Are you looking for the best things to do in Texas? If so, checkout our guide for the ultimate bucket list of what to see in Tx.
Texas, has so much to offer visitors. For those who want to travel in Texas, checkout our guide for fun road trips in Texas. Whether you are looking for National Parks and outdoor adventures, museums and historical sites like the Alamo. To exploring bluebonnets the national flower of Texas, springs, caves and Texas wine country.
15 Best Things To Do In Texas: The Ultimate TX Bucket List
You can’t come to Texas without stopping at this historic marker! The Alamo, located in San Antonio is one of the attractions in Texas you can’t miss. The Alamo is known as the Shrine of Texas Liberty, and it plays a huge part of Texas history! You can take a guided tour and see everything the Alamo has to offer. There is no admission charged, making it one of the free things to do in Texas. All entries are timed currently!
Make sure to walk through the Living History and talk to the Living Historians. Here you’ll get an up-close and personal take on what life was like during the 1800s and even learn about events surrounding the Battle of the Alamo in 1836! This historical landmark flew flags from 5 countries during its history!
San Antonio Riverwalk
Name the #1 attraction in Texas, the San Antonio Riverwalk, is a must see! This is one of the cool things to do in Texas for adults and children alike. As you stroll along the cobblestone treelined paths along the river, you can eat, shop, drink and even take a boat ride!
The Riverwalk is a destination in of itself. The Paseo del Rio as it is also know was built in 1929 to control flooding of the San Antonio River. Now, the 15 miles of riverwalk are broken up into 3 sections : the Downtown Reach, the Museum Reach, and the Mission Reach. The 5 miles downtown section, is the most popular section of the riverwalk.
You can walk, bike, or kayak the riverwalk! Making it the perfect year round activity! Visit one of the museums, art galleries, or take in the history at this UNESCO World Heritage Site. Trust us this is one of the cool things to do in TX that needs to be on your bucket list.
Big Bend National Park
Big Bend National Park has to be on your bucket list for Texas. The admission fee to enter the national park is $30 per car, or $15 for single visitors and it is a good for 7 days. As Big Bend is located in the desert, the best times to visit are late fall through early spring. Winter is a gorgeous time of year, while summer can bring scorching temperatures.
The scenic vistas here are diverse, with opportunities to see wildlife, camping, historical sites and more. Explore sea fossils, dinosaur bones to volcanic dikes in the canyons of the Big Bend of the Rio Grande—Santa Elena, Mariscal, and Boquillas.
Stargazing here is one of the things to do in Texas at night. Big Bend is known as one of the best star gazing spots in the US as it has the least amount of light pollution of any other national parks in the continental US. Camp at one of the 4 campgrounds or camp backcountry out in the wild to really experience Big Bend!
Located in Amarillo, along Route 66 Cadillac Ranch is an iconic art instillation of Cadillac vehicles stationed in the ground. Since 1974, when the 10 Cadillac’s were first buried vertically in the ground it has had visitors stopping by.
Next, you can bring your own spray paint, or you may be lucky enough to find a can that was left behind by a previous visitor! People come from all over to spray paint their own mark on a vehicle!
After spray painting, stop by the visitor center and buy jewelry made from paint chips that have come off the cars! There’s no record of how many layers of paint are currently on this fixture!
Founded in 1846,Fredericksburg is an old and enchanting German town. Whether you want to find an authentic German restaurant to eat at, explore museums, check out historical sites, or just browse the shops downtown, there are so many things to do here!
Furthermore, Texas hill country is one of the things to see in Texas that you can’t miss. It is home to vineyards producing award-winning wines. There are over 50 wineries in Fredericksburg making wine tasting one of the most popular activities in Texas.
From a limousine tour to a trolley car, or a shuttle bus, there are over 20 different options of private tour companies to chose from. They offer tours for half the day or the whole day. If you are looking for a more casual approach to the Fredericksburg wine tours, consider the 290 Wine Shuttle.
Make sure to check out our list of the best things to do in Fredericksburg!
Got to the Texas Springs
For those looking for outdoor places to visit in Texas, head to one of the Texas springs. Hamilton Pool preserve has some of the prettiest blue water in Texas. In addition, there is a 50 foot waterfall that plunges into the water below creating a swimming pot that visitors love!
Before you go, check the Hamilton Pool website to make sure that swimming is allowed during your visit. Oftentimes, due to falling rocks or hazardous weather, the pool can be closed for guest safety. Reservations to attend the area must be made in advance online.
To enjoy the area out of the water, the hiking trail around the pool is a fun and scenic activity. It is a roughly 30-minute hike from your car to the pool. But, the terrain is rough and rugged, so make sure you’re up for the challenge. Guided hikes are offered for visitors to learn more about the area and the wildlife that surrounds it and takes visitors to areas they can’t visit themselves.
Jacob’s Well is located in Hays County and is one of the most popular things to do Tx! The natural well area is roughly 81 acres and is open 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily! It is the second-largest submerged cave in Texas and is 140-feet deep!
However, you must make a reservation prior to coming here and swimming is only allowed between May 1-September 30. The allowed time for each swim reservation is 2 hours, so make sure you plan your day for this! You can also hike in this area, and you do not need a reservation to hike, only to swim!The water here stays a constant 68 degrees, with water being fed in from the Trinity Aquifer.
From October to April, visitors can take a free guided tours on Saturday mornings. The tour explains the history of Jacobs well, as well as explains about wildlife and vegetation.
Natural Bridge Caverns
For those looking for one of the best activities in Texas, check out the Natural Bridge Caverns. This family owned attraction, was discovered in the 1960’s and stays a constant 70 degrees as you explore 180 feet under ground.
We highly recommend taking the discovery tour with light illuminations, the hidden passages tour, or the adventure tours. This is another of the best things to do in Texas with children as they have an outdoor mining area were you can mine of gems and fossils! Finish up your day with ice cream and a visit to the general store.
As you explore Texas’ largest caverns you will guided through the underground chambers. Make sure to dress warm as it is 70 degrees. Explore the spectacular ancient formations and chambers.
Padre Island National Seashore
For those who have time to travel in Texas, head out to Padre Island National Seashore. This is the 3rd national park on our bucket list of the cool things to do in Texas. What makes Padre Island unique is the is the longest undeveloped barrier island in the World. In addition, it is where the Gulf of Mexico is separated from the Laguna Madre, one of a few hypersaline lagoons in the world.
Admission here is one $10 per vehicle for a 1 day pass and $25 for a day pass. Visitors here can explore the 66 miles of coastline, with beaches, the lagoon, or even drive the 60 miles down to the Mansfield Channel.
Your first stop should be the Malaquite Visitor Center & Pavilion to grab maps and get aquatinted with the park. In addition, you can attend a ranger led tour, camp around the park, and watch the hatching of sea turtles or even go birding.
One of the top things to see in Texas are the Bluebonnets! The official state flower of Texas is a breathtaking experience as they are grown in fields creating a vast blue backdrop!
These flowers grow best in the Texas Hill country area. Stop by the Bluebonnet House in Marble Falls, or head to Ennis, just south of Dallas, or travel through the Official Bluebonnet City of Texas! In Ennis, you will see the official Texas Bluebonnet Trail or head to Burnet, the Official Bluebonnet Capital of Texas!
For those who have seeing Bluebonnets on their Texas bucket list, spring is the best time to visit. If theTexas winter is mild, they may start blooming as early as late February or March. Generally, though, early April will be your best bet for when to visit!
Museum of Fine Arts Houston
For those looking for what to do in Texas and want to visit a museum, head to the Museum Fine Arts in Houston. Admission is $19 for adults, and $12 for college students and youth. Military and children under 12 are free.
The museum houses a 70,000 work collection from antiquity period to present day. It is the largest museum in the southwest region. As you wander the museum you can see showcases on American panting and sculpture, Art of Asia, European art, prints and drawings among others.
This is one of the best things to do in Houston for adults and you shouldn’t miss it!
Dallas Arboretum and Botanical Gardens
Located in Dallas, the Arboretum and Botanical Gardens is one of the fun things to do in Texas! Admission is $20 for adults, $16 of seniors, and $12 for children. With an extra $3 to enter the children’s adventure garden and it costs $5 to park.
In the women’s garden you can walk along sculptures and infinity pools, to the Color garden featuring large displays of season flowers. There are 66 acer of beautiful gardens to explore. This is one of the things to do in Texas with kids, as the Rory Meyers Children’s garden teaches kids about life and science with over 8 acer to explore.
As it can be overwhelming to know where to begin, they offer sample itineraries that highlight the best places to picnic to best spots to explore with children. Come spend the day exploring the gardens!
On Mustang Island this is one of Texas’ Gulf beach destinations. For those looking for outdoor Texas activities, Port Aransas Beach is ranked as on the best family beaches and one of the best fishing spots in the USA!
Port Aransas Beach is ranked one of the top ten family beaches in the USA. Why not make a weekend trip here, where you can explore the 18 miles of coastline, where beach fires and camping are allowed.
Mustang Island State Park has an admission fee, but is a great options for those looking for things to do in Texas with children. Camp in one of the 100 spots, or paddle along the coast through over 20 miles of marked paddling trails.
Or head to San Jose Island a privately owned wildlife preserve. Take the ferry from Port Aransas, and explore the wildlife, shelling, birding.
Guadalupe Mountains National Park
Guadalupe Mountains National Park is the second national park on our bucket list of places to go in Texas ! Known for having the 4 highest peaks in Texas, the most extensive Permian fossil reef and the stargazing on a clear night that is unlike anywhere else! From here, you can see over 11,000 stars and have a perfect view of the Milky Way!
You can also hike any of their numerous trails, or spend a few days camping on the land. If you’re crunched for time, you can visit their visitor’s center and spend some time in the museum!
The entrance fee to the park is $10 per person, and the pass is good for 7 days. Giving visitors plenty of time to hike the over 80 miles of trials. Some of the most popular spots in the National Park are McKittrick Canyon, Salt Basin Dunes, The Frejole Ranch, Dog Canyon, and Williams ranch.
Space Center Houston And The Johnson Space Center
The Space Center Houston is one of the most interesting things to do in Texas. In addition, the Johnson Space Center is a short drive away. At the Space Center, the museum guides visitors through the history of America’s space program.
As you walk through the exhibits, each one corresponds to a different time in NASA’s history. You will have the opportunity to touch a moon rock – yes, from the actual moon. Or you can step into the cockpit of a replica space shuttle. This has to be on your bucket list for Texas!
Learn about what NASA sees as the future of space travel and exploration. At the Johnson Space Center, you can tour the area where astronauts train and see a docked space shuttle. Depending on when you visit, you may get the opportunity to see one of NASA’s astronauts at work! It’s easily one of the coolest places to go in Texas!