23 Best Attractions & Things to Do in Texas with Kids
If you are looking for fun things to do in Texas with kids, you won’t have to search very hard.
The beautiful state contains countless experiences that will prove fun for the whole family.
Nature lovers will adore the Natural Bridge Caverns and Big Thicket Nature Preserve, while adrenaline junkies can have a blast at Six Flags Fiesta and Wonderland Amusement Park.
If you’re still not interested, how about the Dixie Dude Ranch or the Texas Air and Space Museum.
Exploring Texas with kids is a great opportunity, no matter what your and your children’s interests are.
23 Top-Rated Things to Do in Texas with Kids
1. Children’s Museum – Houston
The Children’s Museum in Houston is one of the most fun things to do in Texas with kids. Tons of interactive exhibits and hands-on activities make this destination a great place to learn and have fun.
Some favorite areas at the Children’s Museum include FlowWorks, where kids learn about physics through water activities, and Inventor’s Workshop, a great place where children can build their own inventions.
Another popular exhibit, best for children three years old and older, is Cyberchase, based on the kids’ show of the same name. Here, tech-savvy kids can practice their math in an action-packed environment.
Another great thing about the museum is that they offer free family nights every Thursday from 5 pm to 8 pm. Here, kids can visit the exhibits as well as enjoy a bilingual storytime.
Overall, the museum contains exhibits for kids of all ages but is mainly for children about two to nine years old.
2. NASA Space Center – Houston
The official museum and visitor center of the Johnson Space Center, which is now a Smithsonian Affiliate museum, contains real rockets, shuttles, and other space-related exhibits. A walk through this astounding site allows kids to come face to face with all types of items from previous space programs, like Apollo, Gemini, and Mercury.
One of the main attractions at the NASA center is the Destination Moon feature, where you can see the spacecraft from the first and last lunar landings. Or, another favorite is the Space Shuttle Experience, a space simulator that lets guests feel what it is like to ride in a shuttle during lift-off.
With even more great artifacts like moon rocks and the podium where John F. Kennedy gave his famous speech about heading to the stars, the NASA Space Center is one of the best science museums in Texas.
3. Six Flags Fiesta Texas – San Antonio
Opened in 1992, Six Flags Fiesta has become one of the best things to do in Texas with kids. However, the whole family can have a great time at this fantastic amusement park in Texas Hill Country.
Older kids, teens, and adults will love the exciting rides like the BATMAN roller coaster and the Dare Devil Dive Flying Machines. Younger children, on the other hand, can have a blast at Kidzopolis, or the Pirate Ship Play Zone, a pirate ship play area where they can cool off in the water.
The younger ones also tend to love the Looney Tunes Adventure Camp, where they can play on the huge playground and might even get a chance to see Looney Tunes characters, like Bugs Bunny.
4. Natural Bridge Caverns – New Braunfels
One of the best national parks in Texas, Natural Bridge Caverns is a great place for the entire family. The largest cavern in the state, Natural Bridge gets its name from the 60-foot natural limestone bridge at the entrance.
But, when you get here, you’ll notice that the caverns aren’t the only draw to the park. You’ll also find fun attractions inside, like the Twisted Trails Zip Rails and Ropes Course and the AMAZEn’ Ranch Roundup maze.
You may even get to see bats fly out of the cavern’s crevices as they go in search of food.
5. Kemah Boardwalk – Kemah
Outside of Houston, Kemah Boardwalk is one of the best things to do in Texas with kids. A theme park with a carnival-like atmosphere, the boardwalk includes fun activities like a carousel and the Boardwalk Beast, a 40-mile an hour boat ride off the coast.
6. Texas Air and Space Museum – Amarillo
Filled to the brim with flying-related exhibits, the Texas Air and Space Museum is one of Amarillo’s best tourist attractions. Here, kids can simultaneously learn about aviation and air force history while getting close to real-life airplanes.
7. Houston Museum of Natural Science – Houston
A museum bursting with fun things to do, the Houston Museum of Natural Science will definitely be the most thrilling adventure you’ve ever had at a learning center. With exhibits and attractions as far-flung as the Butterfly Center and planetarium to the Giant Screen Theater and the HMNS at Sugar Land, it’s hard not to find something you love.
8. Dinosaur World – Glen Rose
A unique choice, Dinosaur World offers kids the chance to see hundreds of huge dinosaurs in outside exhibits. The park is even dog-friendly and has a gift shop full of dinosaur-themed toys.
There’s also the Fossil Dig, where kids can unearth real fossils like shark and Mosasaur teeth. Or, they can try out the Jurassic Park marathon.
9. River Walk – San Antonio
The River Walk’s colorful sites are the gem of San Antonio and one of the most popular things to do in Texas with kids. With attractions as diverse as Ripley’s Haunted Adventure and the Doseum, the walk has tons of kid’s activities that never get boring.
10. Big Bend National Park – Alpine
A beautiful destination and one of the best things to do in Texas with kids, Big Bend National Park is one of the nation’s most isolated national parks. With gorgeous views of desert canyons surrounded by lush greenery, you and your family can experience the Texas scenery as people would have thousands of years ago.
A favorite adventure to experience the healthy countryside is to head out on some of the park’s hiking trails. One of the best and easiest of those is the Chihuahuan Desert Nature Trail that takes you a half-mile through this gorgeous oasis.
Kids can also become official Junior Rangers. Participating in the Junior Ranger program allows kids to learn about the flora, fauna, and history of Big Bend, and in the end, they get their very own badge.
Meanwhile, teenagers and adults can relax in the hot springs, which Native Americans have used for thousands of years.
11. Texas State Fair – Dallas
As the best fair in the Lone Star State, the Texas State Fair offers visitors all kinds of fun attractions, from family rides and rodeos to a clay shooting contest and a dog stunt show. Those who come to Dallas during the early fall fair will find plenty to do and even more to see.
12. Dixie Dude Ranch – Bandera
One of the most fun things to do in Texas with kids, Dixie Dude Ranch offers tons of exciting adventures so the entire family can experience cowboy culture. From horseback riding and swimming to fishing and campfire sing-a-longs, this dude ranch is perfect for the outdoor family.
13. SeaWorld – San Antonio
Experience exciting and beautiful marine life at this 250-acre park. Here, you can watch gorgeous sea creatures, like dolphins and turtles, as they swim around their enclosures.
14. Grapevine Vintage Railroad – Grapevine
Right outside of Dallas and Fort Worth lies Grapevine, Texas, where you and your family can take exciting train rides in authentic 1920s coaches. These thrilling rides take you through the historic downtown of Grapevine, where you can see the area’s best sites from a unique position.
15. Big Thicket Natural Preserve – Kountze
Sporting peaceful trails and ranger programs, Big Thicket Natural Preserve is one of the greatest places to experience nature in the area surrounding Houston. Kids will enjoy a paddle through the Neches River or a night under the stars at the campground.
16. Frisco Heritage Center – Frisco
Many kids can’t stand still during trips to historical sites, but the Frisco Heritage Center isn’t just any museum. This historical park offers historic buildings that kids can explore as well as a real steam locomotive and wooden caboose.
17. Wonderland Amusement Park – Amarillo
Yet another of Texas’ great amusement parks, Wonderland contains fun for the entire family. From a mini-golf course and towering coasters to water slides and a train ride, this park is a must-visit for any family that comes to Amarillo.
18. McKenna Children’s Museum – New Braunfels
If you are looking for fun places to visit with kids in New Braunfels, McKenna Children’s Museum is definitely a prime choice. The museum offers fun hands-on learning experiences, from a space center to a kid’s clinic, where children can imagine they’re doctors in a hospital.
The museum also has a cafe where you can get kid-friendly food.
19. La Cantera Resort and Spa – San Antonio
If you are staying in the Texas Hill Country, and want to relax in style, try out the La Cantera Resort and Spa. This resort offers maximum relaxation with a luxury spa, a golf course, and wineries.
But, don’t worry, there’s lots of fun for the little ones too. Kid-friendly activities at the resort include an onsite water park, an arcade, and movie nights.
However, if you want to take a little break from the kids, La Cantera also offers attractions just for grown-ups, like the adult-only pool.
20. Moody Gardens – Galveston
Overall a place to learn about the environment, Moody Gardens is a non-profit amusement park with lots of fun things to do. Some of the most popular attractions in the park include their golf course, aquarium, rainforest pyramid, and paddleboats.
21. San Antonio Zoo – San Antonio
One of Texas’ best wildlife sanctuaries, the San Antonio Zoo allows kids to learn about all kinds of exotic animals, like hippos, parrots, lions, and kangaroos. The site even has the oldest kiddie park in the country, established in 1925.
22. Outdoor Frisco Water Park – Frisco
As one of the best waterparks in Texas, Frisco Water Park has fun activities and attractions, such as The Squirt Station, which is perfect for small children, as well as several waterslides that will keep the older kids entertained.
There’s also the lazy river where adults can relax as they float down the slow-moving swimming pool.
23. Sweet Berry Farm – Marble Falls
Sweet Berry Farm, to the northwest of Austin, is the perfect place to engage in some fun outdoor activities.
In the spring, you can pick strawberries, paint your own creations, or take a pony ride. The fall season, on the other hand, allows for other exciting diversions, like scarecrow stuffing, face painting, and hayrides.
The site also has a petting zoo, and you can get a scoop of homemade ice cream.
Texas is a huge state, so there’s no way that one list can name all of the great things you can do with your kids. So, here’s a few more interesting ideas for when you explore the Lone Star State:
- South Padre Island Beach on South Padre Island – Includes exciting things to do, such as fishing, swimming, and jetskiing
- Dallas Museum of Art in Dallas – A place where older children and teens can appreciate beautiful works of art
- Dallas World Aquarium in Dallas – A great location to see exotic birds, mammals, and, of course, fish
- Amarillo Zoo in Amarillo – Contains animals, like pythons, peacocks, and kangaroos
- National Center for Children’s Illustrated Literature in Abilene – A site to learn about children’s literature
- Gator Country in Beaumont – A great place to safely interact with alligators and other animals
There are plenty of fun things to do in Texas with kids, including thrilling theme parks, water parks, and museums. But, however you decide to enjoy Texas with your kids, just know that adventures are waiting around every corner.
Table of Contents
- 23 Top-Rated Things to Do in Texas with Kids
- 1. Children’s Museum – Houston
- 2. NASA Space Center – Houston
- 3. Six Flags Fiesta Texas – San Antonio
- 4. Natural Bridge Caverns – New Braunfels
- 5. Kemah Boardwalk – Kemah
- 6. Texas Air and Space Museum – Amarillo
- 7. Houston Museum of Natural Science – Houston
- 8. Dinosaur World – Glen Rose
- 9. River Walk – San Antonio
- 10. Big Bend National Park – Alpine
- 11. Texas State Fair – Dallas
- 12. Dixie Dude Ranch – Bandera
- 13. SeaWorld – San Antonio
- 14. Grapevine Vintage Railroad – Grapevine
- 15. Big Thicket Natural Preserve – Kountze
- 16. Frisco Heritage Center – Frisco
- 17. Wonderland Amusement Park – Amarillo
- 18. McKenna Children’s Museum – New Braunfels
- 19. La Cantera Resort and Spa – San Antonio
- 20. Moody Gardens – Galveston
- 21. San Antonio Zoo – San Antonio
- 22. Outdoor Frisco Water Park – Frisco
- 23. Sweet Berry Farm – Marble Falls
- Honorable Mentions