of it. However, in some cases, the sentiment also played a vital role. Who knows? Maybe one of your favorites is on this list as well.
10. Baldwin Park
Located in the downtown/midtown area, Baldwin Park is a family hub during the weekends. Over the years, the upkeep has drastically changed for the better. Thus, it now attracts more visitors during the year. You can go to the events that take place in this park, and take a look at some of its trees – it contains the area’s oldest ones. And, it’s not too far away, so you can quickly get to it.
Address: 1702 Elgin.
Phone Number: 832-395-7000.
9. Mason Park
When it comes to Mason Park, two traits attract the visitors, especially during spring and summer. The first one is Braes Bayou, which intersects the park and makes it seem as if it’s smaller than the original 100 acres.
The waterside is also the perfect place for a picnic or a sneaky PDA session. The second most attractive spot in the park is the Spanish style clubhouse. Mason Park also has a swimming pool and a few tennis courts. If you ever feel like playing basketball, there are courts for that too, and there are a few soccer fields and a baseball field as well.
Address: 541 South 75th Street.
Phone Number: 713-928-7055.
8. Spotts Park
Even though it is one of the smallest parks on this list, Spotts Park still has a lot to offer. Namely, it has a bowl-shaped hill which has attracted visitors for quite some time now. Kids love going up and down the hill, and it is also an exercise spot for many fitness enthusiasts. The park is situated on just 16 acres, and it doesn’t have a waterfront.
Nevertheless, there is a basketball court, a playground area, tennis courts and a few crepe myrtle tree clusters. Remember to visit the park in the spring – one of these clusters will be painted blue for a public art project. But, don’t worry – the paint is temporary and completely safe!
Address: 401 South Heights.
7. Sam Houston Park
Sam Houston Park is the oldest park in the city, and its favorable location is what attracts most visitors. When you walk into it, all the city noise disappears, and it sort of feels like you’re in the past. There are no skyscrapers – just historic buildings and a beautiful green lawn.
The park opened in 1899, and since then, it has become a local hub for families who want to enjoy the many festivals and events it offers. Moreover, it is also home to the Heritage Society museum, and you can even visit some of the restored homes of the earliest residents of Houston (for example, the Jack Yates house and the 1823 cabin).
Address: 1100 Bagby.
Phone Number: 713-655-1912.
See also: Houston Zoo
6. Allen’s Landing
Allen’s Landing has only two acres, but its historical importance is what made us include it in this list. When John and August Allen came in 1836, this park is where they first landed. Furthermore, the park is also where the first port and commercial hub were established.
Address: 1001 Commerce Street.
5. Sesquicentennial Park
If you want to take part in boat and canoe races, then there isn’t a better place to visit than the Sesquicentennial Park. Its waterfronts are the main attractions. The part that’s behind the Wortham Center is always neat and well-kept.
Meanwhile, the part that goes across the bayou from the center is generally natural and wild. The park is in the downtown theater district, and if boat races aren’t your thing, it also has a few festivals during the year.
Address: 400 Texas Avenue.
Phone Number: 713-250-3666.
4. Buffalo Bayou
If we had to give an award for the Most Improved Park, then Buffalo Bayou would probably get it. This park is the site of the largest bat colony in Houston, and it has also reaped many benefits from the Buffalo Bayou Partnership.
Over the years (20, to be exact), it has improved substantially. Now, there is a restored waterfront, a skate park, and even pedestrian bridges. The park also has public art and a few convenient trails.
Address: 1800-3600 Allen Parkway/Memorial Drive.
Phone Number: 832-395-7000.
3. Discovery Green
If you live in the downtown area, you won’t have any trouble at all getting to the Discovery Green park. It is one of the newest additions to our list, and we decided to include it because it offers two incredible advantages. The first one is the location – the park sits between a few shops and hotels and the well-known George R. Brown Convention Center.
The second advantage is the multitude of events. This park has more than 300 events each year. Those include an ice rink, festivals, public film screenings and several concerts. It is a popular relaxation hub both for locals and the many tourists that visit Houston every year.
Address: 1500 McKinney.
Phone Number: 713-400-7336.
2. Memorial Park
There are two well-known Houstonian teams. The first one hails Memorial Park as the best one there is, and the second one prefers Hermann Park. Home to the Bayou City Arts Festival, Memorial Park is a favorite for everyone who wants to stay active.
The park has many playing fields and trails, which are perfect for exercise enthusiasts. Moreover, some people also love to visit it and take part in costumed knights role play.
Address: 6501 Memorial Drive.
Phone Number: 713-863-8403.
1. Hermann Park
We had to place Hermann Park on the No.1 spot on our list because it has a variety of attractions available. There’s basically something for everyone. If you love ducks, you can visit the Japanese Garden. But, be careful – they can be a bit territorial. Then, there’s the Miller Theatre and the famous hill, loved by many rolling down enthusiasts.
What’s great about this park is the fact that you can use the METRO train to get there. It stops at the Japanese Garden, which means that you can easily get off and avoid having to search for a great parking spot.
There are other attractions as well; for example, the reflection pond, the Houston Zoo, and the Houston Museum of Natural Science. All these locations are within walking distance.
Furthermore, if you are a fan of Shakespeare, you can visit the annual festival at the Miller Theatre. Also, Houston Grand Opera holds free performances in the theatre as well, and you can even see the Houston Symphony and the Houston Ballet perform. Dance and music festivals are a must, so make sure to visit them – there are many of them during the year.
Address: 6201 Hermann Park Drive.
Phone Number: 713-524-5876.
See also: 6 Best Amusement Parks in Texas