Nothing can bring out a smile, and a happy squeal, like a splash of cool water on a hot day. As temperatures rise — and just in time for the official beginning of summer — we’ve rounded up splash parks, spraygrounds, splash pads and play fountains (many of them free) for your watery fun. Note that sometimes spots are closed for maintenance or during inclement weather.
Water parks and other paid attractions
APEX CENTRE Located in Gabe Nesbitt Park, the Apex Centre has four pools including an outside water park with slides, spray features and a shallow-water kiddie pool. $9-$14 for a daily pass. 3003 Alma Road, McKinney.
BAHAMA BEACH This southern Dallas water park houses slides and numerous other aquatic attractions, such as a winding lazy river and an interactive rain playground. $11-$15 for ages 3 and older. 1895 Campfire Circle, Dallas.
DALLAS AQUATIC CENTERS Several new aquatic centers have opened across Dallas, including the Cove at Samuell-Grand, Fretz and Crawford parks. These large city-run water parks feature eight-lane lap pools, slides, climbing walls, lazy rivers and children’s pools. New, smaller aquatic parks are open for the season at Tietze Park, Lake Highlands North Park and Kidd Springs. Check the website for details.
EPIC WATERS Grand Prairie’s 800,000 square foot, indoor-outdoor water playground has a UV-protected retractable roof, a 600-foot lazy river, a FlowRider surfing simulator, a Lasso Loop body slide, the Aquanaut inner tube ride and Rascal’s Roundup, a special area for little ones. For more adventure, step into the recently opened Epic Waves, a 10,000-square-foot outdoor pool that surges 4-foot waves at 10-minute intervals throughout the day. Epic Waters is open year-round, and Epic Waves is open through Labor Day. 2970 Epic Place, Grand Prairie. $17-$34 for ages 4 and older.