5 Must Do Things in Baytown

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Umbrella Alley | Photo courtesy of the City of Baytown

In our series of Must Do Things Around Greater Houston, we take a look at Houston’s vast array of neighborhoods to bring you five fun, tasty, and enticing reasons you should give each a visit. Originally published in 2016, we are now refreshing, updating, and adding to this series, including new neighborhoods and destinations.

Over on the north side of Galveston Bay, Baytown sits near the outlets of the Buffalo Bayou and San Jacinto River. Take a ride out east and you’ll find arts, a taste of history, natural beauty and more.

5 Must Do Things in Baytown

  1. Satisfy your need for speed at Houston Raceway Park Formerly known as Royal Purple Raceway, Houston Raceway rocks a quarter-mile drag strip, hosting drag and street races throughout the year. On Fridays nights, hit the strip to race your friends or pit your car against the world famous timers. Cost is $20 for cars and drivers and $10 for spectators (free for kids 12 and under). And be sure to check out the calendar for more upcoming events. Click here for directions.
  2. Take a ride on the historic Lynchburg Ferry The oldest operating ferry service in the state of Texas, the Lynchburg Ferry traces back to 1822, later being used by the Republic of Texas troops in fighting Mexican forces in the Battle of San Jacinto and playing a vital role in Texas’ fight for independence in 1836. Today, the ferry offers free rides across the Houston Ship Channel, from Baytown to the San Jacinto Battleground State Historic Site and the Battleship Texas State Historic Site. Monday through Friday from 4:30am to 8pm; weekends from 11am to 6pm. Click here for directions.
  3. Snap a shot in Umbrella Alley In a collaborative effort between the City of Baytown tourism division, the Baytown Art League, Lee College, and other community partners, Baytown’s “Better Block” initiative seeks to transform abandoned or unappealing areas into beautiful works of art. Head to 124 West Texas Avenue and you’ll find Umbrella Alley, a once-abandoned alley made festive by bright, colorful umbrellas. Click here for directions.
  4. Sip wines at Yepez Vineyard With over 20 acres of grapes, this adobe-style winery creates handcrafted premium wines, offering complimentary tastings, private tastings and special events, weekend entertainment and summer concerts, picnic areas and more. The vineyard is part of the Bay Breeze Wine Trail, along with wineries Clear Creek Vineyard, Frascone Winery, Bruno & George, and Vine 2 Wine. Click here for directions.
  5. Explore natural beauty at the Baytown Nature Center Set on 450-acres along the Houston Ship Channel, the Baytown Nature Center is home to all kinds of wildlife, including over 200 species of birds alone. Head there from sunrise to sunset and enjoy its fishing and crabbing piers, birding trails, butterfly garden, bicycle paths, playground, kayak launch and more. Admission is $4 for adults; $1 for children (5 to 12) and seniors (65 and older). Annual passes are $30 for individuals and $65 for a family (including six adults). Click here for directions.
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Photo courtesy of Houston Raceway Park