Why pay big bucks for one day of fun at the closest water park you can drive to when you can have just as much fun in your own backyard all summer long? Skip the car ride and the long lines and build a water park in the privacy of your own yard. Then put up your feet, relax, and think about your own watery dream vacation you'd like to take someday.


Sprinklers have come a long way since we were children. Gone are the two metal arms that spin in circles. Instead, you can purchase sprinklers shaped like a dolphin or an octopus. Hook one up to your hose and instantly create hours of fun for children of all ages.


If you have a pool, than you already have a pretty cool summer hang-out for your family. Throw in some pool floats and toys to keep them even more engaged. If you don't have a pool, there are options out there that are inexpensive and durable.

Soaker Slides

Remember the Slip 'N Slide? Today, our kids have even cooler versions to choose from that include waterfalls and pools of water at the end. Older kids will have a blast racing down a couple of these.

Water Balloons

Water balloons are a classic for outdoor fun in the summertime. Add a new twist this year by creating games that including water balloons, such as a water balloon race with no hands allowed. One player must pass the balloon to her teammate who then must race it back to the finish line without popping it.

Water Slides

Even if you don't have a pool, you can have a water slide. There are tons to choose from for younger kids and older kids, with prices ranging from $200 to $700. They are inflatable and come in a variety of sizes and designs.

Inflatable Water Parks

These are the epitome of backyard water fun. You can buy an inflatable water park complete with slides, wading pools, sprayers, climbing walls, and more. The price tags are a bit hefty ($200 to $2800), but there are some that can be used without water for year-round fun.

It may seem like a big undertaking to set up a water park in your own backyard, but your kids will be entertained all summer long and stay active at the same time. Just remember safety first. Ensure all children can swim and don't allow wobbly toddlers on toys that are too big for them. It is best to create two different areas for younger kids and older kids to each have a safe space to play. Toddlers and rambunctious 10-year-olds don't mix well at the water park! And don't forget, it is an absolute must to follow the weight and height requirements for all water toys to avoid injury. Many of these slides and parks are not suitable for teenagers or adults, and can result in neck injury. Be sure to keep all water games away from rocks or hazardous areas.