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The Best Parks in Houston

Houston has a way of surprising its visitors time and time again. And, perhaps one of the most surprising facts about this dynamic urban hub is the number of public parks it has for everyone to enjoy — so many, in fact, that a list of the best parks in Houston comes in handy.

Lifelong Houstonians already know that their city takes pride in manicured greenery and well-maintained trails. But, if you’re just now browsing apartments in Houston, this is your chance to discover the best parks for yourself.

Hermann Park


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There are a ton of things to do in Houston, and exploring Hermann Park is right up there. Located in the Museum District, Hermann Park also hosts the Houston Zoo and the Hermann Park Railroad — just to name a few. No matter your age, this 445-acre park will manage to surprise you. Find your zen in the Japanese Garden or have some splashing fun with the cool water feature designed to make the Houston heat more bearable.

Donovan Park

If you’re raising children in Houston or have them with you while visiting, this is a must-see spot to have on your list. The textbook definition of a neighborhood playground at its best, Donovan Park gives kids something to do — and then some — including wooden play structures, a train, a fortress and a grassy hill you just know your kids are going to take turns rolling down. And, if you have a bike, make sure to also explore the Heights Hike & Bike Trail.

Houston Arboretum & Nature Center


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Located next to Memorial Park (another green gem in Houston), the Arboretum is so much more than just a park. The education center and nature sanctuary spans across 150 acres, including hiking trails, a fenced-in play area and even a balancing bridge. If you love wildlife, take advantage of their guided tours and learning experiences — you won’t regret it!

Gerald D. Hines Waterwall Park

Better known by locals as the former Transco Waterwall and Williams Waterwall, the Gerald D. Hines Waterwall Park is one of those places that you just have to see for yourself. This huge, semicircular waterfall might just make you forget that you’re still in the heart of Houston. The 65-foot-tall wall of falling water is the perfect centerpiece for this serene park, which is also great for walks, especially among the towering oaks that line its trails.

Eleanor Tinsley Park


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Eleanor Tinsley Park is the outdoor area if you want to take the pulse of the city! People gravitate here for all kinds of reasons — jogging, picnics, coffee breaks, taking a breather during lunchtime, and romantic walks with your loved one, as well as less-romantic walks with your four-legged friend. It even has a skate park! So, it’s no wonder that this is everyone’s pick when it comes to selecting an all-around park.

Alexander Deussen Park

If acres of green grass are what you seek, then this park is for you. More than 300 acres of parkland make the Deussen Park a favorite for all kinds of group activities — sports days, club meetings, after-school gatherings, you name it. It also includes jogging tracks, outdoor exercise equipment and even play areas.

Buffalo Bayou Park

Don’t let the fact that it’s last on our list fool you: we actually saved the best for last! Most likely, Buffalo Bayou Park is the first name that pops into mind when thinking about green spaces in Houston. It borders the bayou, which means there’s always a gentle breeze in the air, and art installations pop up on your way almost as often as the trees. It even has a dog park and doggy trails that are just perfect for exploring with your furry friend. Finally, the views of the Houston skyline are just the cherry on top.

Alexandra Ciuntu
Alexandra Ciuntu
Alexandra is a creative writer and researcher for RentCafe. With a background in e-learning content writing and a passion for knowledge-sharing platforms, she's covered topics from prop-tech to renters insurance to interior design tips. Very familiar with the renter lifestyle herself, Alexandra enjoys researching and writing about renter demographic shifts and residential real estate market trends as much as she loves writing about how to get along with roommates. You can connect with Alexandra via email. Alexandra’s work includes collaborations with financial and business publications. Her articles have been featured in several national and international online publications, including the New York Times, Barrons, Inman, Forbes, Architectural Digest, Marketwatch, Bisnow, and Curbed. Her educational background includes a B.A. in Japanese and English and an M.A. in Journalism and Cultural Studies.

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