Playgrounds are a common sight in cities around the world. Over the years the design of playground equipment has become more exciting and imaginative. However, in many cases, safety regulations have prevented designers of playground equipment from creating more challenging and exciting environments for children to play in.
Scientific research has proven that playground equipment plays a vital role in the development of a child’s mental and physical abilities. Along with this, it has been shown that encouraging children to take risks further aids their development. Psychologists say that preventing children from encountering and solving the challenges involved in risk-taking, increases the chance of them experiencing anxiety over everyday challenges.
While many playgrounds are carbon copies of each, lacking innovative thought, it’s fortunate to know that there are several playgrounds in existence that push the boundaries of human imagination. We’re going to take a look at some of the most imaginative and exciting playgrounds in the world.
Swarovski Crystal World
Renowned for their top quality crystal products, the Austrian company Swarovski used their virtually unlimited budget to create Swarovski Crystal World in 1995, the theme park has become the most popular tourist destination in Austria. The park also includes one of the most exciting playgrounds to be found anywhere. It includes a 45-foot climbing net, multiple rope swings, a trampoline and slides.
Lake Macquarie Variety Playground
Located in Spears Park Australia which covers almost 2 hectares of land, this playground provides an incredible array of equipment for children of all abilities, including visually impaired children and those in wheelchairs. The exciting playground facilities include a 9-metre spiral slide, 12-metre high climbing net, a maze, wheelchair accessible play boat, music play elements and plenty more. It’s no wonder the site won the award of ‘best play area in Australia’
Harry Thomas Sr. Playground
This Washington DC playground combines mathematics with a playful design. The Fibonacci sequence is incorporated into the spiral design that is a recurring theme throughout the playground. The Fibonacci sequence is a mathematical calculation that dictates that the next number in the sequence is the sum of the previous two. This numeric sequence is found in many naturally occurring organic shapes, from the spiral of a seashell to the pattern on most flowers. The park also has facilities for disabled children.
Woodlands Discovery Playground
The designers of this playground in Memphis intended to create the ultimate 21st-century play experience. To achieve this they consulted with the children who will ultimately end up using the playground. They found that children wanted a variety of different playgrounds linked together, each playground providing new and exciting challenges. In this way, children get to go on a voyage of discovery as they move between play areas.
Bounce Below is one of many exciting and beautiful play activities to be found at Zip Line in Northern Wales. The underground wonderland has been constructed in a Victorian coal mine and features giant trampolines and bounce nets connected by walkways. The brightly lit play equipment is suspended above underground caves, the deepest of which is 180 metres.
City Museum St. Louis
A ten story building which was once used as a shoe factory has become the sight for the St. Louis City Museum. This could well be the largest playground ever created with some unusual and exciting features like a slide that descends through all ten stories of the building, ending in the basement. There are numerous climbing installations for people of all ages and a 30 ft. tall Ferris wheel on the roof of the building.
The Green Heart at Shaw Park
The benefits of outdoor play and exercise need not be limited to only children. Shaw Park in Hull has built an outdoor gym area where the whole family can enjoy the health benefits of exercising in the fresh open air.