Around Houston: Attractions, Amusements & Things to Do for Families

Sea Center Texas in Brazosport | Courtesy of Texas Parks & Wildlife

Find your next family-friendly adventure or distraction at more than 75 attractions, amusements and places offering things to do for families Around Houston.

Whether you’re in need of a new family outing spot or just need to find a place to burn off some energy, we’ve gathered attractions, amusements, museums and more that can be found Around Houston for your next day of family-friendly fun.

While we’ve worked hard to include many of the marquee things to do in the region, in the time of social distancing, certain limitations or restrictions may apply at these locations, so be sure to check ahead of your visit so that you know the way things work.

You’ll find plenty of indoor and outdoor activities in towns and cities around the Houston area, including Brazosport, Clear Lake and the Bay Area, Baytown, Beaumont, Conroe, Deer Park, Galveston, Pearland, Port Arthur, Sugar Land, The Woodlands and Tomball. You can also find more things to do with your family in our Around Houston series, featuring Playgrounds and Public Parks, Hiking and the Outdoors, and Beaches and On the Water.

Of course, it’s also important for you to consider any health precautions before heading out. Our picks below may have certain requirements or restrictions at this moment and these things can change quickly, so be sure to contact your destination ahead of time with any questions or concerns.

Apollo capsule at Space Center Houston | Courtesy of Space Center Houston

Amusements & Attractions for Families Around Houston

Clear Lake, Kemah, Nassau City, Seabrook

  • Bay Area Raceway – In Dickinson, this family entertainment center boasts a quarter-mile Go-Kart track, an arcade brimming with a wide variety of classic and recent games, and a two-story laser tag arena where teams aim to fend off a zombie invasion. Click here for more information.
  • Kemah Boardwalk – Dine along the waterfront, hop aboard a roller coaster or try your best to take home boardwalk prizes. This popular amusement destination is packed with restaurants, shopping, thrill rides and more in a carnival-like boardwalk atmosphere. Click here for more information.
  • Lone Star Flight Museum – Just blocks from Ellington Airport, this spacious all-things-flight museum gives visitors an up-close look at more than a dozen aircraft that chart evolving designs and uses from World War II Heavy Bombers to Air Force jets and more. The Lone Star Flight Museum also features the Texas Aviation Hall of Fame, permanent and traveling gallery exhibitions, and high-flying experiences in their flight simulators. Click here for more information.
  • Main Event Entertainment – Let the kiddos loose at this vast family amusement destination that features bowling, pool tables, laser tag, mini golf and a bustling arcade with a wide variety of games. Perfect for parties of all sizes (kids or adults), Main Event is a popular place to burn some energy or blow off some steam. Click here for more information.
  • San Jacinto Monument – Located on the site of a decisive battle between Sam Houston and General Santa Anna, this towering war memorial stretches into the Texas skies and stands fifteen feet taller than the Washington Monument. Known for its observation deck, the Monument also features galleries of artifacts that span from ancient Mayan and Aztec civilizations to Mexico and the Civil War, including artwork, uniforms and weaponry. Click here for more information.
  • Space Center Houston – The expansive NASA campus has etched itself into history, providing Mission Control for the historic Apollo flights, as well the ongoing space missions aboard the International Space Station. Here, visitors can explore an extensive collection of NASA and space exhibits, learn about the history of spaceflight and the courage of astronauts around the world, and take in the gargantuan sights of rockets, including the SpaceX Falcon, Saturn V, and Space Shuttle. The must-see tram tour will also take visitors through the campus, visiting Mission Control, seeing where the astronauts train for their missions and more. Click here for more information.
  • Texas City Museum – This 30,000-square-foot facility helps visitors to explore the heritage of Texas City and the surrounding region with exhibits that highlight Civil War-era artifacts, the 1947 Texas City Disaster, and other culturally significant people and events to the region. The museum also features the Children’s Discovery Room that boasts hands-on activities to help foster curious imaginations. Click here for more information.
Umbrella Alley | Courtesy of Visit Baytown

Baytown

  • Baytown Historical Museum | FREE – Housed in a former post office, this museum offers visitors a chance to tour through the region’s history, from Native American tribes that originally inhabited the land through the industries that supported the city and beyond. Click here for more information.
  • Royal Purple Raceway – This quarter-mile drag racing strip is host to an annual stop from the NHRA Winston Drag Racing Series, as well as many other racing and motorsports events throughout the year, including when the public takes their souped-up sports cars to the track in the TX2K event. Click here for more information.
  • Public Art in Baytown | FREE – Take the family on a tour of public art in Baytown, with popular stops that include colorful traffic cabinet murals, the brightly shaded canopy of Umbrella Alley, and murals that adorn the exteriors of many of Baytown’s must-see destinations, such as Baytown Nature Center, art galleries and libraries. Click here for more information.
Spindletap-Gladys City Boomtown | Courtesy of Beaumont CVB

Beaumont

  • Beaumont Children’s Museum – Located inside the Beaumont Civic Center, this children’s museum seeks to engage kiddos with activities for all age groups through paleontology, puppet shows, art projects, structure building and more. Click here for more information.
  • Dutch Windmill Museum | FREE – A tribute to Dutch settlers, this replica of a Dutch windmill stands forty feet tall and houses a museum that includes artifacts brought from Holland during settlement, as well as mementos of famous citizens of Nederland. Click here for more information.
  • Edison Museum | FREE – Dedicated to American inventor Thomas Edison, this museum features interactive exhibits, dozens of historic objects, more than 1,400 artifacts and a close examination of the ways Edison contributed to the electrical industry. Click here for more information.
  • Fire Museum of Texas | FREE – For over thirty years, this museum has housed a collection of antique fire engines and firefighting equipment that dates back to the 1800s. Kiddos can dress up in firefighter uniforms and take the fire engine simulator for a spin, or head outside, where a massive fire hydrant makes for an easily ‘Grammable opportunity. Click here for more information.
  • Gator Country – This alligator theme park gives visitors the opportunity to get up close and personal with hands-on activities like holding baby gators for feeding. The sanctuary is home to hundreds of alligators, turtles, snakes and other reptiles, including Big Tex and Big Al, two of the largest alligators in captivity. Click here for more information.
  • Historic Homes in Beaumont – The southeast region is host to many historic homes that have been restored to their 19th and early 20th century glory. In and around Beaumont, La Maison Des Acadiens pays tribute to early French settlers; Heritage House Museum features historic artifacts from the region in a middle-upper class home built in 1902; John Jay French Museum was built in 1845 and allows visitors to explore what an early pioneer settlement was like; and The Chambers House and W.H. Stark House offer turn-of-the-century homes to explore in their restored splendor.
  • Spindletop-Gladys City Boomtown – On the campus of Lamar University, this educational park lets visitors on a self-guided tour through 15 replica buildings from the late-1800s atop the historic Spindletop oilfield. Through artifacts and the various structures on site, visitors get a view into the work and life of those that lived in Gladys City. Check out their upcoming schedule for re-enactments of the Lucas Gusher. Click here for more information.
  • Texas Energy Museum – Explore the world of petroleum science and technology through exhibitions that trace the history of Texas oil. Visitors can also check out the collection of historical photographs, maps and other materials related to the southeast Texas oil field by making research requests in advance. Click here for more information.
Brazosport Center for the Arts & Sciences | Courtesy of Visit Houston

Brazosport

Saint Francis Wolf Sanctuary near Conroe | Courtesy of Saint Francis Wolf Sanctuary

Conroe

  • 7 Acre Wood – This old-fashioned family park invites visitors of all ages to check out animals on the farm in their petting zoo, take a swing at the mini-golf course, hop on the playgrounds or take on a role in the Western Play Town and more. Click here for more information.
  • Fernland Historic Park – Get a glimpse at history with these 19th-century homes and cabins, dating as far back as the 1830s. These self-guided tours give visitors the chance to take in early Texas architecture and come away with a sense of what life might have been like for early settlers. Click here for more information.
  • Heritage Museum of Montgomery County – Built in 1924, the historic Grogan-Cochran home houses the Heritage Museum, which examines the people, places and events that built Montgomery County into what it is today. Other exhibits look at art, Black history, and documents that trace the design and creation of the Lone Star Flag. Click here for more information.
  • N.H. Davis Pioneer Complex & Museum | FREE – Dating as far back as 1851, this pioneer home and museum features period furnishings and memorabilia that help to illustrate what pioneer life was life in the mid-19th century. Click here for more information.
  • Old Iron Works | FREE – Specializing in auto restoration, this shop also serves as a tour of beautifully detailed antique vehicles and classic cars in their showroom. Click here for more information.
  • Saint Francis Wolf Sanctuary – Recently relocated to Navasota, west of Conroe, this wolf sanctuary provides permanent homes to non-releasable wolves and wolfdogs so that they may live their natural lives safely and comfortably. Guided tours are offered on specific days. Click here for more information.

Deer Park

  • Patrick’s Cabin | FREE – Serving a place in Texas Independence history, Dr. George Moffit Patrick’s cabin served as host to General Sam Houston as they drafted the initial treaty papers to secure Texas’ independence from Mexico after the Battle of San Jacinto. A representation of that cabin can be visited in Deer Park, a city which, as a result, bears the moniker of “The Birthplace of Texas”. Click here for more information.
Courtesy of Moody Gardens

Galveston

  • Galveston Children’s Museum – When on the Island, this Children’s Museum is a great place to let the little ones’ imaginations run wild. Kiddos can role play in the Kids’ Clinic and Our Town exhibits, tinker and build, flex their artistic muscles, or stage an impromptu puppet show. A special exhibit space also gives the youngest explorers room to play in a scaled-to-size environment. Click here for more information.
  • Galveston Go Karts & Fun Center – Take a lap around this Go Kart track located just off Seawall Boulevard, then explore what else is on offer, from arcades and bumper cars to axe throwing and virtual reality, at this Island family fun center. Click here for more information.
  • Galveston Naval Museum – Head over to Seawolf Park on the east side of the Island and check out the colossal vessels parked at the Galveston Naval Museum; the USS Cavalla, a World War II submarine, and the USS Stewart, the only Edsall-class destroyer escort preserved in the United States. Click here for more information.
  • Galveston Railroad Museum – Hop aboard for a journey through the history of this vital mode of transportation, complete with locomotives, passenger cars to explore, model trains, and the People’s Gallery, which features more than thirty plaster statues that help convey the role of railroading in Galveston. Swing by on Saturdays and kiddos can hop aboard the Harborside Express for a fifteen minute train ride west and back. Click here for more information.
  • Haunted Mayfield Manor – Great for ages 11 and older, this year-round spooky haunted house attraction invites visitors to step into the Mayfield Manor and explore the strange story of Dr. Mayfield, a turn-of-the-20th-century doctor engaged in mental illness experiments on unknowing patients. Click here for more information.
  • Historic Strand District – The historic heart of the Island, this district is bustling with shops, restaurants and more, housed within buildings that have stood here for more than a century in their exquisite details. From here, the central location makes for a quick stroll over to the museums, boat tours and more along the harbor side. Click here for more information.
  • Magic Carpet Golf – Putt away with stunning views of the waves from this fun-filled 18-hole mini golf course, a longtime fixture on Seawall Boulevard. Click here for more information.
  • Moody Gardens – One of Galveston’s crown jewels, this trio of glimmering pyramids house educational experiences that immerse visitors in the world of nature. A 10-story Rainforest pyramid features more than 2,000 exotic plants and animals, including saki monkeys, sloths, birds and more, while the Aquarium pyramid takes a deep dive into the ocean with up-close experiences with marine species from around the world. In addition to these, traveling exhibits are hosted in the Discovery pyramid, visitors can get their feet wet at the outdoor Palm Beach water park, or take in stunning productions in their multiple theaters. Click here for more information.
  • Ocean Star Offshore Drilling Rig Museum – This decommissioned offshore drilling rig is now a museum that helps visitors explore the oil and gas industry through film presentations, interactive displays, informational exhibits and more. Click here for more information.
  • Pirates! Legends of the Gulf Coast – Learn about the legends and myths of swashbucklers that once roamed the waters off the Galveston coast with costumed characters, informational exhibits and more. Click here for more information.
  • Pleasure Pier – This packed pier stretches into the Gulf of Mexico, brimming with restaurants, thrill rides, games, and retail shops in a carnival-like boardwalk atmosphere. Click here for more information.
  • Shark Attack & Mysterious Underworld 5D Theater Rides – While part of the Pleasure Pier experience, this 5D theater sits across Seawall Boulevard and offers guests a chance to check out immersive, exhilarating theater ride adventures that bring visitors up close to a prehistoric Megalodon shark or deep in the depths of a dark mine. Click here for more information.
  • Texas Seaport Museum & 1877 Tall Ship Elissa – Near Pier 21 on the harbor side of Galveston, the Texas Seaport Museum brings visitors into the rich history of the Island and its important role in immigration, as well as merchant routes. The 1877 Tall Ship Elissa, docked outside, is one of only three ships of her kind in the world to still actively sail and visitors can take to the decks for a self-guided tour throughout the ship. Click here for more information.
  • The Bryan Museum – Housing scores of artifacts, artwork and more, this museum invites visitors to explore the history of Texas and the American West on the beautiful grounds of the former Galveston Orphans Home. Click here for more information.
Courtesy of the 1940 Air Terminal Museum

Pearland

Port Arthur

  • Colorado Canyon – This mini golf destination in Port Arthur also offers up an arcade and laser maze for the kiddos, but also an opportunity to do some gemstone mining for a unique experience in Southeast Texas. Kids can sift through panning sluices for authentic gemstones, fossils and arrowheads to take home. Click here for more information.
  • Museum of the Gulf Coast – At this eclectic museum in Port Arthur, visitors get a taste of the Gulf Coast region with memorabilia and galleries of native people, musicians and athletes, including a replica of Janis Joplin’s psychedelic Porsche; artwork by Robert Rauschenberg; a 125-foot mural that paints the evolution of the area, and more. Click here for more information.
HMNS at Sugar Land | Courtesy of Visit Sugar Land

Sugar Land

Texas TreeVentures | Courtesy of Visit The Woodlands

The Woodlands

Courtesy of Oil Ranch

Tomball

  • Oil Ranch – Stretching for more than fifty acres, this ranch offers visitors train and pony rides, a petting zoo, gemstone mining, fishing, putt putt, swimming and much more. Click here for more information.
  • Railroad Depot | FREE – The historic 1907 train depot features memorabilia, original art works, antiques, model railroads and a 1907 railroad car to explore. Click here for more information.
  • The Tomball Museum Center – Dedicated to the preservation of historical and educational pursuits, this museum center contains numerous antiques and artifacts, as well as more than a dozen buildings and structures from the turn-of-the-century era and older, helping visitors get in touch with bygone times and to appreciate the evolution of the region. Click here for more information.

Social Distancing & COVID-19

Businesses in Houston have opened under modified protocols, following guidelines administered by local health officials, the State of Texas and CDC. At this time, guidance from experts urges people to continue wearing face masks when in public spaces, practice social distancing of at least six feet, limit your touching of surfaces and frequently use hand sanitizer or soap and water to keep your hands clean.

Before heading out, take time to familiarize with your destination’s requirements or restrictions at this moment, and be sure to contact them ahead of time with any questions or concerns.

Gemini capsule at Space Center Houston | Courtesy of Space Center Houston

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