Kaplan Drive Park

This post originally appeared on southwestraleigh.com, where you can learn more about what a great place South West Raleigh is to live, work, and play.

There is a small neighborhood park nestled between I-440, Kaplan Drive, and a residential area where parking is only available on the street. The tall trees try to muffle the noisy highway sounds, but after all, this is a city park inside the beltline. And if you’re jogging or walking by Kaplan Drive Park at 5208 Kaplan Drive, you can stop by to use the fitness stations.

Kaplan Drive Park has a 1/4 mile paved loop with 10 fitness stations and two benches scattered about.  There is a small stream running through the loop and two bridges to cross, making it fun to explore for turtles or other water creatures.  The paved trail surrounds a heavily wooded forest boasting diverse trees, putting your child’s tree identification kit to good use.

There are two large open fields at this park: one just below the tree line of I-440 and another near Kaplan Drive.  The fields could be perfect for frisbee, a game of tag, or other fun kid activities.  Unfortunately, there aren’t any picnic tables at the park, so bring a large blanket for a picnic in one of the many open, shady spots.

Even though this isn’t a destination park per se, it’s a fun neighborhood park to explore on a walk with the dog or a jog down the street.

Thumbs up: shade, trees for possible leaf identification project, fitness stations

Thumbs down:  slightly slippery trail due to moss, no picnic tables, noisiness of I-440

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