Large golf courses and tennis courts, botanic gardens and miles-long trails may not be the first thing that comes to mind when we mention Las Vegas. But the Sin City is not all neon lights, casinos, and party life, it's a lot more than that. There are plenty of oases in the desert to stretch your legs and unwind after a long day, go fishing or hiking, or take your loved ones for a family outing.
Whether you're looking to escape the busy streets and crowded tourist attractions or want to show off your sports talents, Las Vegas has a ton of spaces that completely change the scenery of the Vegas glitz. In fact, there are 361 parks in Las Vegas, NV, so you can visit a different one each day of the year.
And if you're looking for a place in Las Vegas to store a backpack after hiking or somewhere to drop off your picnic basket, bounce has convenient luggage storage across the city, making it easy to continue exploring Las Vegas parks weightless.
Clark County Wetlands Park & Nature Center
When you need a little break from the stressful city life, head down to Clark County Wetlands Park, where you can give your mind and eyes a rest. Located between Las Vegas and Lake Mead, a mile east of Tropicana Avenue, this oasis in the Mojave Desert is worth taking a trip any time of the day.
Bird lovers get the chance to watch and observe more than 200 species of wetland and desert birds, including wood ducks, bald eagles, red-shouldered hawks, blue herons, and snowy egrets, as well as over 70 species of mammals and reptiles. The park also features 13 miles of hiking trails and a 210-acre Nature Preserve featuring an amphitheater, educational programs, art and children programs, and a lot more.
With 2,900 acres, the Clark Wetlands Park is the largest park in Las Vegas, just a short ride from the Las Vegas Strip. This iconic open space is host to numerous activities and events. Expect to see people from all walks of life, friends, couples, families, locals, and tourists alike. Visitors come to the Clark County Wetlands Park for many reasons, be it for the shaded picnic areas, the walking trails, the sports fields, swimming classes or the playgrounds, so no matter your interest, you'll find it here.
The Wetlands Park and Nature Center are part of the Clark County Parks and Recreation, home to 16 recreation and community centers, 14 pool facilities with water parks and all-year-round indoor pools, 10 skate parks, 7 dog parks, and more than 100 public parks. Open daily, from dawn till dusk, the Clark County Wetlands Park is free for the public year-round.
If you're looking for a real oasis in the desert, where you can spend an entire day doing anything under the sun, this park is just the place. Located just minutes from Harry Reid International Airport, Sunset Park is the perfect getaway from the busy city streets and has been a great relaxation spot since 1967. The open space has recently undergone phased park expansions which developed 214 of the 323 total acres, making Sunset the largest and the most distinguished park in the County. People here gather for picnics and family outings, festivals, and all sorts of events, including the annual Age of Chivalry Renaissance Festival.
Sunset Park features a large number of ball fields, including tennis courts, basketball and volleyball courts, baseball fields, and a disc golf course. It's easy to find shaded picnic areas with barbecues, dog parks, and playgrounds in the vast open space. If you love fishing, you'll enjoy sitting by the 1.4 acred Sunset Park Pond, which is open year-round and stocked with rainbow trout and catfish multiple times a month. Keep in mind that fishing at the Sunset Park pond is only allowed with a fishing license which you can obtain online at the Nevada Department of Wildlife for $19.
Clark County has recently added walking trails in Sunset Park, making it convenient for hikers who want to reach their daily step count, all the while enjoying nature's beauty. What sets this park apart from the rest are the natural dunes that stand out so clearly in the Las Vegas Valley.
When hunger strikes, the park's convenient location makes it easy to walk down to a line of restaurants and cafes nearby, including Lobster Me, Ping Pong Thai restaurant, Egg Works, and more.
Valley of Fire State Park
Located 55 miles northeast of Las Vegas, the Valley of Fire State Park is the perfect zen spot away from the hustle on the Strip. The geological park opened in 1934, becoming the first State park in Nevada. But the history of the park dates further back, with ancient trees, art and rock formations that are thousands to millions of years old.
The Valley of Fire State Park is not your typical green space. It's a 40,000-acre space characterized by amazing colored rock formations that were 150 million years in the making. The rocks' red color resembles fire, hence the name, the Valley of Fire State Park.
People come here for various reasons, whether to take Instagram-worthy photos, camp, hike, explore the wildlife or witness the ancient rocks and art, including the 3,000-year-old Native American petroglyphs. Though it looks like it's in the middle of nowhere, the park is well preserved, and there is a visitor center where you can get more information on the hikes and the history of the park. Those who want to go camping will be happy to know that there are 72 campsite units throughout the park, all equipped with shaded picnic tables, toilets, water, and grills.
At the far east side of the Valley, you'll find the Lost City Museum, home to artifacts of Ancestral Puebloans, the first permanent settlers in Nevada from 300-1100 AD. Further up Moapa Valley Boulevard, there are a few restaurants to stop by and grab a bite. This geological park is open daily, from sunrise to sunset, 365 days of the year.
Located three miles west of downtown Vegas, just a few minutes from the Strip, the Springs Preserve is the perfect family getaway that lets you experience Mother Nature to the fullest. Known as the birthplace of Las Vegas today, the Preserve is one of the richest cultural and biological resources in Southern Nevada.
The award-winning 180-acred green space features three miles of long trails, a butterfly habitat, botanic gardens, weddings, concerts, and events spaces, biking trails, and various interactive exhibits and museums, one of which is the Origen Museum, a museum of the history and art of Southern Nevada.
When you need to refuel your energy, there are food stalls nearby and a cafe that serves burgers, snacks, and coffee, but you can always bring outside food and non-alcoholic beverage with you. Kids and kids at heart will love the train that takes you around the premises.
Floyd Lamb Park at Tule Springs
The 2,040-acre Floyd Lamb Park right in the city center, is a great diversion from the glamorous show business of the Las Vegas scene. Surrounded by trees, ponds, historical monuments, and an abundance of wildlife, including geese, ducks, and peacocks roaming freely, this space is the perfect respite from the desert, a place to go picnicking, fishing, or hiking. Yes, you can fish at any of the stocked ponds, but only if you have a license.
To make it even more fun, the park features an equestrian center, so you can go horseback riding or take your kids to riding lessons, but make sure to make an appointment first. At the park, you'll see a few historical buildings, one of them being the historic Tule Springs Ranch, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
There are a few restaurants nearby, such as the Lodge Grand Teton and Taco Bell, but you can always come with lunch in your hand and make a picnic.
Death Valley National Park
Death Valley National Park is located 126 miles northwest of Las Vegas, or about a 2-hour car drive, making it an easy day retreat for families with kids, couples, or friends. With an area of 3,000 square miles, Death Valley represents the largest national park in the lower 48 states. But it's also the hottest area in North America, with average summer temperatures reaching 100F and above.
However, despite the searing hot temperatures and dry air, Death Valley National Park is always crowded with people who come to witness the astounding views and geological formations that were billions of years in the making.
Although it's hard to cover the entire area in just a day, you can make stops at the most popular attractions. The most iconic landmark of Death Valley National Park is the Badwater Basin, which is 282 feet below sea level, making it the lowest point in North America. Another highlight of the valley is the Devil's Golf Course, a geological phenomenon with a ragged landscape that's the complete opposite of a golf course. Going up at 5,700 feet above sea level is Dante's View, a viewpoint with panoramic landscapes, and as you go up you'll start seeing an abundance of wildlife, including birds, reptiles, mammals, and plants, some of which are unique to Death Valley.
There are a few restaurants within the park; one is near Zabriskie Point, and you'll find a few more places to eat and a hotel on the northwest side close to Grotto Canyon, near Stovepipe Wells Ranger Station (10ft elevation)). Death Valley is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Davis Park is a beautiful neighborhood park in Spring Valley, tucked away from the busy streets and just a short walk from downtown Las Vegas. What sets this park from the rest of the parks in Las Vegas is its size. Davis Park is possibly the smallest park in Las Vegas but features a walking trail that stretches 1/3 of a mile, a playground, a disc golf course, lots of trees, picnic tables, and a gazebo in the center.
The park is dog friendly too, so you don't have to leave your furry friend behind. Being in the city center, Davis Park is surrounded by cafes and restaurants, so you don't have to venture further off to find a place to eat.
Take in the tranquility of Mother Nature at the best parks in Las Vegas
Despite being a part of the Mojave Desert, Las Vegas, NV, has an abundance of large green spaces that offer a retreat from the Vegas glitz and glam. Las Vegas parks and nature reserves have everything you need to spend a quality day out with friends and family. Whether you want to go hiking, rock climbing, fishing, or just chill by a lake, parks in Las Vegas have it all. Most are conveniently located and easy to get to, which also means you don't have to wander around looking for food, as you'll find plenty of eateries nearby.
Curious to learn more about Las Vegas and your next adventure? Read our guides on the best hikes in Las Vegas and beaches near Las Vegas to boost your itinerary. From viewing migratory birds to marveling at spectacular rock formations, Las Vegas has much to offer the outdoor enthusiast.