Pleasant Park in Apex, NC: Epic Playground + Splash Pad!

Amy Hartle

 📍 3400 Pleasant Plains Rd, Apex, NC 27502

🐦We’re currently on a mission to visit ALL the playgrounds and places for family fun in the NC Triangle. If you don’t see something posted on our site yet, it’s definitely in the works!

Pleasant Park in Apex is one of the coolest playgrounds we’ve been to in the Raleigh area. Recently opened in fall 2023, Pleasant Park is a 92-acre park that seemingly has everything. There are 6 multi-purpose fields, tennis, pickleball, and basketball courts, plus, the main attraction for Triangle kids, an impressive 1.5 acre Enchanted Forest playground that has 9 inclusive play villages for all ages and abilities.

Oh, and did I mention there’s a splash pad, too!? This opened in spring 2024!

Colorful playground equipment at Pleasant Park in Apex, NC, with a focus on a red spherical climbing frame in the foreground. The background shows a series of interconnected play structures with blue roofs, climbing nets, and orange accents, all under a bright blue sky

A Mom’s Review of Pleasant Park in Apex NC

Now, before you start to think I’m only here to rave about this playground, I want to let you know that it’s my goal to share the good and bad of all the playgrounds we visit in the greater Raleigh area. I’m looking at these spots through the eyes of a toddler mom, and I want to share my honest impressions with you.

That said, I WAS impressed by this park. I wanted to jump and play on all the structures alongside my son Malcolm (21 months) and my young adopted siblings (ages 6 and 7).

Let’s start with a list of playground amenities that are important to parents:

An innovative playground structure in Apex, with a green and purple color scheme, features a variety of play equipment including swings, slides, and climbing nets. The design incorporates natural elements like rock features, all under a clear blue sky with bare trees in the background, suggesting a cool but sunny day

We visited Pleasant Park in Apex on a sunny January day. It was fairly chilly out, so the park wasn’t too crowded, but I’m told this playground can get very busy, especially on the weekends.

I’m not surprised! It’s a really unique playground with a bright green 35-foot tall slide as the centerpiece. My siblings ran towards the playground the second we arrived.

A lively and engaging playground scene in the Triangle area, with children and families enjoying various play structures. The playground includes a tall green and yellow canopy, purple slides, and a web of climbing ropes, set against a backdrop of leafless trees and a bright blue sky, capturing a sense of active community fun.
Running towards fun!

Ages 6 and 7, my little adopted siblings were the perfect age for this playground. The climbing structures were super fun for them but also a little challenging and they had to work their courage up to go down the big slide!

A captivating playground near Raleigh, North Carolina, with a prominent green tube slide and intricate climbing structures. The play area is dotted with vibrant red, blue, and yellow safety surfacing, under a bright blue sky, inviting children for outdoor fun and adventure

But the playground had enough for my toddler to enjoy as well! While we spent most of our time on the swings (he is absolutely obsessed), we also got to explore the smaller structures ideal for younger kids. My mom and I were exclaiming over how cute they were; a little yellow house with toddler-sized chairs beside it, an adorable pirate ship with slide.

A wide-angle view of a modern and colorful playground with a variety of equipment including a green tube slide, climbing nets, and a whimsical playhouse with a white picket fence. The playground's surface is a mosaic of bright blue rubber, and the setting is a sunny day with clear skies, inviting active play in a safe and imaginative environment.

As a mom, I really appreciate the playground surface used on the ground in Pleasant Park. It’s rubbery and slightly bouncy, which in my opinion is so much better and safer than mulch or other surfaces. Also, it’s colorful and fun to look at here, all in rainbow colors!

Like I said before, I am told this playground can become quite crowded on sunny weekend days. While I am sure that’s true, the playground benefits from being in a large space and having 9 separate play areas to explore. This helps to keep the main climbing structures from becoming the only attraction. During our visit, I saw most of the kids flocking to this spinning merry-go-round thing, in fact!

An interactive music-themed area at a Raleigh area playground, featuring a 'Marvelous Melody' installation with colorful illustrations and a series of vertical chimes. An open book-shaped sign provides educational content, inviting children to create music against the backdrop of a clear blue sky and leafless trees

One of the coolest play areas was a musical spot, where you could play a giant xylophone and other musical flowers by hitting them with soft mallets.

Another element I really appreciate about Pleasant Park is the abundance of seating areas they’ve included. With benches, picnic tables, and more, there’s no shortage of spots to rest your weary parent behind (if you’re not chasing after a toddler, that is), and these are also welcome spots to let your kids take a rest break with snacks and water.

Splashlantis Splash Pad at Pleasant Park

a sunny day at a splash pad in north carolina. the concrete is painted with bright blue to mimic a river

In May 2024, the splash pad at Pleasant Park opened for the first time. We went the day it opened to check it out! And the verdict is…it’s great!

This is a small splash pad that is ideal for younger kids in particular. My toddler loved it and I found the splash elements just perfect for his age. Plus, it’s fully enclosed by a fence, so I feel a lot better with him running around here.

Part of the splash pad is even under some shade (hallelujah!) so you don’t have to bake in the Carolina summer heat.

Where to Grab Coffee Near Pleasant Park

As I share more playground reviews on Raleigh Family Adventure, I want to include something that is very important to me as a parent: the closest place to get a good cup of coffee! If you’re anything like me, you might even plan your play outings based on the location of nearby coffee shops. Well, friend. I got you.

If you’re heading to Apex’s Pleasant Park, you should grab coffee from Wake Oasis Coffee, just a few miles away on Olive Chapel Road. Not only do they serve yummy beverages, but this location has a drive-thru. Win win! Grab a latte and continue onto the playground!

A playful castle-themed play structure with a spiral slide and various climbing elements at a sunny playground. The design includes sea creature motifs and a faux rock climbing wall, set against a vibrant blue safety surface, encouraging imaginative play in an outdoor setting with a bright blue sky

Other Thoughts on Pleasant Park

I think this park and playground are an amazing asset to the community.

I like that there are multiple climbing structures; this seems to be suitable for a variety of ages. They’ve also made a point to make this an inclusive park; one of the structures can be accessed via a ramp level with the ground, which is a really nice touch. There are also inclusive swings that can safely hold larger children.

A peaceful playground scene featuring an accessible swing set with a green standard swing and a blue ADA swing, casting long shadows on the bright blue safety surface. The sun's rays add a warm touch to the tranquil outdoor space, surrounded by a fence and bare trees, inviting inclusive play on a sunny day.

In my initial visit, I couldn’t see anything that stuck out to me as a glaring negative. It seems like this park has been really well thought out. One thing I didn’t love was the sloping ground around the main playground structures. While this may just have been built this way to mimic the existing land, there were a few problems I saw with it. (This might just be personal preference). First, my toddler tripped a few times going down the steeper parts of the surface. This wouldn’t be a problem for older kids, I’m sure.

Second, this design means that rainwater pools at the bottom of the bowl/basin. Again, this probably wouldn’t be a problem for non-toddlers, but Malcolm kept sitting and scooting along this ground like it was a slide and in minutes his entire bum was soaking wet from the recent rain. These are small negatives, I know, but still, I hadn’t brought him a change of pants on this surprisingly chilly North Carolina day! I guess that’s on me, though!

The sloping ground does have the cool benefit of becoming another place to play, however, like in the case of this semi-horizontal climbing wall.

A child interacts with colorful climbing holds on a vibrant artificial rock-climbing mound at a playground, illustrating an engaging and tactile experience. The rubber safety surfacing transitions from blue to red, under the watchful eye of an adult, against a backdrop of tall leafless trees and a clear blue sky.

The only other “negative” to this park might be the lack of shade. In the heat of summer, I could see it being less than pleasant (pun intended) to stand in the baking sun. Of course, I guess that’s what the splash pad is for!

Want to see more of Pleasant Park? Check out my reel on Instagram!