This time of year, you may find yourself trapped with some rowdy young ‘uns and need some fun places for the kiddos to play. This list of indoor play areas around Denver should come in handy.
I’ve included all sorts of activities, some free and some with an admission fee. For some of the pricier attractions, I noted if there’s a Groupon available (and you should always check Groupon yourself for those not marked, as new Groupons pop up from time to time).
This list is by no means comprehensive as there are a gazillion spots across the metro area. A few spots have closed in the last year, others are still to re-open. Know of something that should be in the list? Just email email@example.com.
Free Play Areas and Activities
Apex Clubhouse Adventure Playground:
The multi-level play area at Arvada’s Apex Center is “paradise” for kids ages 1 to 10 (older siblings are allowed with their younger brother or sister too). There are tubes, rope ladders, slides, pogo poles, climbing structures and much more.
All children must be accompanied by an adult. Even though all other activities at Apex Center carry a fee, the Adventure Playground is free and open to all — even those who do not live in the district. 13150 W. 72nd Ave., Arvada.
Cherry Creek Shopping Center:
For years this spot has hosted a quaint play area featuring large models the kids can crawl around on. Once it was breakfast foods, then colorful dinosaurs. Located on the lower level of the mall near Macy’s, the kid’s spot has limit of 42-inches, and doesn’t allow food or strollers inside.
Keep in mind it also closes everyday from 2 to 2:30 p.m. for cleaning, but is otherwise open when the mall is. 3000 E. 1st Ave.
Just about every location have an enclosed play area where little kids (usually up to the age of 5) can climb and slide. Outside of each play area is bin full of Purell wipes, so little hands can stay clean before and after playtime.
Keep in mind all Chick-fil-A establishments are closed on Sundays. Also, double check your local spot, many of the play areas were shuttered during the pandemic and not all have opened up again.
Most local libraries have a children’s area with toys, games, puzzles and other fun activities, plus story times for all ages. Even better, librarians no longer “shush” noisy kids (or kids at heart). Next time you go, ask the librarian for some book recommendations to help get your kids reading at home too.
Lookout Mountain Nature Center:
A super way to connect with the natural world on top of Lookout Mountain. Offers a hands-on play room with tons of activities and observatory. Currently the space is only open Fridays from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
McDonald’s Indoor PlayPlace:
More than a dozen locations in the metro area house indoor PlayPlaces for ages 3 to 9. You’ll spend a little on lunch or a drink, but you have to eat anyway.
When you use the website’s restaurant locator, be sure to click on “Show More” and then check the “Indoor PlayPlace” box to find the restaurant closest to you.
Children’s Museum of Denver at Marsico Campus:
Located in the heart of Denver, this kid spot has so much to do inside you can go again and again. There’s art to be done, a firetruck and fire safety area to explore, vet’s office complete with stuffed animals, plenty of STEM activities, a water feature and more.
The museum is open Wednesday through Sunday, and you need to book tickets in advance. It costs $17 for those 2 to 59, and $15 for ages 1 and 60-plus.
The best bet to save some money at this amazing attraction is to get a membership or come on one of the free nights. 2121 Children’s Museum Dr., Denver.
CU Museum of Natural History:
Has everything from dinosaur fossils to cool current scientific research. The Discovery Corner is a hands-on exhibit for young children and their favorite adults to explore together. Touch real museum specimens, play with puppets, color pictures, and read books.
Admission is free (a donation of $3 for adults and $1 for children/seniors is appreciated). Henderson Building, 15th & Broadway, Boulder.
Denver Museum of Nature and Science:
Sure it’s fun to wander around and look at dinosaur bones, dioramas and Egyptian mummies. But, there’s also the Discover Zone at the museum, perfect for toddlers and up. Explore how water moves objects, dig for bones in the rubber sand, make art and have a good time.
Admission to the kid area is included in the ticket cost, which ranges between $13.95 and $19.95, with kids 3 and under free. Get a membership to save money. Just make sure to book your tickets in advance. 2001 Colorado Blvd., Denver.
This truly is a sandbox of fun complete with cars, trucks, buckets and plenty of shovels to go around. Sand play starts at $14 for a half-hour, and goes up to $27 for two hours. The play space is open Tuesday through Sunday from 9 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. 8601 W. Cross Drive, Littleton.
WOW! Children’s Museum:
The museum offers story times, hands-on science activities and performances. Kids can pretend to be a pirate, milk a cow, shop the supermarket, create ginormous bubbles, practice their medical skills in The Little Clinic and much more.
Admission is free for children under 1, $13 for ages 1 to 11 and $7 for adults. Memberships available. 110 N. Harrison Ave., Lafayette.
Activate Indoor Park:
Offers trampolines, bounce castle, laser tag, slack line, rock climbing and more. Check website for prices which vary by day and the jumper’s age. 9979 Wadsworth Pkwy., Westminster.
Airhouse Adventure Park
Offers aerial ropes course, cardio wall, mechanical bull, extreme dodgeball, mini golf, video games with trampolines, special play area for younger kids and more. Check website for prices which vary by day and activity area. 14200 E. Alameda Ave., Aurora.
Though it’s called Defy Denver, this busy spot is actually in Aurora. Inside there are 50,000 square-feet of connected trampolines (60 tramps in all), plus a Ninja obstacle course, slackline, trapeze, aerial silks and foam pits. Check website for prices which vary by day and the participant’s age. 1400 S. Abilene St., Aurora. Groupon deal available.
Has 50,000 square-feet of connected trampolines (60 tramps in all), plus a Ninja obstacle course, slackline, trapeze, aerial silks and foam pits. Check website for prices which vary by day and the participant’s age. 9925 Grant St., Thornton. Groupon deal available.
Kookalooz Space Playground (aka KidSpace):
Don’t let the name change fool you, this is the same indoor children’s playground as it was before. Once there, little ones can run, jump, crawl, slide, and bounce, all while enjoying a hands-on STEM museum, including a planetarium. Plenty of fun for the kids.
Kids 3 to 12 are $15, 6 mos. to 2 years are $8.50. Adults are $3. Planetarium shows included in ticket. Open Monday to Thursday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday, Saturday & Sunday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. 6805 W. 88th St., Broomfield.
Play rooms such as home, school, grocery stores, post office, fire stations, theater, animal hospital, parks, and more that encourages kids to use their imagination. Puppet space, tumbling area, bounce house. Open play all day every day. Suited for kids 8 and younger.
Pricing depends on day (higher or weekends and holidays). Kids $14. First two adults are FREE (each additional $5) and crawlers and infants are free. Check website for hours which vary by day. 7562 South University Blvd., Suite GG, Centennial.
An 40,000-square-foot indoor park with so many trampolines, ladders, slides, mazes and more. Open everyday from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., and until 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday. Entry passes are $10 per person for one hour. Bring socks, grippy socks preferred. 452 Sable Blvd., Aurora.
Little Monkey Bizness Parker:
Play areas feature inflatable obstacle course, jumps and slides, special toddler area, play structures and more. Open play admission is $13.95 from 9 months to 2 years, $16.95 for ages 2 to 10.
The first adult is free, but extra grownups are $2 each. Open play starts at 9 a.m. everyday and goes until 1 p.m., save the weekend when it closes at 12 p.m. for parties. 10430 S. Progress Way, Parker.
Little Monkey Bizness Westminster:
Play areas feature inflatable obstacle course, jumps and slides, special toddler area, play structures and more. Open play admission is $10 per 9 to 35 months, and $15 for 3 to 10. This 11 and up are $5. Visit every day from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., and until 4 p.m. on Fridays. 14693 Orchard Pkwy.,Westminster.
Miller Activity Complex (MAC) in Castle Rock:
This is a huge, two-story facility housing an indoor leisure pool with slide, zero-entry section, water table and vortex whirlpool. Also batting cages, children’s play structure with 23-foot-tall slide, BEAM interactive floor games, 18-hole golf simulator, indoor full-sized synthetic field, trampoline with 16 trampoline beds ($15 to $18) and a lounge with LEGO table and train table.
Daily admission is $7 to $8 for adults, depending on your place of residency. Discounts for children and seniors. Extra fees to use trampoline, batting cages and golf simulator.
Open Monday to Saturday from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., Sunday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. 1375 W. Plum Creek Pkwy., Castle Rock.
Paul Derda Recreation Center:
Not too long ago this Broomfield rec center decided to revamp the playground and make it indoors. Now kids 3 and under can play for free, and it’s just $6 for ages 4 to 7 (the oldest you can be in the kid’s zone).
Bonus, this spot also sports an indoor pool complete with a lazy river, water slide, toddler water slide and family “spa” area. 1 DesCombes Dr., Broomfield.
Play Street Museum:
Kids have fun imagining and pretending in the Town Square or exploring the many interactive exhibits and kid’s activities in the educational play space. Adults can join in on the adventure, or sit back and relax while their children discover a world that is just their size.
Admission is $13 per child age 1 and older (and it’s charged for those under 1 if they don’t have a paying sibling with them). Keep in mind this space is a shoe-free zone, so plan accordingly.
Open play from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday to Friday. 9370 S. Colorado Blvd., Ste. A-2, Highlands Ranch.
SkyZone in Arvada:
This trampoline center features a Foam Zone, obstacle course, wall-to-wall trampolines, jousting, aerial basketball, trampoline dodgeball and more. Check website for hours and prices which vary by day, time and the jumper’s age. 7330 W. 52nd. Ave., Arvada.
SkyZone in Parker:
This trampoline center features a Foam Zone, wall-to-wall trampolines, aerial basketball and volleyball and trampoline dodgeball. Check website for hours and prices which vary by day, time and the jumper’s age. 9851 S. Parker Rd., Parker.
Houses a 23,000 square feet Indoor Water Park with multiple pools, water slides, a vortex, “beach” play area and lap pool. Daily admission starts at $5.25 and goes up to $9.50 depending on age and resident status. Bonus, the admission includes use of the entire Apex Center and activities except ice skating. 13150 W. 72nd Ave., Arvada.
Aurora Central Recreation Center:
Features a lap pool, an indoor wave pool, a lazy river, an interactive water slide, Kid Zone with fountains and shipwreck slide. Drop-in admission is $4 to $5, depending on your age. They also sell monthly or 10-visit passes. And, if you’re a resident of Aurora it’s even less. 18150 E. Vassar Pl., Aurora.
Gaylord of the Rockies:
Though this is a grand hotel near the Denver International Airport, it’s also a great place to go and enjoy a day at the pool. It has an indoor and outdoor pool, complete with water slides, hot tubs and a lazy river. You do need to be a guest of the hotel to take advantage, but it’s worth it. Visit the website for hours.
Lone Tree Recreation Center:
Boasts an 88-foot body/tube water slide, leisure pool with lazy river, spray features, children’s slide, basketball hoop and hot tub. Daily admission is $5.75 to $7.75 for adults, depending on your place of residency. Discounts for children and seniors. Punch cards and a Household Pass (2 adults and 3 children) also available. 10249 Ridgegate Circle, Lone Tree.
Ridge Recreation Center:
Has a body flume slide with splash-down area, current channel, floor geysers, bubble bench and children’s play structure with tot slide. Daily pool admission is between $4.25 to $7.75 depending on age and place of residency. Those who can’t walk yet are free. 6513 S. Ward St., Littleton.
Trails Recreation Center:
Facility has leisure pool with lazy river, lap pool, activity pool, water slides and hot tub. Daily admission is $5.75 to $7.75 for adults, depending on your place of residency. Discounts for children and seniors. 16799 E. Lake ave., Centennial.
Westminster City Park Recreation Center:
Features three indoor pools with slides, a current channel, rope swing, jumping platform, rock climbing wall, a play feature, hot tubs, steam room and sauna. Men’s and women’s locker rooms and a spacious family changing area with four individual changing rooms. Admission is $4.75 to $7.50 per day depending on your age place of residency. Those 3 and under are free. 10455 Sheridan Blvd., Westminster.