Worldwide icon-chevron-right North America icon-chevron-right United States icon-chevron-right Florida icon-chevron-right Miami icon-chevron-right The best water parks in Miami to keep you cool
Rapids Water Park
Photograph: Courtesy Rapids Water Park

The best water parks in Miami to keep you cool

Our favorite water parks in Miami are the perfect option for those looking for some fun in the sun away from the beach

By Ryan Pfeffer, Virginia Gil and Krista Diamond
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The best water parks in Miami can offer refuge in a place that gets hot—and stays hot—just about every month of the year. So when you find yourself in the city, far from the best Miami beaches and without a Miami swimming pool in sight, find refuge at one of these water parks. Inexpensive and accessible from most neighborhoods, these water parks are a perfect family outing, slightly cheaper and less stressful than rounding up the crew for a trip to one of the many kid-friendly restaurants in Miami. Whether you’re looking to wade or work out, ride a slide or lounge in style, the best water parks in Miami provide tons of way to stay cool in style.

RECOMMENDED: The best things to do in Miami

Best water parks in Miami

Tidal Cove
Tidal Cove
Photograph: WorldRedEye.com

1. Tidal Cove

Things to do Play spaces Aventura

This huge new addition to Aventura’s JW Marriott Miami Turnberry Resort & Spa is about the best hotel perk any kid could ask for. Free to guests, and open to the public, Tidal Cove packs in all the water-park essentials—slides, a lazy river, a FlowRider surf simulator and a splash zone for the kiddies. Plus, it boasts two full bars and cabanas for the grown-ups to chill under and sip frozé.

Must ride: The Boomerango for a brief, but terrifying, moment of near-weightlessness. 

Rapids Water Park
Rapids Water Park
Photograph: Courtesy Rapids Water Park

2. Rapids Water Park

Things to do Play spaces

Every true South Florida kid has a memory of Rapids Water Park. The sprawling park has been a favorite birthday party spot for thousands and thousands of kids thanks to its selection of insane water slides and epic lazy river. The commute (an hour and a half from Miami) is far from convenient, but folks keep flocking to Rapids despite the distance, which speaks to the park’s quality. 

Must ride: The Lazy River.

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Venetian Pool
Venetian Pool
Photograph: Shutterstock/Marco Borghini

3. Venetian Pool

Things to do Coral Gables

This is the crème de la crème of fancy pools in Miami. Created in 1923 from a naturally occurring coral rock quarry, the 820,000-gallon pool is fed by a fresh-water spring. Surrounded by palm trees, shady fields and beautiful porticos, it’s a lushly fabulous way to beat the Miami heat. Everyone three years of age and older is welcome March through November.

Must ride: Swim up to the waterfall.

Surfside Community Center
Surfside Community Center
Photograph: Courtesy Surfside Community Center

4. Surfside Community Center

Things to do Play spaces

The aquatics area here is far from your average neighborhood pool, boasting zero-depth entry, a kids’ play area (the Tot Lot) and multiple waterslides, as well as a facility for recreational and lap swimming. You need to find a friend in Surfside, however; the center is open only to residents and their guests.

Must ride: All of it because getting in is tough.

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Zoo Miami Ocean Voyage
Zoo Miami Ocean Voyage
Photograph: Courtesy Zoo Miami/Ron Magill

5. Zoo Miami

Things to do Miami

The zoo in town offers playground-esque water attractions. Think giant spray fountains, a “whale tail waterfall” and overflowing buckets. Check out Ocean Voyage inside the Playworld Playground, and the Fiesta Fountain at the Amazon and Beyond Village Plaza. Both are great places to take your kid, or the kids you’re entertaining, to stomp around and get totally soaked while you hang back in the shady alcoves.

Must ride: The Fiesta Fountain.

Grapeland Water Park
Grapeland Water Park
Photograph: Courtesy Grapeland Water Park

6. Grapeland Water Park

Things to do Grapeland Heights

This is a public attraction owned and operated by the city that offers a lazy river, a few playground areas, a pirate-themed area and a shipwreck water playground. There are wade pools for toddlers and large recreational pools for more experienced swimmers, plus splashy slides for thrill seekers.

Must ride: The Pirate’s Plunge.

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McDonald Water Park
McDonald Water Park
Photograph: Courtesy McDonald Water Park

7. McDonald Water Park

Things to do Hialeah

The water attraction set amid the beautiful 17-acre park has so much to offer. There’s a wave pool, waterfall, lazy river, tot lot and party areas. It’s a public park, again, with a water playground, a wave pool, lazy river, waterfall, splash pad, party areas, and a snack bar. It’s absolutely perfect for day parties or birthdays, and the price is right, too.

Must ride: The 1,000-foot lazy river.

Pinecrest Gardens, Wildlife and attractions, Miami
Pinecrest Gardens, Wildlife and attractions, Miami
Photograph: Courtesy Pinecrest Gardens

8. Pinecrest Gardens Splash’N Play

Things to do Games and hobbies Pinecrest

Perfect for little ones, Pinecrest Gardens’ mini splash pad offers water features galore and shaded benches for parents who chaperone. When the water play is tapped out, take a stroll through the gorgeous gardens and then head to the snack bar.

Must ride: Run through the water spouts.

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Bucky Dent Water Park
Bucky Dent Water Park
Photograph: Shutterstock

9. Bucky Dent Water Park

Things to do Hialeah Gardens

Note: This venue is temporarily closed.

This Hialeah gem has an activity pool with a slide, and two twin 30-ft water slides for added excitement. There’s also a zero-depth-entry swimming pool, concessions and plenty of room for sitting. The water park is only open on weekends, though, so don't expect any aquatic fun on school days.

Must ride: The twin slides.

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