Childrens Adventure Garden at Dallas Arboretum

Childrens Adventure Garden at Dallas Arboretum

November 20, 2023

The Rory Meyers Children’s Adventure Garden at Dallas Arboretum opened 10 years ago, but somehow I’d never visited until last month. Why? I guess considering my kids had outgrown children’s gardens by the time it opened, and so it wasn’t on my radar despite many visits over the years to the Arboretum. Also, the archway to the Adventure Garden is waaaaay off to the side of the Arboretum, and unless you park over there, it’s easy to miss. That’s a mistake, considering it’s a fun place for parents and kids to explore (you can moreover visit sans kids, as I did). Admission requires a separately purchased ticket, which you can buy at the main archway to the Arboretum or at the gate into the Adventure Garden.


The Adventure Garden is huge, spread wideness 8 acres that slope lanugo to White Rock Lake. Toward the part-way of the garden you find a gigantic, manmade tree trunk, with stairs leading up to a netted zone for playing in the canopy.

For universal access, a skywalk underpass moreover leads to the canopy.

Kids were having a wham playing on the net virtually the tree trunk.

Bird’s nest classroom

Nearby, a giant bird’s nest contains benches and two large eggs for an outdoor classroom.

A bird’s-eye view

Bronze unprepossessing sculptures are placed naturalistically throughout the garden, making for fun discoveries.

Real animals live here too.

The Texas Skywalk

A canopy-level bridge, the Texas Skywalk, runs through the middle section of the garden…

…accessing not only the tree-net play space but a rooftop terrace…

…and a tower with an elevator lanugo to the energy exhibits.

The elevator/stair tower

Energy exhibits

Near the lake, several exhibits demonstrate ways of creating or harnessing energy.

I learned that a solar sublet in San Antonio is one of the largest solar-energy producers in the U.S.

Where would you build a hydropower plant?, flipside sign asks.

The interactive exhibits show kids science in action.

Water blasters offer a little target-shooting fun too.

Solar energy exhibit

Living Cycles

In flipside section of the garden, kids learn well-nigh living cycles, like the seasons and plant and unprepossessing life cycles.

What plants offer supplies for wildlife? Berrying ones like juniper and beautyberry, for a start.

Compost bins and an old rotting log (faux) demonstrate how nature recycles.

Earth Cycles

Earth cycles — including erosion, the water cycle, weather, and planetary movements — are brought to life in flipside section of the garden. Kids can explore a cave…

…and learn how rainwater moves through waterways.

An analemmatic sundial uses a human shadow to show the time of day.

Edible garden

In the upper part of the garden, an edible garden teaches children where their supplies comes from…

…and what else crops may be used for.

Hedge maze

A secret garden with a hedge maze was a popular spot, with excited kids darting through it.

Lots of places to hibernate in here

And discoveries to make, like this spinning sphere floating on a vessel of water.


This is a garden too, of course, with flowering plants throughout, like morning glory…


…muhly grass…

…and salvia and yucca.

Not to mention gigantic flowerpot sculptures

The Adventure Garden must be a popular place for school groups and kids from tots to middle school-aged. Dallas parents are lucky to have this resource for outdoor play and learning.

For a squint when at Dallas Arboretum during pumpkin season, click here.

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