Created in the 1950s as an alternative for surfers when waves were flat, skateboarding has steadily grown from its early days. So popular that it’s become popular worldwide and a multi-billion dollar industry. Part of the growing popularity of “sidewalk surfing” can be attributed to skate parks, which first appeared in the mid 60s. These skateparks typically featured a few ramps made of concrete. However, to meet the demand, many of the best skate parks have evolved to become bigger and better than ever before.
Black Pearl Skate & Surf Park
Grand Harbour, ky1-1201
Red Bay, Cayman Islands
Encompassing 62,000 square feet of skateable area, Black Pearl Skate & Surf Park is said to be among the world’s largest skateboard parks. Located just minutes from the Cayman Island’s famed Seven Mile Beach, the skate park features both smaller and larger bowls. In addition are a snake run, a street section with ledges and rails and designated areas for beginners, intermediates and advanced skateboarders.
Guangzhou University Town Sports Center
218 East Road
Guangzhou University City
Guangzhou, P.R. China, 510006
Located on Guangzhou University campus in one of China’s most advanced cities, Guangzhou University Town Sports Center is home to the world’s largest skatepark. Built for the 2010 Asian Games, the entire facility reportedly covers 4.3 million square feet and features 12 sports venues. Moreover, it includes the 170,000-square foot Extreme Park, which was added in 2014.
Lake Cunningham Regional Skate Park
2305 S. White Road
San Jose, CA 95148
Situated eight miles east of downtown San Jose, Lake Cunningham Regional Park (LCRSP) is by far the biggest skatepark in California. Covering 68,8000 square feet of skating area, the very popular community park draws an estimated 75,000 visitors annually. It also features the world’s largest cradle, tallest vertical wall and largest full pipe.
North Houston Skate Park
12351 Kuykendahl Road
Houston, TX 77090
The familiar saying “everything is bigger in Texas” is altogether appropriate for the Texas-sized North Houston Skate Park. Featuring 78,000 square feet of skate surface, this competition-scale park is easily the largest skatepark in America and on the largest on the entire North American continent. Located about 15 miles north downtown Houston, it has a 12-foot vertical ramp and prominent bowl shaped like Texas.
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Shaw Millennium Park
1220 Ninth Ave., S.W.
Calgary, AB T2P 2C4
North Houston Skate Park may be North America’s largest skatepark, but Canada’s Shaw Millennium Skate Park isn’t far behind. In fact, this mega park located in the western end of the city of Calgary is said to be North America’s largest skatepark for both skateboarding and inline skating. Also holding the distinction of being Canada’s largest free outdoor skatepark, Shaw Millennium offers 75,000 square feet of skateable area.
SMP Skatepark Shanghai
2100 Songhu Road
Shanghai Yangpu District Songhu Road
+86 21 6590 7290
Up until the skatepark at Guangzhou Town Sports Center opened two years ago, SMP Skatepark laid the claim as the world’s largest skatepark for nearly 10 years. Extending across more than 147,000 square feet of skateable space, including over 48,000 square feet of bowl area and a 170-foot long vertical ramp. In addition, it has a competition area with stadium seating for up to 5,000.
Unit 23 Skatepark
The Old Bond
45-50 Castlegreen St.
With 56,000 square feet spread across three skateboarding areas, Unit 23 is the largest indoor skatepark in the U.K. and one of the largest in the world. Located along the River Clyde and 16 miles northwest of Glasgow, the enormous indoor skatepark is available for skateboarding, inline skating, scooter and BMX.
About The Author
Randy Yagi is an award-winning freelance writer who served as the National Travel Writer for CBS Local from 2012-2019. More than 900 of his stories still appear in syndication across 23 CBS websites, including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and San Francisco.