Denver receives more than 300 days of sunshine a year, so kids can play outdoors here year-round. Denver has a huge parks system, with plenty of places to run around, swing from the jungle gym or even go tubing down a river. Here are our top picks for the best parks for kids in Denver.

Confluence Park

15th Street
Denver, CO 80202
(720) 913-1311

This popular Denver park is located at the confluence of Platte River and Cherry Creek River, and all that water means some serious fun. Tubers, waders, kayakers and canoeists all enjoy this river fun right smack in the heart of the city. The water is fairly gentle (although it can get high during spring runoff), and children can walk down the man-made steps into the water and begin splashing each other while parents watch from a safe, “right here if you need me” distance. Heck, why don’t you join the fun? Sun yourself along the river or have a picnic under the shady trees nearby. Life is good in the Mile High City. Hours: 5 am to 11 pm daily.

City Park

17th Avenue & York Street
Denver, CO 80205
(720) 913-1311

City Park isn’t just a park for kids, but rather a quintessential Denver experience. Located next to the Denver Zoo and the Museum of Nature and Science, this park has been drawing locals for generations. There’s a big fountain kids can play in, and trying to guess where the water will shoot up next is a favorite pastime. Rent a paddle boat and head onto Ferril Lake, or take a nap under the shade trees. Our favorite pastime is having a big picnic at the park, and then heading into the Denver Zoo for the afternoon. Hours: 5 am to 11 pm daily.

Belleview Park

5001 South Inca Street
Denver, CO 80110
(303) 762-2680

Belleview Park is a favorite park for those with preschool and school-aged children. While this Denver Park has the usual playground and plenty of grass for a good game of kickball, the highlight is the miniature train ride and animal petting zoo. For just a few bucks, you can entertain the kids for the whole afternoon. Tickets to the Belleview Children’s Farm are $1.50, and kids (and parents) can pet cows, pigs, goats, sheep and more. There’s even a life-size fiberglass cow waiting to be milked and help kids understand life on the farm. Hours: Tuesday through Saturday, 10 am to 4 pm; Sunday, 11 am to 4 pm; Mondays, closed.

– Janna Graber