7 Family Friendly Summer Destinations in Texas

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When the sun comes out to play, Texans head for their favorite summer destinations across the Lone Star state. Create cherished family memories with these seven exciting adventures that are true Texas summer traditions:

1. MIDLAND ROCKHOUNDS
milb.com/schedule/index.jsp?sid=t237

The three-year reigning Texas League Champions play 70 home baseball games this season, and Security Bank Ballpark offers several ways to join in the fun, ranging from BOGO Ticket Tuesdays and Thirsty Thursdays to Fireworks Fridays and team memorabilia giveaway nights. Kids stay entertained with on-site activities, including a playground, splash pad, picnic areas, Fun Zone inflatables, pictures with Rocky RockHound and a ride aboard the replica Union Pacific train.

 

2. SIX FLAGS OVER TEXAS, ARLINGTON
sixflags.com/overtexas

A favorite vacation destination since 1961, Six Flags features 50 heart-pounding and family-friendly rides. Boasting the most coasters in the Southwest, the amusement park has two exhilarating experiences for this season — the immersive Galactic Attack Virtual Reality Coaster and the free-fly coaster The Joker. Keep costs down by using online promotions and opting for a picnic lunch just outside the gates. Beat the heat by stopping by the Six Flags Hurricane Harbor located just across the street.

 

3. SCHLITTERBAHN WATERPARK & RESORT, NEW BRAUNFELS
schlitterbahn.com/new-braunfels

The 2015 World’s Best Waterpark sits just outside San Antonio, covering 70 acres along the banks of the spring-fed Comal River. One admission ticket offers access to four parks filled with classic waterslides, thrilling aquatic rides and epic river adventures. A complimentary tram can carry you from water coasters to six-story blackout tunnels to pirate-themed water playgrounds.

 

4. ABILENE ZOO
abilenezoo.org

A visit to the Abilene Zoo is filled with fun and excitement for animal lovers of all ages. The Abilene Zoo is home to more than 1,000 animals from around the globe. With reasonable admission, the zoo is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily and located in Nelson Park, across from the Taylor County Expo Center, off Highway 36 at 2070 Zoo Lane, Nelson Park, Abilene, Texas 79602. Discover the wonderful world of wildlife at the Abilene Zoo.

 

5. MCDONALD OBSERVATORY
mcdonaldobservatory.org

Book a room in Fort Davis to take in the sparkling night sky at the nearby Davis Mountains in west Texas. Using high-powered telescopes, you’ll have an up-close view of summer constellations and other celestial objects whether you join the Twilight Program, Star Party or Special Viewing groups.

 

6. BIG BEND NATIONAL PARK
nps.gov/bibe

The great bend in the mighty Rio Grande has carved out an ecological wonder that spans lush valleys, the sun-scorched Chihuahuan Desert and soaring bluffs atop the Chisos Mountains. Along the 240 miles of hiking trails, river trips, bicycling adventures or scenic drives, you might glimpse a golden eagle or roadrunner. There are also plenty of opportunities for fishing, horseback riding, camping and stargazing in the coal-black skies.

 

7. NATURAL BRIDGE CAVERNS, SAN ANTONIO
naturalbridgecaverns.com

Explore the nation’s largest underground network of caves on a 70-minute tour that begins by crossing a 60-foot limestone bridge and traverses through a stunning collection of stalactite formations. Adventure seekers can sign up for themed tours, zipline through the treetops, get lost in the maze challenge or mine for gems and fossils.

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