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Swope Park

The largest park in Kansas City is filled with opportunities for activity and exploration. Enjoy the zoo, a Broadway show, hiking and a range of other activities.

Swope Park is the largest park in Kansas City, stretching over 1,800 acres (680 hectares). Named after local philanthropist Thomas Swope, the park was gifted to Kansas City in 1896. It has since become one of the city’s biggest attractions, with over 2 million visitors passing through its gates every year.

Two of the major attractions in the park are the Kansas City Zoo and the Starlight Theatre. Visit the zoo for one of the best African enclosures in America. A free alternative to the zoo is the Lakeside Nature Center, which operates as a rehabilitation facility for local animals. If you find yourself in Kansas on a clear night, head down to a show at the Starlight Theatre, one of the last self-producing open-air cinemas in the country.

If you’re looking for a bit of exercise, Swope Park has plenty to offer. The park has a 2-mile (3.2-kilometer) exercise trail as well as more than 10 miles (16 kilometers) of bike trails. Wander through the park and catch a local game of baseball or soccer, or go to the Swope Memorial Golf Course for a quick round. The park also has a course for Frisbee Golf, a challenging yet fun outdoor game.

The park is also a great place for simply taking a relaxing stroll outside the busy city center. Make your way to the Swope Memorial and Fountain or Kansas City Community Gardens. The Beanstalk Children’s garden is a good option if you’re traveling with young kids. It has a small admission fee, but tours are free and usually available.

Swope Park is located about a 20-minute drive south of Kansas City. Entry to the park is free, however, some activities require admission fees. Shows at the Starlight Theatre should be booked in advance.


Guide to Exploring around Swope Park


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Lodging Near Swope Park

See all 382 Properties near Swope Park
Days Inn & Suites by Wyndham Kansas City South $63
Reviewed on Jun 24, 2019
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Days Inn & Suites by Wyndham Kansas City South

Days Inn & Suites by Wyndham Kansas City South

8601 Hillcrest Rd, Kansas City, MO
     
    3.2 of 5
    2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

    place was clean, check-in was quick, breakfast was good, my wife noted a smell in the non-smoking room and asked if i had gotten a smoking room but maybe it was just that usual hotel smell?

    Kansas City Metro Home
    Kansas City Metro Home

    Kansas City Metro Home

    Kansas City, Missouri
       
      0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Situated in Kansas City, this vacation home is within 3 mi (5 km) of Starlight Theatre, Kansas City Zoo, and University of Missouri-Kansas City. Van Noy Mansion and Swope Park are also within 2 mi (3 km).

      Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Stes Kansas City Sports Complex $80
      Reviewed on Jun 10, 2019
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      Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Stes Kansas City Sports Complex

      Holiday Inn Express Hotel & Stes Kansas City Sports Complex

      8551 E Blue Pkwy, Kansas City, MO
         
        4.1 of 5
        2.5 out of 5.0 Stars

        Very nice hotel, good selection at breakfast, great for families.

        Serene and Peaceful Sanctuary, Just 10 min to Downtown
        Reviewed on Jan 16, 2019
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        Serene and Peaceful Sanctuary, Just 10 min to Downtown

        Serene and Peaceful Sanctuary, Just 10 min to Downtown

        Kansas City, Missouri
           
          4.8 of 5
          0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          We stayed here this last weekend. We were in town for a family wedding. Location was great- just 5 min from my in laws. Mike the owner was very responsive to questions and was fantastic about updating us with any info. Will definitely stay again the next time we are in town visiting family. Our kiddos ...

          Adam's Mark Hotel & Conference Center at the Sports Stadium Complex $79
          Reviewed on Jun 21, 2019
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          Adam's Mark Hotel & Conference Center at the Sports Stadium Complex

          Adam's Mark Hotel & Conference Center at the Sports Stadium Complex

          9103 E 39th Street, Kansas City, MO
             
            3.1 of 5
            3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

            Outdoor pool area was nice but didn't see towels anywhere. Three of us in a room but only two sets of towels, didn't want to mess with asking for more. Bedding was nice, TV was nice. Great location and price was good only surprise was $5.81 resort fee, didn't see that coming. Kids would have done ...

            Modern Bohemian In Waldo, Eclectic & Pet Friendly
            Modern Bohemian In Waldo, Eclectic & Pet Friendly

            Modern Bohemian In Waldo, Eclectic & Pet Friendly

            Kansas City, Missouri
               
              0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

              Situated in Kansas City, this vacation home is within 3 mi (5 km) of Swope Park, University of Missouri-Kansas City, and Starlight Theatre. National Museum of Toys and Miniatures and Van Noy Mansion are also within 3 mi (5 km).

              Newly Renovated 3 Bedroom/ 2 Bathroom Home!
              Reviewed on Oct 8, 2018
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              Newly Renovated 3 Bedroom/ 2 Bathroom Home!

              Newly Renovated 3 Bedroom/ 2 Bathroom Home!

              Kansas City, Missouri
                 
                4.7 of 5
                0.0 out of 5.0 Stars

                We brought 3 couples for the KC vs Jaguars NFL game. We had a great time! The house was clean and had nice size bedrooms. Onsite grill was a nice amenity—so was the pinball, pool table and foosball! Great area but we did not explore much. Overall a great place!!

                The Fontaine $135
                Reviewed on Jun 24, 2019
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                The Fontaine

                The Fontaine

                901 W. 48th Place, Kansas City, MO
                   
                  4.5 of 5
                  4.5 out of 5.0 Stars

                  We stayed 3 nights and didn't get our room cleaned until the last night after requesting multiple times. Rooms are small