Best West Des Moines Parks

West Des Moines, Iowa has so many fantastic parks and playgrounds for kids of all ages to enjoy and explore.

If you are looking for some great parks to visit, I have listed 11 of the best West Des Moines parks. 

Check them out below!


Raccoon River Park

Raccoon River Park is the largest park in West Des Moines and has the most variety of things to do. 

It includes the picturesque Blue Heron Lake which is perfect for fishing, swimming, and no wake boating. 

Additionally, there is a 3.2 mile mixed crushed rock and paved trail that goes around Blue Heron Lake as well as next to the Raccoon River. This trail is very wooded and offers quite a bit of shade in the warm weather months. 

Besides that, Raccoon River Park has a boathouse that offers boat rentals to visitors including canoes, kayaks, stand-up paddle boards, and paddle boats. 

There is also a fishing pier, a Nature Lodge for events and rentals, a dog park, sports complexes, ice rink, picnic shelters, and an archery facility. 

Additionally, you can’t forget the beach and playground. 

Raccoon River Park’s brand new state-of-the art playground with newly enhanced play areas as well as rubber and turf ground surface, is truly remarkable!

The playground offers unique areas tailored to accommodate children of varying ages and abilities, ensuring a fun and safe experience for everyone!

Raccoon River Park has a shelter with restrooms and changing rooms as well as a couple of portable toilets. 

This is a fantastic park for so many activities as well as simply enjoying the natural scenery around it. If you pack a picnic lunch, you could easily spend a good half of a day or more at Raccoon River Park. 

Expert Tip

Be prepared to enjoy a variety of activities at Raccoon River Park. I highly suggest having beach gear ready as well as bring your bikes for a bike ride. You will also want to bring a lunch or snack if you are planning on spending a half of a day or more here!

Location: 2500 Grand Avenue, West Des Moines

Peony Park

Peony Park is one of the newly updated parks in West Des Moines. It is nestled in a neighborhood and the perfect place to spend a morning, afternoon, or evening. 

This park has a new rubber ground as well as playground equipment. 

There is a cute small play structure for younger kids as well as one for the older kids that has some fun climbing obstacles. 

Peony Park also has a variety of swings for visitors to enjoy.

Besides the playground equipment, there is a basketball court, tennis courts, and large field with a backstop.

The park also has a trail going around it that is perfect for bike riding and walking. 

Additionally, Peony Park has a shelter and a normal restroom.

Location: 1100 63rd Street, West Des Moines

Knolls Park

Knolls Park is one of our family’s favorite parks in the West Des Moines area.

My kids LOVE the play structure that is for the older kids. It is quite tall as it has two levels with a couple of super fun slides. 

There is also a playground for the younger kids as well as some climbing obstacles and swings. It also has a small sandbox.

This park lies along a bike trail which is really nice and has some nice trees surrounding it. 

It does not have a shelter but does have a few picnic tables under some trees.

Parking for Knolls Park is along the street. 

It is important to note that this park only has a portable toilet. 

Location: 5150 Aspen Drive, West Des Moines

Quail Cove Park

Quail Cove is another one of our favorite parks in West Des Moines. 

We love this park because of its scenic views and also its large climbing web and boulder.

This park has a great little trail with a bridge that leads to a larger field.

Quail Cove Park is a wonderful place to have lunch as it has some nice tables with stunning sky views.

The park has a play structure for older kids as well as one that is designed for younger kids.

My kids love the play structure for older kids as it has a fun humongous boulder to climb on as well as a climbing web. 

Quail Cove Park also has a basketball court. 

It also has a restroom available. 

Expert Recommendation

Quail Cove Park is one of my favorite parks to have lunch or a snack. I highly suggest enjoying the picturesque views from the picnic tables.

Location: 1515 S 52nd Street, West Des Moines

Willow Springs Park

Willow Springs Park has also been recently updated. It now, too, has a rubber ground. 

The unique thing about the new Willow Springs playground is that it has a hot air balloon theme. 

It is super cute and definitely encourages some imaginative play!

Willow Springs Park has a play structure for both the older kids that involves more climbing and a large slide as well as a smaller one for the younger kids to do some pretending. 

There are also some swings.

This park also has a walking and biking trail around it as well as basketball and tennis courts. There is also a large field with a backstop. 

Finally, Willow Springs Park also has a park shelter and restrooms.

Location: 5685 Wistful Vista Drive, West Des Moines

Whisper Point Park

Whisper Point is a quaint little park that backs up to some woods off of Bridgewood Boulevard.

It is a smaller and quiet park as it sits back behind some houses and is surrounded by woods on the backside.

Also, currently it is located where Bridgewood Boulevard ends so there is no traffic going by it at all.

Similar to the other parks in West Des Moines, Whisper Point has two playgrounds. One that is geared towards older kids, and one that is for younger kids.

The playground for the older kids has a boulder that the kids like to play on as well as a challenging rope bridge while the playground for younger kids has a slide, a tunnel, and simpler climbing structures.

Whisper Point Park also has a variety of swings.

It has a shelter with picnic tables as well as restrooms near the parking lot.

They also recently added a basketball court to the park.

If you are looking for a peaceful park near the Jordan Creek area, Whisper Point Park is a great option!

Location: 9125 Bridgewood Boulevard, West Des Moines

Pearson Park

Pearson Park is another phenomenal park to visit in West Des Moines.

There is a cute little bridge connecting the parking lot to the rest of the park.

After crossing the bridge, you will see Pearson Park’s impressive park shelter as well as its thrilling playground. 

The playground has many challenging obstacles and climbing elements. Kids love to play the Floor is Lava or challenge each other to make it around without touching the ground. 

There is also a smaller playground for the younger kids.

Pearson Park also has some swings and a small sandbox.

The park also has some rolling hills, a walking path, and mature trees surrounding it. 

There is also a basketball court.

Pearson Park also has restrooms open on a seasonal basis. 

This is definitely a park you don’t want to miss!

Location: 1256 19th Street, West Des Moines

American Legion Park

American Legion Park is located near Historic Valley Junction in West Des Moines. 

This park also has so much to offer its visitors. 

It is one of West Des Moines’ oldest parks but has had an updated playground and plus sprayground in recent years.

American Legion Park has two play structures for the kids. One has more challenging climbing elements for the older kids while the other is perfect for younger kids. 

There is an additional spiderweb type climbing structure that kids love!

The park also has a merry go round as well as swings and a couple of slides.

The sprayground at American Legion Park is also super fun and a perfect place to cool off on a hot summer day.

Additionally, American Legion Park has tennis courts, a softball field, basketball court,  horseshoe and shuffleboard courts, and even a skate park!

There is also a gorgeous large open field with mature trees to enjoy. 

American Legion Park also has restrooms available plus a nice park shelter as well!

Expert Tip

Make sure to bring swimsuits and towels as the kids will certainly want to play at the spray ground. After a visit to American Legion Park, consider checking out historic Valley Junction.

Location: 301 Vine Street, West Des Moines

Ashawa Park

Ashawa Park is extra special because of its location and panoramic views of the library and West Des Moines city campus. 

This park sits up on a small hill and offers stunning views of the sky. 

Ashawa Park is conveniently located near the West Des Moines Public library. 

This makes for an extra fun outing as you could park at the library and take the bike trail to Ashawa Park. 

There is a tunnel going under Mills Civic Parkway that the kids love walking through to get to this park. 

If you wanted to simply park in Ashawa Park’s parking lot, you could do that as well!

This park has a basketball court plus a fantastic field to run through and enjoy with a backstop too!

There is a paved trail surrounding the park that includes a storywalk. 

It has two different playgrounds for the kids to enjoy as well as some swings and a sandbox.

Ashawa Park also has a great park shelter and restrooms too!

Expert Recommendation

Consider bringing your bikes or scooters and parking at the library. You could visit the library and then take a bike ride or walk to Ashawa Park. Enjoy the story walk or bike around the pond and then head through the tunnel to Ashawa Park.

Location: 4431 Waterford Drive, West Des Moines

Fairmeadows Park

Fairmeadows Park is another lovely park to visit and play at in West Des Moines. I love that it has many mature trees that offer fantastic shade during hot summer days.

Note: There is no shade right in the playground area.

Fairmeadows Park, similar to the other West Des Moines parks has two fantastic playgrounds. One is geared towards younger kids and another for the older kids.

The kids especially enjoy this playground, too, because it has a two level tower with a tall tube slide. It also has lots of climbing challenges and obstacles for the kids to try out!

The smaller playground is perfect for younger kids with a couple of slides and a small table and bench under the play structure to sit on.

There are also swings including a baby swing and inclusive swing.

Fairmeadows Park has a park shelter with restrooms. It also has a sand volleyball court, basketball court, and tennis courts.

A nice paved trail runs through the park which is perfect for bike riders and walkers.

This park is perfect for a picnic with a blanket under the humongous mature trees or you can take advantage of the picnic tables at the park shelter.

Location: 543 22nd Street, West Des Moines

Scenic Valley Park

Scenic Valley Park is another newly updated park by West Des Moines Parks and Recreation.

It is a super unique playground that the kids were so excited about!

The style of both the larger and smaller playgrounds sparked my kids’ imaginations that they went crazy pretend playing.

They really loved the tall tower and two high slides.

Additionally, the smaller playground is perfect for younger kids to play on as well!

Scenic Valley Park also has swings in addition to a special rowing swing. 

The huge green turf mounds scattered throughout the playground were also hits with my kids. They loved climbing to the top of them. 

This playground also has a rubber ground which is so nice.

There is also a basketball court and backstop as well as a great trail for walking, running, or biking surrounding the park.

I also love this park because it is so open and you can really see the sky here. It is quite gorgeous. 

The park also has restrooms and a park shelter. 

I definitely recommend visiting Scenic Valley Park. The playground is different from all the others in the area. The kids will really love it!

Location: 1223 S 24th Court, West Des Moines

We are SO lucky to have a community with so many wonderful parks to enjoy.

If you are visiting the Des Moines area on a weekend getaway, West Des Moines is the perfect place to find a great park for the kids to play.

In addition to these parks, Central, Iowa has even more spectacular parks that are some of our favorites.

Besides parks, there are so many other super fun things to do in West Des Moines.

Sign up for my email list to stay updated on the newest parks and attractions in Central Iowa and beyond.

May you love your adventure! KW

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *