Looking for free things to do with kids in Lehigh Valley? Get 'em outside!
In terms of family activities, few things beat a good playground. They’re free. They’re outdoors. And they’re a place for the kids to run amok that isn’t your house. Lehigh Valley has a slew of amazing playgrounds and so to narrow down our list we considered not only the general awesomeness of the setup, but its proximity to other fun things—for kids and parents alike.
1. Covered Bridge Park Playground
2465 Wehr Mill Road, Orefield
This epic, sprawling playground offers a two-for-one deal. The young ones (ages 2 to 5) can clamber over a garden-themed, floor-is-lava-style (“Quick! Jump to the frog!”) balance course adjacent to a playset with a faux rock wall and spiral slide. Then, for the big kids, there’s a three-story, multi-slide playset that also has bridges, tunnels, and a zip line. Parents, there are plenty of benches, for when you inevitably need a break.
Nearby fun Covered Bridge Park also features an 18-hole disc golf course, as well as baseball, football, and soccer fields. Fuel up at Grill Life Barbecue, a nearby food truck.
2. Scott Park/Riverside Park
Larry Holmes Drive, Easton
These dueling playgrounds sit when the Delaware and Lehigh Rivers meet. Your kids probably won’t care about that factoid because they’ll be too busy careening down twisty slides, summiting rock walls, and mad-dashing to the open teeter-totter seat. There are trails down to the water, which is always asking for a rock to be chucked into it, and if you’re lucky you might all see a real live choo-choo train.
Nearby fun: The Easton Farmers’ Market is basically right there (check their site for hours), as is Crayola Experience™. Another more-hidden spot is Colonial Pizza, home of the original “upside down” pizza, a short drive away.
3. SouthSide Greenway Playground
Follow the Greenway east off Webster Street, between Mechanics & Fourth Streets, Bethlehem
It’s not the largest on our list, but this Spiderman-hued playground feels like something that superhero would love: ladders to scale, slides to zip down, and even a web to climb. There are also oversized chimes to ring and a xylophone to bang out your own soundtrack. City planners plopped the park right on the South Bethlehem Greenway, too, so your kids can bike or scooter to and fro on the paved trail.
Nearby fun: Walk the two blocks for poutine at The Flying V or make the short drive to the SteelStacks™ for more height-defying fun.
4. Cedar Beach Playground
2600 Parkway Boulevard, Allentown
You’ve going to need a few hours for this one. Slow-sloping ramps wind past sensory activities and split off into tubes and tunnels. Slatted steps ascend to gulp-inducing slides that plummet to the (rubber) surface below. Rope ladders connect to swinging pedestals, which link to bridges, and there’s just so much to do here.
Nearby fun: Cedar Beach Park is also home to several basketball courts, a sand volleyball pit, a pool, and Allentown's Malcolm Gross Rose Garden. If you’re hungry, there’s a Yocco’s for hot dogs and pierogies within striking distance.
5. Lone Lane Park
30 Lone Lane, Macungie
This shaded metropolis of monkey bars and bumpy slides also features large boulders that kids can climb (and inevitably jump off of). The parking is ample, and it’s encircled by a massive park for hiking, biking, or rolling out a picnic blanket.
Nearby fun: You’re close to two iconic Lehigh Valley diners—the Starlite off Route 100 and Chris’ off Tilghman—and you can’t go wrong at either.