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9 Must-visit Regional Parks in Fresno

9 Must-visit Regional Parks in Fresno (2023)

Fresno is a beautifully growing city with rapid concrete developments, but that does not mean that you cannot enjoy the peace of nature here. Fresno can be considered as California’s one of the largest cities by size, and with this comes the much-needed relief of parks, gardens, and natural landscapes where you can spend your time and enjoy the tranquillity.

The city of Fresno is home to multiple regional parks, some of which are the best amongst their kinds. Not just the tree and grassland-loaded parks but here in the city you can find some unique spots like the underground Park and the Blossom trails & Park as well. Here are our 9 picks for Must-visit Regional Parks in Fresno. Have a look:

9 Must-visit Regional Parks in Fresno

1. Woodward Regional Park

The Woodward Regional Park is the largest of the three public parks and one of the most popular spots to visit in Fresno. The Park adjoins the San Joaquin River that provides it with cool breezes during early morning and evening hours. There are three large ponds, a vast lake, gardens, miles of trails, well-manicured grass beds, frisbee golf, playgrounds, picnic grounds, outdoor amphitheater, BMX track, and in short, everything for entertainment and recreation.

The 300 acres spread of Woodward is spread with immense natural beauty and also provides excellent opportunities to the bird watchers of Fresno. Not just this, but the regional Park is also home to several annual events, including the Woodward Shakespeare Festival, CIF, and CCCAA Cross Country State Championships. Entry to the Park is paid; however, the experience and tranquillity one can grab here justify every penny.

2. Forestier Underground Park

The Forestier Underground Park is one unique treasure in Fresno, where everything is extensively laid out below the surface. It is basically a series of subterranean structures, which are surreal and unconventional examples of vernacular architecture. There are three different levels at the Park, where 1st is 10 feet deep, 2nd is 20 feet deep, and the 3rd is 23 feet deep. It has a total of 65 rooms along with pathways, skylights, courtyards, catch basins, and several plants and trees that owe their existence for more than 100 years now.

This underground Park in Fresno is an awe-inspiring work of Baldassare Forestier, and the city is forever grateful to him for this wonder. Tours here are all worth the efforts, and one can learn a lot of history, aspiration, creation, and several conditions of nature. Whenever you are here, consider the option for a guided tour, and you will undoubtedly learn some beautiful and fascinating things at the end. The Forestier Underground Park is truly the best place to visit in Fresno, and when here in the city, make sure you do not miss it.

3. Shinzen Japanese Garden

Shinzen Japanese Garden is one of those places in Fresno that can mesmerize and hypnotize you to the core. It is a local Japanese-American Garden which is also known as the friendship garden and was built to honor Fresno’s Sister City, Kochi in Japan. The beautiful setting of this place constitutes of varied plant material, rocks, stones, a teahouse, a koi pond, a lake, few waterfalls, streams, well-manicured grass beds, Bonsai garden, sculptures, and well-maintained pathways.

The Shinzen Japanese Garden is home to seven authentic Japanese-style bridges open for public usage. If you happen to be in Fresno during spring, do visit here and hold the mesmerizing view of the pink cherry blossoms and colorful koi for a lifetime. There are particularly marked spots for 4 different seasons in the garden, and the vibe at every spot is unique from another. When here, you can also explore the permanent display of the world-class Clark Bonsai Collection, exhibiting some of the finest American Bonsais.

4. Oso de Oro Lake Park

Oso de Oro Lake Park in Fresno is a park for visitors of all kinds of physical abilities and disabilities. The Park has several play areas, picnic areas, swings, sitting benches, walking, and cycling trails, along with an abundance of vegetation, plantation, trees, and shaded areas. Oso de Oro is spread over 9.3 acres which, due to the excavated storm water retention basin, is arrayed with 3 different elevations. The entire Park is nestled with uncountable trees, so despite you are here on a bright sunny and summery day, you can still relax and rejuvenate.

The small lake at the Oso de Oro Lake Park in Fresno is home to ducks and geese, which you can often find enjoying both the water and grassland. Also, it attracts several birds, and if you are here during the early morning hours, you might encounter hundreds of them. Since it is a handicap-accessible park, there are wheelchair ramps and suitable play equipment with highbacked chairs dedicatedly for their entertainment.

5. Kearney Park

Kearney Park is a huge 225 acres park surrounding the century-old Kearney Mansion, which is one of the famous places to visit in Fresno. It is spread of rolling grassland with four playgrounds, soccer & softball field, horseshoe pits, 11 picnic reservation areas, picnic shelters, dance slabs, and benches all around. This day-use park is mainly operational from 7 am to 7 pm though there can be a slight change in hours depending upon seasons and dusk & dawn.

Several unproven haunted stories about Kearney Park become more doubtful as the Mansion authorities never allow the specialists to validate the paranormal encounter. Due to the vast spread and less crowd, the authorities believe that people might have felt unusual while being alone. If you are interested in spending some time alone from the hustle and bustle of the crowd, Kearney park is one of the best places to be at.

6. Roeding Regional Park

Roeding Regional Park is one of the prime parks in Fresno, with a spread of 90 acres. The Regional Park is also home to the 39 acres Fresno Chaffee Zoo and the Japanese War Memorial; thus, one can cover multiple tourism spots of Fresno on a trip here. Roeding operates several theme lands, including playland, storyland, and the fairy tale land, and one can transport between these via steam-outline locomotive-powered miniature trains.

The Chaffee Zoo inside the regional park houses about 200 wild animal species, including panthers, lions, bears, rhinos, cheetahs, giraffes, and various other worth watching birds and animals. Roeding also features a vast lake where one can try paddle boating, row boating, and motor boating at a minimal fee. There are several well-maintained picnic areas and sports as well where you can enjoy your time and burn some energy. Roeding Regional Park is a pretty peaceful place to be, and when in Fresno, do spend some evening or early morning hours here.

7. Trolley Creek Park

Trolley Creek Park is an extensive spread of nature and is home to Fresno landmark’s miniatures, play areas, and some great picnic spots. It is accessible for physically abled individuals and is quite similar to Oso de Oro. True to its name, there’s one trolley inside the Park, which though does not operate but is available for kids to play in and around. The idea of this Park was mainly to focus upon Fresno’s history, and today, it has also developed as a recreational spot for both kids and adults.

The Trolley Creek Park is equipped with a water fountain that keeps everyone dehydrated around is looks quite elegant and classic. There are several BBQ pits and a lush, spacious garden for family picnics and activities that comes with free parking and no admission and usage fee.

8. Blossom trails and Park

Blossom trails and Park is a seasonal park that is at its full bloom during the spring season. It is the most scenic place in Fresno and is known for the mild flowery fragrance, relaxed environment, and picturesque settings. Trees here start blooming from the mid of February and last for not more than 3 to 4 weeks. The orchard is full of pink bouquets of apricot blossoms, rosy sprays of peach and nectarine petals, white blazes of apples, plumps, and almonds. A scenic drive through its way or photography opportunities here is simply jaw-dropping.

For entering the Blossom trails, if you are coming from South, exit the California Highway 99 at Kingsburg or if you are coming from North, exit California Highway 99 at Jensen and follow the loop drive. There are several routes that will eventually lead you here, and mainly because it is a seasonal delight, you would find several people heading their way towards.

9. Gardens of the Sun

Gardens of the Sun is relatively a small garden/ park in Fresno; however, if you are interested to learn about plantations and vegetation, it is a great place to be at. It is basically a botanical garden where you can walk around, take your kids for play or simply sit down to soak in some nature’s energy and positivity. UC Master Gardener Volunteers rigorously work to keep this oasis thriving and alive while providing visitors with experiences and information.

Gardens of the Sun is mainly based on themes that constantly change with seasons. This unique area in Fresno is operational only during the 1st and 3rd Saturday of the month, and here one can playfully learn about crops, vegetation, drought via kids-friendly demonstrations and fun learning experience.

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