The 100 Largest City Parks in the US (Update for 2022)

Chicago skyline and city park
Source: iStock

The United States park system is one of the best and most extensive in the world. With thousands of city parks that bring nature into the heart of US cities to National Parks that preserve the wilderness and adventure of the natural world, the raw beauty of the US is undeniable! 

So, if you are looking for a gorgeous open space to host your next boating, hiking, or riverside picnic day, read on for the top 100 urban parks by size.

What City Has the Largest City Park?

Chugach State Park in Anchorage, Alaska, is the largest park by acres, stretching 495,204 acres, but is not completely contained within the metropolitan city limits of Anchorage. It also extends into the south-central Alaskan wilderness, bordering the Chugach Mountain range.

What Is the Second Largest City Park in America?

At 30,580 acres, the Scottsdale McDowell Sonoran Preserve in Arizona is the second largest contiguous urban park in the US. It is a gorgeous desert region, carefully conserved by a non-profit organization.

However, Jacksonville, Florida’s Timucuan Ecological and Historic Preserve is larger, at 46,000 acres, but it is not strictly a city park and extends further into national park territory, instead of being entirely urban. As such, by acreage, it’s the second largest, but not in terms of urban parks.

What’s the Largest City Park in the United States?

While Alaska’s Chugach State Park is the largest city park in the US, there are other expansive parks across the United States, including properties in Florida, Arizona, and California. 

Here's a list of the 100 biggest city parks in the United States, based on the acreage that these urban parks cover.

Rank Park name Acres City
1. Chugach State Park1 495,204 Anchorage, Ala.
2. Timucuan Ecological and Historic Preserve2 46,000 Jacksonville, Fla.
3. McDowell Sonoran Preserve 30,580 Scottsdale, Ariz.
3. Don Edwards San Francisco Bay National Wildlife Refuge2,3 30,000 San Jose, Calif.
5. Franklin Mountains State Park1 26,627 El Paso, Tex.
6. Gateway National Recreation Area2,3 26,607 New York, N.Y.
7. Bayou Sauvage National Wildlife Refuge2 25,270 New Orleans, La.
8. South Mountain Preserve 16,283 Phoenix, Ariz.
9. Carvins Cove Natural Reserve 12,700 Roanoke, Va.
10. Eufaula National Wildlife Refuge2,3 11,184 Eufaula, Ala.
11. Cullen Park 10,500 Houston, Tex.
12. Trinity River Park 10,000 Dallas, Tex.
13. George Bush Park1 7,800 Houston, Tex.
14. Newport News Park3 7,711 Newport News, Va.
15. North Mountain Preserve 7,500 Phoenix, Ariz.
16. Mission Trails Preserve 7,220 San Diego, Calif.
17. Jefferson Memorial Forest 6,600 Louisville, Ky.
18. Pumpkin Hill Creek Preserve1 5,600 Jacksonville, Fla.
19. William B. Umstead State Park1 5,599 Raleigh, N.C.
20. Forest Park 5,172 Portland, Ore.
21. Longview Lake Park1 4,852 Kansas City, Mo.
22. Eagle Creek Park 4,766 Indianapolis, Ind.
23. Far North Bicentennial Park 4,500 Anchorage, Ala.
24. Shelby Farms Park1 4,500 Memphis, Tenn.
25. Calero County Park1 4,471 San Jose, Calif.
26. Griffith Park 4,310 Los Angeles, Calif.
27. Mission Bay Park 4,235 San Diego, Calif.
28. Fairmount Park - Wissahickon Valley 4,167 Philadelphia, Pa.
29. Los Penasquitos Canyon 4,000 San Diego, Calif.
30. Walter Long Park 3,695 Austin, Tex.
31. Bidwell Park 3,670 Chico, Calif.
32. Mountain Creek Lake Park 3,643 Dallas, Tex.
33. Fort Worth Nature Center/Wildlife Refuge 3,621 Fort Worth, Tex.
34. False Cape State Park and Natural Area Preserve1 3,573 Virginia Beach, Va.
35. Bonita Lakes Park 3,462 Meridian, Miss.
36. North Landing River State Natural Area Preserve1 3,441 Virginia Beach, Va.
37. Mill Stream Run Reservation1,3 3,181 Strongsville, Ohio
38. Percy Warner Park 3,135 Nashville, Tenn.
39. Mohawk Park and Golf Course 3,100 Tulsa, Okla.
40. Brecksville Reservation1,3 3,026 Brecksville, Ohio
41. Cave Creek Regional Park1 2,922 Phoenix, Ariz.
42. First Landing State Park1 2,888 Virginia Beach, Va.
43. Greenbelt Park 2,800 New York, N.Y.
44. Pelham Bay Park 2,765 New York, N.Y.
45. Cheyenne Mountain State Park1 2,701 Colorado Springs, Colo.
46. Otter Creek Park 2,600 Louisville, Ky.
47. Little Talbot Island State Park1 2,500 Jacksonville, Fla.
48. Big Talbot Island State Park1 2,500 Jacksonville, Fla.
49. Black Mountain Park 2,352 San Diego, Calif.
50. Steele Creek Park 2,224 Bristol, Tenn.
51. Bedford Reservation1,3 2,200 Bedford, Ohio
52. Bear Creek Pioneers Park1 2,168 Houston, Tex.
53. North Chagrin Reservation1,3 2,100 Willoughby Hills, Ohio
54. Tilden Park 2,079 Berkeley, Calif.
55. Floyd Lamb State Park1 2,040 Las Vegas, Nev.
56. Sepulveda Basin Recreation Area 2,031 Los Angeles, Calif.
57. Galveston Island State Park1 2,013 Galveston, Tex.
58. Smith and Bybee Wetlands Natural Area1 1,973 Portland, Ore.
59. White Rock Lake Park 1,952 Dallas, Tex.
60. Barton Creek Greenway 1,937 Austin, Tex.
61. Swope Park 1,805 Kansas City, Mo.
62. Tijuana River Valley Regional Park1 1,800 San Diego, Calif.
63. Rock Creek Park2,3 1,754 Washington, D.C.
64. Torrey Pines State Reserve1 1,750 San Diego, Calif.
65. Fort Harrison State Park1 1,744 Lawrence, Ind.
66. Burns Park 1,705 North Little Rock, Ark.
67. Beaman Park 1,678 Nashville, Tenn.
68. Claremont Hills Wilderness Park 1,620 Claremont, Calif.
69. Pennypack Park 1,618 Philadelphia, Pa.
70. Lake Leatherwood Park 1,610 Eureka Springs, Ark.
71. North Cheyenne Canyon Park 1,600 Colorado Springs, Colo.
72. Kincaid Park 1,517 Anchorage, Alaska
73. Adobe Dam Recreation Area1 1,514 Phoenix, Ariz.
74. Memorial Park 1,500 Houston, Tex.
75. The Presidio2 1,491 San Francisco, Calif.
76. Mt. Airy Forest 1,471 Cincinnati, Ohio
77. Hansen Dam Recreation Center 1,461 Los Angeles, Calif.
78. Latta Plantation Nature Preserve1 1,460 Huntersville, N.C.
79. Garden of the Gods Park 1,367 Colorado Springs, Colo.
80 Forest Park 1,326 St. Louis, Mo.
81. City Park 1,300 New Orleans, La
82. Flushing Meadows/Corona Park 1,255 New York, N.Y.
83. Martin Luther King, Jr. Shoreline Park1 1,220 Oakland, Calif.
84. Koko Head Regional Park1 1,218 Honolulu, Hawaii
85. Gwynn Falls/Leakin Park 1,216 Baltimore, Md.
86. Anacostia Park2 1,210 Washington, D.C.
87. Lincoln Park 1,208 Chicago, Ill.
88. Balboa Park 1,200 San Diego, Calif.
89. River Rouge Park 1,184 Detroit, Mich.
90. McClay Gardens State Park1 1,176 Tallahassee, Fla.
91. Van Cortlandt Park 1,146 New York, N.Y.
92. Red Mountain Park 1,146 Mesa, Ariz.
93. Emma Long Park 1,142 Austin, Tex.
94. T.O. Fuller State Park1 1,138 Memphis, Tenn.
95. McDowell Nature Preserve 1,116 Charlotte, N.C.
96. Golden Gate Park 1,013 San Francisco, Calif.
97. Olmos Basin Park 1,010 San Antonio, Tex.
98. Stinchcomb Wildlife Refuge 1,000 Oklahoma City, Okla.
99. Richmond Parkway 984 New York, N.Y.
100. William Blair Jr. Park (formerly Rochester Park) 983 Dallas, Tex.
NOTE: Municipally owned park unless otherwise noted.
1. State, county, or regional park.
2. National Park or National Wildlife Refuge.
3. Additional parkland extends outside of the city.
Source: Center for City Park Excellence, Trust for Public Land.

 

 

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