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Fun Family Activities In and Around Houston

Updated on February 24, 2013

Vacation in Houston? Why Not?

Believe it or not, Houston, TX is a very well-kept secret on a number of levels. It's actually the 4th-largest city in the country. It's also home to the second-largest number of Fortune 500 countries after New York. Moreover, it's also known as the "Energy Capital of the World" because of the large number of energy companies located there.

Aside from the corporate and business aspects, Houston also has a lot to offer from a cultural standpoint. There are always lots of events and activities going on that are fun for the entire family. Thus, while Houston may not be the first place that spring to mind when you think "family vacation," there is quite a lot to see and do from that perspective.

(Photo of Houston Galleria, 7th-largest shopping mall in the U.S. Source:; Original uploader: Postoak at en.wikipedia)

Houston Children's Museum

Located in Houston's Museum District, the Houston Children's Museum has the distinction of being the #1 Children's Musem in the country. It's 14 galleries are specifically designedto engage young minds (old ones, too!), and are packed with fun and engaging activities. You can find more at Houston Children's Museum.

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Houston Zoo

Zoos are always fun, and the Houston Zoo is no exception. With 1.6 million visitors annually, it is the 7th-most visited zoo in the nation.

Houston Children's Festival

I terms of family fun, it's hard to top the Houston Children's Festival. Not only is this annual celebration the #1 Children's Festival in the country, but it is also rated by Frommers Travel Guide as "One of the World's 300 Unmissable Events!" You can find out more about at Houston Children's Festival.


Kemah Boardwalk

Located just 20 miles from Houston, the Kemah Boardwalk is fun for the whole family. There are amusement park rides (roller coaster, ferris wheel, etc.), midway games, restaurants, shopping, boat excursions and more. Various boardwalk entertainers will enthrall you with their antics, whether it's juggling, fire-dancing or more. And don't forget the Kemah Aquarium, where you can feed and pet stingrays at Stingray Reef, as well as walk through the rainforest exhibit. Find out more at Kemah Boardwalk.

Houston Space Center

NASA's Space Center is Houston's #1 attraction. There are literally out-of-this world exhibits, as well as great activities for adults and kids. Find out more at Space Center Houston.


Schlitterbahn Galveston Island

This giant waterpark located on Galveston Island (about 45 miles south of Houston) is open year-round. Attractions include high-speed slides, tube chutes and children's play areas. It has an enclosed indoor area in which - from October to April - the water and air remain heated to at least 80 degrees. With numerous heated attractions, the indoor area has been rated the #1 Indoor Waterpark in the World by Amusement Today. More information is avalable at Schlitterbahn Galveston.

(Photo source:

Houston Family Vacation Poll

With all that's available in and around Houston, would you consider taking a family vacation there?

See results

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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Houston is a great place for shopping. Did you know that it has alligators?

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      I've visited Houston twice in my life. The first time was many years ago and I went ice skating at the Galleria. It was neat for me to see a photo of the Gallleria ice rink in your intro photo. I would love to visit Houston again.

    • malena10 profile image


      6 years ago

      i would love to see Houston Zoo and Houston generally

    • Diva2Mom profile image


      6 years ago

      I lived in San Antonio, Tx and went to Dallas and Austin, but not Houston. Now, I know what I missed. Beautiful place! Great detailed presentation! You convinced me to go there now, haha! God bless.

    • Camden1 profile image


      6 years ago

      We went to Houston for a family wedding. I wish we had done some of these cool activities - especially the water park!

    • goo2eyes lm profile image

      goo2eyes lm 

      6 years ago

      houston seems to be a nice place to visit. lovely pics. thanks for sharing.

    • CruiseReady profile image


      6 years ago from East Central Florida

      I lived in Houston for a number of years. While I enjoyed working there, I really never felt at home there. I think the size and the land locked feeling was what did it. (It's a good hour to the Gulf, way more from the far side of the city) But we still go back annually to visit family, and there are a lit of things I do like about it.

    • profile image


      6 years ago

      Never knew you could do all that in Houston.


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