Tired of being stuck inside? Des Moines’ weather may be unpredictable, but kids always need something to do – whether that’s to get the wiggles out or to engage their brains!
Des Moines has tons of fun and engaging places to play, so we compiled a comprehensive indoor play and activities guide for Des Moines moms!
Whether it’s freezing cold, rainy, or hot we know what it’s like to feel like you’ll go crazy if you don’t leave the house. Get out and let the kids be kids with our guide to indoor activities: play places, playgrounds, interactive activity centers, open gyms, mall play places, and more — all updated for 2021-2022. All you have to do is load up the kids and decide what sounds like fun today.
Hang in there momma, we’re in this together!
Some locations have restricted hours or services and special safety requirements due to COVID-19. Please check the business’s or call before planning a visit.
Urban Air Trampoline & Adventure Park
If you’re looking for the best year-round indoor amusements in the Ankeny area, Urban Air Trampoline and Adventure Park is the perfect place. With new adventures behind every corner, it is the ultimate indoor playground for your entire family. Spend a day of fun and adventure with the family and you’ll see why they’re more than just a trampoline park. Seriously.
There’s so much to do inside Urban Air you might have to come back for a second visit. Young or old, tall or short, athlete or armchair quarterback – their attractions will help you defy gravity.
The variety of attractions is another reason why Urban Air is the perfect place for indoor play and activities. Every kid likes something different and it’s almost impossible to please them all. But at Urban Air, there’s so much for the kids to explore, they’ll have a hard time deciding which attraction is their favorite! Check it out today!
Science Center of Iowa
Imagine, experiment, and play at the Science Center of Iowa! Catch science in action in When Things Get Moving, meet Iowa’s native cold-blooded critters in What On Earth?, or make a splash in Bubble Bay. Live science demonstrations and planetarium programs mean there’s something new to explore each time you visit. Special early childhood classes are offered throughout the month.
Jester Park Nature Center
The Jester Park Nature Center is a gateway to experience Iowa’s natural environment and experience outdoor recreation. Explore indoors and outdoors via interactive exhibits, hiking trails, and fun nature programming. Check out the Recreation & Wellness Building next door for outdoors skills rental equipment, a bouldering wall, archery range, and more!
Complete Guide to Indoor Fun in Des Moines
Indoor Play Areas and Playgrounds
Chuck E. Cheese | Sunday – Thursday 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.; Friday 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.
Get Air Des Moines | Monday, Wednesday, Sunday 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.; Tuesday, Thursday 12 p.m. to 8 p.m.; Friday, Saturday 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Hop-A-Lot Indoors | Monday – Saturday 12 p.m. – 8 p.m.; Sunday noon – 5:30 p.m. (Hours vary due to Merle Hay Mall hours)
Pump it Up | Open jump times vary, see website for details
Rainbow of the Heartland | Open play Monday – Friday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Sky Zone Trampoline Park | Monday closed; Tuesday – Thursday 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.; Friday 12 p.m. – 8 p.m.; Saturday 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.; Sunday 12 p.m. – 6 p.m.
The Playground for Kids | Hours vary, see website for details
Valley Community Center | Monday – Friday 8:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Blank Park Zoo | 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Code Ninjas | Hours Vary
Des Moines Art Center | Monday closed; Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday 11 a.m. – 4 p.m.; Thursday 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.; Saturday & Sunday 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
Des Moines Children’s Museum | Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, Friday 9:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.; Wednesday 9:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m; Saturday: 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Des Moines Botanical Center | Tuesday – Sunday 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Reiman Gardens | October 1 – April 30 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.; May 1 – September 30 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Butterfly Wing 10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
Science Center of Iowa | Thursday – Sunday 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. and 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.
State Historical Museum of Iowa| Tuesday – Friday 9 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
World Food Prize Hall of Laureates| Tuesdays 9 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 12 p.m., 1:30 p.m.; Saturdays: 9 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Mall Play Areas
Jordan Creek Towncenter | Monday – Saturday 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.; Sunday 11 a.m. – 6 p.m.
Merle Hay Mall | Monday – Saturday 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.; Sunday noon – 5:30 p.m.
Southridge Mall | Monday – Saturday 10 a.m. – 9 p.m.; Sunday 12 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Valley West Mall | Monday – Saturday 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.; Sunday 12 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Recreation & Activities
Bowling | Open bowl times vary, call ahead for lane availability.
Climb Iowa | in Grimes and the East Village. Times vary by location.
Skateland| Wednesday — Friday 4 p.m. – 8 p.m.; Saturday 1 p.m. – 8 p.m.; Sunday 1 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Skate South| Wednesday 5:30 p.m. – 8:30 p.m.; Friday 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.; Saturday 1 p.m. – 8 p.m. and 6 p.m. – 10 p.m.; Sunday 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.
Summit Indoor Pool in Johnston | Hours vary