Dennis the Menace Park

Set up a picnic on the tranquil shore of Lake El Estero and let the kids run free in this sandy playground.

Dennis the Menace Park is a fun playground area within the larger El Estero Park complex. On the shore of a picturesque lake, the colorful slides and climbing frames will keep kids busy for hours. Get your photo taken by friends beside the Dennis the Menace statue in the center of the park. It was stolen in 2006 and recovered in 2015.

Watch the kids swirl down the large slide in the main playground, which also has climbing nets and a zip line. Find your way through the elegant labyrinth that is made from hedges. The maze contains a lookout tower in its center with views of the lake and the rest of the playground.

Ascend the 9-foot (3-meter) climbing wall to conquer the world. Play sports on the lawn with your kids and their friends. Among the attractions is the steam engine, which has been in place since 1956.

Bring the younger children to the smaller toddler area, where they can play with other kids their age. It has a boat theme and consists of two charming slides.

The park provides a picturesque and serene setting in central Monterey. Lay down a blanket on the sand or grass and enjoy a picnic with a scenic backdrop of the lake. Stroll along the pleasant paths that run through the El Estero Park complex, which comprises 45 acres (18 hectares) of pretty grounds.

Learn the interesting history of the Dennis the Menace Park, which was partially funded by Hank Ketchum, the creator of its namesake comic strip. After opening in 1956, the park has undergone several renovations to reach its current modern state.

The playground, which is free to enter, opens daily from morning until sunset. It is closed on Tuesdays in winter.

Dennis the Menace Park is on the southern shore of the bend in Lake El Estero. Take a bus across the Pearl Street bridge to the peninsula on which the park lies. Visit nearby landmarks, such as the San Carlos Cemetery, the Cathedral of San Carlos Borromeo and the Monterey County Youth Museum.


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