Top 12 Parks in Fresno

Last Updated on February 8, 2024 by Emily Johnson

Fresno, California is home to numerous beautiful parks for residents and visitors to enjoy. From sprawling regional parks to quaint neighborhood gems, there is a wonderful diversity of outdoor spaces to explore.

Park NameHighlights
Woodward Regional ParkLakes, trails, picnic areas, and sports facilities
Roeding ParkZoo, Japanese Garden, playgrounds, and picnic areas
Woodward Park Dog ParkFenced areas for off-leash dog exercise
Fresno County Blossom TrailScenic trail passing through orchards and vineyards
Lewis S. Eaton TrailheadTrailhead offering access to the San Joaquin River
Lost Lake Recreation AreaFishing, boating, and camping opportunities
Kearney ParkHistoric park featuring a historic Kearney Mansion
Dry Creek TrailheadTrailhead for hiking and equestrian activities
Woodward Park Equestrian TrailEquestrian trail within Woodward Regional Park
Oso de Oro Lake ParkFishing lake with picnic areas and sports facilities
Figarden Loop ParkNeighborhood park with playgrounds and green spaces
Todd Beamer ParkPlayground, sports fields, and picnic areas

Spend an afternoon picnicking with family, go for a jog on tree-lined trails, or enjoy community events in these top 12 parks showcasing the best Fresno has to offer.

Woodward Park

Name and Location: Woodward Park is a large public park located in the northern part of Fresno, California.

History and Significance: Established in the late 20th century, Woodward Park serves as one of the city’s most significant green spaces, known for its natural beauty and recreational facilities.

What to Expect: The park features expansive areas for picnics, jogging, and biking trails, a dog park, and several ponds. It’s also home to the Shinzen Japanese Garden.

Visitor Information: Open daily, with parking fees on weekends and holidays. It’s a popular spot for family outings and community events.

Woodward Park is one of Fresno’s premier parks, featuring 300 acres of vibrant gardens, unique outdoor art, and abundant recreational facilities. As the largest urban recreational and cultural park in the San Joaquin Valley, there is plenty to fill a day or more of fun.

Stroll through the Shinzen Friendship Garden to see elegant Japanese maples and relax by the koi ponds. Then venture out on the park’s extensive network of trails that wind through oak groves and behind iconic attractions like the Amphitheater and S.H. Woodson Wave Pool. The park’s Lewis S. Eaton Trail system also connects to the nearby San Joaquin River Parkway Trail for even more walking and biking opportunities.

Don’t miss special cultural sites like the Paul Ecke Central Valley Pioneer Village and Storyland/Playland. You’ll also find Fresno’s Frank H. Ball Park, home to softball games and tournaments, as well as rotary clubs and community festivals frequently held at Woodward Park.

Roeding Park

Name and Location: Roeding Park is located in central Fresno, California, and is one of the city’s oldest and most beloved parks.

History and Significance: Established in the early 1900s, Roeding Park has a long history of providing recreational opportunities to residents and visitors. It also houses the Fresno Chaffee Zoo.

What to Expect: Visitors can enjoy picnic areas, playgrounds, ponds, and walking paths. The zoo is a major attraction, offering a variety of animal exhibits and educational programs.

Visitor Information: There is an entrance fee for vehicles. The park and zoo have separate admission fees. Check the zoo’s website for hours and ticket information.

First opened in 1890, Roeding Park is Fresno’s oldest park featuring the Fresno Chaffee Zoo, Rotary Storyland Playland, and Storyland.

The zoo’s best-known exhibits feature large cats, elephants, bears, sea lions and meerkats in naturalistic habitats. Be sure to say hello to the snow leopards and feed the friendly giraffes. Or ride the Sea Lion Cove Express mini train for a fun overview of everything Roeding Park has to offer.

Younger kids love entering the fantasy world of Storyland Playland’s rides, while parents appreciate classics like the eggplant-shaped Humpty Dumpty slide. Storylandwalk-through exhibits also bring children’s fairytales and rhymes to life.

When you’re ready for a picnic or need shade, head over to 64-acre Roeding Park’s expansive lawns and gardens. You’ll find tennis courts, paths for walking or jogging, and lakes for feeding ducks too. With so much to do just minutes from downtown Fresno, it’s easy to spend all day playing at Roeding Park.

Rotary Storyland & Playland

Name and Location: Located within Roeding Park in Fresno, California, Rotary Storyland & Playland is a family-friendly amusement park.

History and Significance: Opened in the 1960s, these parks are designed to bring children’s stories to life and provide a fun, educational experience.

What to Expect: Storyland is a walk-through park with storybook-themed attractions, while Playland offers amusement rides for children. Both parks are great for young families.

Visitor Information: Open seasonally with an admission fee. Located within Roeding Park, so parking fees may apply.

Nestled inside the globally-renowned Roeding Park, Rotary Storyland & Playland has provided affordable family fun to Fresno community members and visitors for 70 years.

Storyland brings childhood nursery rhymes, fables and fairytales to life through dimensional play sets depicting scenes with Humpty Dumpty, the Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe, Jack and Jill and more classic childhood characters. Interactive components allow kids to slide, climb, spin and explore while learning language arts foundations.

The park’s classic carnival rides like the Carousel, Red Baron Planes and Jitterbug will take you back in time while thrilling kids both big and small. Train rides, paddle boats and special community events like Java & Jazz add even more smiles throughout the year.

With a mission to provide interactive, educational and affordable recreational activities for all, Rotary Storyland & Playland is a must-visit when exploring Fresno’s vibrant parks.

Regional Sports Complex & Soccer Fields

Name and Location: The Regional Sports Complex is located in south Fresno, California, and features multiple soccer fields and sports facilities.

History and Significance: Developed to meet the growing demand for sports and recreational spaces, the complex serves as a hub for local and regional sports events.

What to Expect: The complex includes well-maintained soccer fields, softball fields, and concessions. It hosts leagues, tournaments, and casual play.

Visitor Information: Facilities are available for rent. Check the city’s parks and recreation department for booking and usage fees.

Whether you want to host a casual game yourself or cheer on competitive league soccer, the Regional Sports Complex offers eight professional-grade fields for year-round play.

If you’re organizing a company team, college intramural, or youth rec league, these regulation fields are available to rent affordably. Their skinned infields and LED lighting allow for evening play. Plus, their west Fresno location provides easy highway access.

When major tournaments come to town, the Regional Sports Complex fields welcome hundreds of players and fans. Enjoy the party-like atmosphere with music, food trucks, merch stands, and fast action on the pitches. The Complex has hosted regional and national soccer events like the USA Cup and American Youth Soccer Organization (AYSO) tournaments.

Come experience the valley’s premier soccer destination for yourself! From recreational fun to competitive glory, you’re part of the game at Fresno’s Regional Sports Complex.

Helm Golf Course

Name and Location: Helm Golf Course is a public golf course located in the outskirts of Fresno, California.

History and Significance: This golf course provides affordable golfing options for the community and visitors, promoting the sport among a wider audience.

What to Expect: The course offers a challenging yet enjoyable experience for golfers of all skill levels. Facilities include a driving range and clubhouse.

Visitor Information: Open to the public with daily green fees. Tee times can be booked in advance.

Since 1925, golfers across California have aimed for birdies and eagles at scenic Helm Golf Course. These 18 championship holes built along the San Joaquin River offer a pleasant oasis from Fresno’s summer heat. Lush landscapes and the meandering stream that comes into play on 13 holes add extra hazards demanding accuracy alongside distance.

Their head professional and support staff provide excellent instruction for all skill levels. Practice your short game or work out any swing flaws at the driving range and putting greens. Expert club fitting and repairs are also available at Helm’s well-stocked golf shop. Plus, the course offers affordable daily-fee play, monthly memberships, leagues, and tournaments to meet all golfing budgets and abilities.

For delicious food with a view, visit the recently renovated Trophy’s Bar & Grill. And special event facilities can handle hosting fundraisers, weddings, and banquets up to 300 guests.

Whether starting out with lessons or already a consistent competitor, come see why celebrated golfers like Ken Venturi learned the links at Helm Golf Course.

Mayfair Community Center and Park

Name and Location: Mayfair Community Center and Park is situated in a residential area of Fresno, California, serving as a community hub.

History and Significance: The center and park have played a vital role in the community, offering recreational and educational programs for all ages.

What to Expect: The park includes playgrounds, sports courts, and picnic areas. The community center hosts various classes, workshops, and events.

Visitor Information: Open to the public with free entry to the park. Some programs and facilities at the community center may require registration or fees.

Ask neighbors about their favorite place to gather, play and celebrate life’s milestones in central Fresno, and chances are they’ll share memories made at Mayfair Community Center and Park.

Established in the 1950s, Mayfair Park was Fresno’s first recreation area built in a residential district to give nearby families green space for play. Its history from baseball games under the lights to long wedding reception guest lists highlights the park’s importance providing 85 acres of lawns, courts and community facilities.

Shoot hoops at the gym or play tennis on one of 25 courts. Kids thrill at the elaborately themed Rings of Fun and Universally Accessible playgrounds. There’s also a skate park for boarders, batting cages for future Giants, and shady spots perfect for lawn games outside the community center. Inside, take a pottery class, sign up forAdaptive recreation, or attend the Cinco de Mayo carnival.

No matter your age or ability, Mayfair Community Center & Park welcomes all Fresno residents as part of an ever-growing extended family.

Blossom Trail Park

Name and Location: Blossom Trail Park is a scenic park located in the rural outskirts of Fresno, California, known for its beautiful seasonal blooms.

History and Significance: The park is part of the larger Fresno County Blossom Trail, which celebrates the annual blooming of fruit and nut trees in the area.

What to Expect: Visitors can enjoy walking paths, picnic areas, and stunning views of the blooming trees in spring. It’s a popular spot for photography and nature walks.

Visitor Information: Access to the park is free. Best visited during the blooming season (late February to March), but open year-round.

Located in central Fresno’s Old Fig Garden neighborhood, 19.6 acre Blossom Trail Park charms with flowering trees, meandering Sloan Channel, and the elaborate Storybook Walk art exhibit.

Magical carved statues bring the pages of children’s storybooks like The Little Engine That Could to 3D life. Travel the trail together while reading posted excerpts for an immersive literacy adventure that engages diverse learning styles. Nearby, an Adaptive Playground’s specialized equipment like a circular swing and wheelchair-accessible surfaces promote play for all abilities.

Between story time and the playground, kids stay energized on the lawn or Blossom Trail’s other unique paths like The Comet II winding walkway. Have a picnic under plum and apricot trees or play another round on the basketball courts. Leashed dogs are also welcome at this Fresno hidden gem.

While smaller than many other city parks, beautiful Blossom Trail Park overflows with artful spaces for education and recreation.

Normal Community Center and Park

Name and Location: Normal Community Center and Park is located in a residential area of Fresno, California, offering recreational facilities and green space.

History and Significance: Established to provide a recreational and social gathering space for the community, the center and park support local engagement and wellness.

What to Expect: Facilities include a community center with meeting rooms and activity spaces, outdoor playgrounds, sports courts, and picnic areas.

Visitor Information: The park is open to the public daily. Some facilities at the community center may require booking or have usage fees.

This 13-acre park is named honoring its East Fresno neighborhood – Normal Area One. Since Normal Community Center & Park opened in 1969, generations have made memories at its facilities from shooting hoops in the gym to special events. Today, its baseball diamonds host players as young as three, while umbrellas regularly shade groups gathered at family reunions and birthday parties on the park’s lawn.
Inside the building, pottery and dance classes are available to continue lifelong learning. Conference rooms also provide space for local clubs to meet as well as memorial services saying goodbye to cherished community members.
While smaller than some citywide parks, Normal Community Center & Park remains an important part of Fresno living by bringing everyday wellness and special occasions to its street.

Regional Parks System

Name and Location: The Regional Parks System encompasses various parks and recreational facilities across the Fresno, California, area.

History and Significance: This system represents Fresno’s commitment to preserving green spaces and providing diverse recreational opportunities to its residents.

What to Expect: The system includes large regional parks with unique features, such as lakes, sports complexes, botanical gardens, and trails, catering to a wide range of outdoor activities.

Visitor Information: Many parks are open daily with free entry, though some facilities within the parks may have fees or require reservations.

Beyond Fresno’s city limits, the Fresno County Regional Parks System offers a wealth of outdoor recreation. Local streams, lakes, and mountain vistas help urban residents find wide-open spaces to hike, fish, picnic, golf, boat, ride horses, camp overnight and enjoy nature just a short drive from home.

Millerton Lake State Recreation Area offers bass fishing, houseboat rentals and lakeside camping along the shimmering shores of this reservoir formed by Friant Dam. Launch your own kayak and canoe or book a sunset dinner cruise for breathtaking waterfront vistas.

In the Sierra foothills, Lost Lake offers family fun with paddle boats to rent, fishing for trout or bass, picnic sites and the chance to cool off with a swim during warm months. Nearby, Laton Community Park has an off-highway vehicle recreation area that’s become a regional magnet for ATV, dirt bike and 4×4 fans.

Closer to town, the 2,500-acre San Joaquin River Parkway draws nature lovers. Miles of trails allow for hiking, jogging and horseback riding with opportunities to spot herons, egrets, beavers and other wildlife native to river ecologies.

Remember, Fresno County parks beyond the city offer even more ways to appreciate the special intersection of green spaces and local culture.

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