Wanna get out of town? Living in Dallas-Fort Worth puts us in a prime spot to get practically anywhere you want to go, from national parks and lakes to beaches and big cities. Before you prep for your next road trip, check out these 34 family fun destinations, with their approximate mileages from Dallas—and each city’s top attractions for kids in tow.
RELATED: State Parks Within 5 Hours of DFW
For a Quick Road Trip:
Waco // 102 miles
Magnolia Market at the Silos, Magnolia Table and everything Joanna Gaines touches.
Glen Rose // 75 miles
Dinosaur Valley State Park‘s ranger-led kids activities and Fossil Rim Wildlife Center.
Granbury // 69 miles
Granbury City Beach near the historic downtown, and Brazos Drive-In Theater.
Canton // 59 miles
The world’s largest flea market, open Thursday through Sunday before each first Monday of the month.
Road Trip to a Big City:
Oklahoma City // 206 miles
Myriad Botanical Gardens and Riversport’s Youth Zone in the Boathouse District.
Houston // 239 miles
Space Center Houston and Children’s Museum Houston
San Antonio // 280 miles
Beyond the Alamo, the four other San Antonio Missions: Concepción, San José, San Juan, and Espada. Plus, Natural Bridge Caverns.
Austin // 201 miles
Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center‘s Fort Build play area and special exhibits Fortlandia and Luminations.
Road Trips to a Beach or Ocean:
Kemah // 272 miles
Rides and Stingray Reef at Kemah Boardwalk.
Galveston // 289 miles
East Beach, Moody Gardens, Schlitterbahn, Pleasure Pier, the sea excursions on the 1877 Elissa—we have too many favorites.
South Padre Island // 565 miles
Sea Turtle, Inc. and sand castle building lessons on the beach.
RELATED: Take a Family Beach Trip to South Padre Island
Lake Jackson // 304 miles
Hatchery tours and story readings at Sea Center Texas.
Port Aransas // 381 miles
Ride the free ferry from Mustang Island to Aransas Pass and look out for dolphins; book a Red Dragon Pirate Cruise.
Road Trips for a Western Adventure:
Palo Duro Canyon // 305 miles
Palo Duro Canyon State Park and the TEXAS Outdoor Musical at Pioneer Amphitheatre during the summer.
RELATED: 3-Day Family Vacation in Amarillo
Midland-Odessa // 330 miles
George W. Bush Childhood Home and Meteor Crater, the second largest meteor crater in the U.S.
Carlsbad Caverns, New Mexico // 477 miles
Become a Junior Ranger at Carlsbad Caverns National Park.
Roswell, New Mexico // 491 miles
International UFO Museum and Research Center, because you’ve got to, and Bottomless Lakes State Park.
El Paso // 635 miles
El Paso Chihuahuas Baseball, iFly simulated skydiving, and Indian Cliffs Ranch at Cattleman’s Steakhouse, a family-style restaurant on a working ranch with extra kids entertainment like a children’s zoo and movie sets.
For a Small-Town Feel:
Fredericksburg // 264 miles
Enchanted Rock for a long hike, Marktplatz playground in town, and all the holiday festivities.
RELATED: Your Fredericksburg Travel Guide
Marble Falls // 211 miles
Sweet Berry Farm and these amazing treehouse stays at Cypress Valley in nearby Spicewood
New Braunfels-San Marcos // 225 miles
McKenna Children’s Museum, the drive-through safari at Natural Bridge Wildlife Ranch, and a summer floating trip down the Comal or Guadalupe River.
Dripping Springs-Wimberley // 217 miles
Hamilton Pool Reserve and Jacob’s Well natural spring (make reservations and check local conditions before going).
Paris // 105 miles
The 65-foot-tall Paris Texas Eiffel Tower and the 3-mile Trail de Paris that runs from the town into the countryside.
For Getting Immersed in Nature:
Davy Crockett National Forest in Zavalla // 167 miles
Eisenhower State Park in Denison // 78 miles
Lake Arrowhead State Park in Wichita Falls // 142 miles
Ouachita National Forest in Hot Springs, Arkansas // 294 miles
RELATED: 17 Lakes to Visit Around North Texas
For a Lake or Fishing Fix:
Lake Texoma // 92 miles
Lake Whitney // 78 miles
Cedar Creek Reservoir // 85 miles
Lake Ray Roberts // 66 miles
Lake Travis // 196 miles
Broken Bow Lake, Oklahoma // 181 miles
Lake Conroe // 203 miles
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