Family & Kid-Friendly Getaways from Houston: # Trips for All Ages to Enjoy
Houston is one of the most sought-after cities in Texas because of its culture, art, and family-friendly attractions. It is a destination that caters to the interests of locals and tourists, offering a broad range of activities that ensure a good time for the entire family.
Houston provides opportunities for both indoor and outdoor adventures suitable for all ages. Families can explore the city's museums, visit interactive exhibits, and engage in educational activities. Alternatively, outdoor fun includes amusement parks or a short drive to Galveston Island, where you can kayak, play mini golf, build sandcastles, jet ski, or paddle board.
In addition to enjoying the local scene, if you're open to an extended commute, Houston is conveniently located within Texas and only a short drive or flight to neighboring states and attractions, like New Orleans and Orlando, making it an ideal destination for families seeking a memorable and enjoyable experience.
With its different options, Houston ensures that everyone, from the youngest members to the adults, will have a fantastic time exploring the city and its surroundings.
Quick Answer: Family & Kid-Friendly Getaways from Houston
Kid-Friendly Day Trips from Houston
- Lovers of history and nature - Huntsville
- Fans of adventure and art - The Woodlands
- Water enthusiasts - League City
Family Weekend Getaways from Houston
- Fans of sports, shopping, and fashion - Dallas
- Live music and quirky activities - Austin
- Fans of history and family fun - San Antonio
Best Getaways From Houston for Families
- Mardi Gras and the French Quarter - New Orleans, Louisiana
- Lovers of cultural heritage - El Paso
- Fans of theme parks - Orlando, Florida
Kid-Friendly Day Trips from Houston
If you're searching for kid-friendly getaways from Houston, these destinations are a fantastic option because they offer entertainment that will engage travelers of all ages. Each location is perfect for a quick but fulfilling day trip that requires less than 2-hours of drive time.
- Great for: Lovers of history and nature
- Highlights of Huntsville:
- Little more than 1 hour from Houston
- Navigate via car
- Moderately priced hotels
- Walking distance to many outdoor activities
How to Get to Huntsville
When traveling from downtown Houston to Huntsville, you'll need to head towards Highway I-69, then merge onto I-610 West in the direction of Hardy Toll Road. Continue on I-610 West until you reach I-45 Frontage Road. Take the exit onto the I-45 Frontage Road, which will lead you to 11th Street in Huntsville.
Things to Do in Huntsville
Huntsville has a rich history and abundant natural surroundings that your family will surely enjoy. While exploring Huntsville or passing through the area, visitors are immediately captivated by the impressive 67-foot tall statue of Sam Houston, prominently positioned above Interstate 45. This remarkable statue stands so high that it surpasses the surrounding trees, creating a breathtaking sight that will leave your entire family in awe.
In addition to admiring the awe-inspiring Sam Houston statue, you can enjoy the natural splendor of Huntsville while spending quality time at Huntsville State Park. While enjoying the park, you can participate in various activities such as fishing, swimming, camping, hiking, picnicking, and observing the wildlife-including alligators that live in the park. It's worth noting, however, that while it's an exciting experience, feeding the alligators is not advised for safety reasons.
Where to Stay in Huntsville
Huntsville has several impressive Airbnbs to choose from; however, we recommend this cottage that offers two bedrooms, two private bathrooms, and free parking, so you should have enough space for the entire family. This Airbnb is centrally located, quiet, and near most of Huntsville’s attractions.
If you require a hotel, we suggest University Hotel. University Hotel is unique to Huntsville and offers several options, including early check-in, late check-out, WIFI, and on-campus family events that your family can enjoy while at the hotel.
2. The Woodlands
- Perfect for: Fans of adventure and art
- Highlights of The Woodlands:
- About 30 minutes north of Houston
- Take a Lyft or taxi
- Outdoor recreation and family events
- Hotels are moderately priced
How to Get to The Woodlands
Getting to The Woodlands from IAH Airport is a straightforward journey. Upon exiting the airport, you'll proceed to the Hardy Toll Road and merge onto I-45 North. From there, you'll merge onto Woodlands Parkway, the gateway to The Woodlands.
Things to Do in The Woodlands
The Woodlands offers creative indoor and outdoor activities that everyone in the family can appreciate. If you seek outdoor adventure, consider exploring Texas Treeventures, an exhilarating outdoor aerial obstacle course, or cooling off at the outdoor splash pads. For a more laid-back experience, you can rent a swan boat at The Woodlands Mall. The excitement continues indoors with options like taking the Town Center Trolley to the Children's Museum, a non-profit establishment with engaging activities for kids. Another excellent choice is Playstreet Museum, a locally owned venue that provides children with various exercises, including pottery painting.
If you desire a more relaxed day, you can unwind at The Woodlands Mall, indulging in treats like ice cream and cookies while enjoying the Carousel. Alternatively, Restaurant Row at Hughes Landing presents an opportunity to sample colorful macarons and a wide selection of other goodies, catering to the sweetest tooth in your family.
Where to Stay in The Woodlands
You’ll discover many lodging options in The Woodlands, but this Airbnb stands out as a hidden gem, as attested by previous guests. Situated amidst lively entertainment and excellent shopping opportunities, this Airbnb offers a serene garden oasis where birds chirp morning melodies. This remarkable home away from home is truly a must-see.
Alternatively, if your family prefers a stay at a local hotel, consider checking out EVEN Hotels: Shenandoah-The Woodlands. Not only will your human family members be warmly welcomed here, but pets are also embraced. The hotel offers convenient parking, a refreshing pool, and room options to suit your preferences.
3. League City
- Well-suited for: Water enthusiasts
- Highlights of League City:
- Kemah Boardwalk
- Less than a 50-minute drive
- Rent a car
- Galveston Island
How to Get to League City
If you're traveling from George Bush Intercontinental Airport (IAH) to League City, the drive will take approximately under an hour. Begin by heading towards I-45 South and continue until you merge onto the exit for NASA and subsequently onto Old Galveston Road. Once you've merged onto Old Galveston Road, continue driving roughly a mile until you reach League City.
Things to Do in League City
League City, located in Galveston County, offers an ideal destination for water enthusiasts as it is just a 40-minute drive from Galveston Island and near the Gulf of Mexico. Families of all sizes will find plenty of things to do in this area. To start, you can explore the beauty of Helen's Garden in League City, which features scenic walking paths, ponds, and a serene atmosphere.
Another nearby attraction is the Kemah Boardwalk, only about 20 minutes away from League City. While not a water park per se, Kemah Boardwalk offers a wide range of activities suitable for everyone, including fishing, live music, water sports, and more.
For a memorable experience, take a short drive to Galveston Island, where families can visit Pleasure Pier, Moody Gardens, and Schlitterbahn Waterpark. Schlitterbahn offers water attractions, such as water slides, wave pools, and lazy rivers, providing endless fun for all ages.
Considering the many activities available in and around Houston and League City, many visitors and residents purchase a CityPass. These passes offer discounts and cost-saving packages, making it an attractive option for families looking to maximize their experience while saving money.
Where to Stay in League City
To enhance your stay in League City, we are pleased to recommend this Airbnb accommodation. It offers a convenient location, within a short walking distance from Kemah and a quick drive to both Downtown Houston and Galveston Island.
If you prefer a hotel experience, we highly recommend the South Shore Harbour Resort and Conference Center. Renowned as the "largest full-service waterside resort and conference center" in Southeast Texas, as stated on its website, it provides exceptional amenities and services for a comfortable and enjoyable stay.
Family Weekend Getaways from Houston
If you're seeking weekend getaways from Houston for families without venturing too far from the city, here are some destinations worth considering. These getaways are within a 5-hour drive, allowing you to enjoy a memorable weekend trip.
- Great for: Fans of sports, shopping, and fashion
- Highlights of Dallas:
- 3 hours and 30 minutes
- Navigate via rental car
- Dallas Cowboys
- Dallas Arts District
How to Get to Dallas
Dallas is a unique city worth the approximately 3.5-hour road trip from Downtown Houston. To reach Dallas, you can take I-45 North and then I-30 West. As you approach the city, follow the signs for South Akard Street, which will lead you into Dallas.
Things to Do in Dallas
Dallas, conveniently located north of Houston, is a 42-minute drive from Fort Worth and only 30 minutes from Arlington. One of the most renowned NFL teams, the Dallas Cowboys, attracts families nationwide to witness their games at the AT&T Stadium in Arlington. Dallas has a strong sports culture, with teams like the Dallas Mavericks (NBA) and the Dallas Stars (NHL) also captivating fans.
Dallas is also a paradise for fashion and shopping enthusiasts, with the opportunity to experience Dallas Fashion Week and indulge in the city's dynamic fashion scene.
Six Flags Over Texas in Arlington is a must-visit destination for families seeking thrilling adventures. The amusement park offers exciting rides, entertaining shows, and even opportunities to meet beloved Looney Tunes characters.
Dallas offers several family activities and attractions, making it a perfect destination for a unique getaway.
Where to Stay in Dallas
Dallas offers an outstanding selection of rental properties that showcase its unique architecture and cater to families. If you're seeking a spacious accommodation that truly captures the essence of Dallas, I recommend exploring this Vrbo listing.
If you prefer a local hotel's convenience, an exceptional option is Lorenzo Hotel, which offers premium theme suites, corner suites, deluxe guest rooms and is a short walk from restaurants and museums. They warmly welcome pets, so your fur babies can join you on your Dallas adventure. This place is truly extraordinary and highly recommended for your stay in Dallas.
- Best Known for: Live music and quirky activities
- Highlights of the Austin:
- 2 hours 44 minutes from IAH Airport
- Perfect for music lovers
- Texas state capitol
- Live music capital of the world
How to Get to the Austin
To reach Austin from downtown Houston, head west on I-10 and continue onto State Highway 71 West. Take the Cesar Chavez Street exit and proceed towards East 7th Street. From there, navigate towards Congress Avenue, and you will find yourself in Austin.
Things to Do in the Austin
Austin, now acclaimed as the world's live music capital, offers family-friendly experiences and live music throughout the city, including festivals like the Austin Area Jazz Festival, Austin City Limits Music Festival, and the Austin Reggae Festival.
In addition to the music scene, Austin offers activities like viewing the Austin Bats Under Congress Bridge, horseback rides through the Texas Hill Country, visiting the Museum of the Weird, and touring street art displays.
The city's offerings ensure families can create lasting memories and enjoy an engaging experience while visiting Austin.
Where to Stay in the Austin
Austin offers many options for your weekend stay, but one exceptional Vrbo stands out from the rest. Located in Central Austin, this pet and family-friendly property provides fast WIFI, a convenient 10-minute distance from downtown, a central location, and has received a remarkable 5-star rating.
Alternatively, we recommend Origin Hotel, a local establishment that perfectly reflects the unique charm of Austin. With onsite retail spaces, in-room Peloton bikes and yoga kits, pet-friendly accommodations, ADA accessibility, and stunning views, this hotel has everything your family needs for a comfortable and enjoyable stay.
Whether you choose the remarkable Vrbo or the exceptional Origin Hotel, both options promise to provide you with an unforgettable experience during your time in Austin.
6. San Antonio
- Excellent Match for: Fans of history and family fun
- Highlights of San Antonio:
- 3 hours and 30 minutes
- The Alamo and SeaWorld
- Natural bridge caverns
- Walkable city
How to Get to San Antonio
To reach San Antonio, take I-10 West and continue until you reach the 140B exit for the Alamodome. Follow the signs for the Institute of Texan Cultures. Then, turn right onto South Flores Street, and you will arrive in San Antonio.
Things to Do in San Antonio
San Antonio offers family-friendly attractions, including SeaWorld San Antonio, The Alamo, San Antonio Botanical Garden, Splashtown San Antonio, and the beloved San Antonio Riverwalk. Among these attractions, the San Antonio Riverwalk is a family favorite for several reasons. This charming waterway provides a scenic backdrop while offering a selection of restaurants, shopping opportunities, captivating public art displays, and live music performances.
Visiting San Antonio offers a range of attractions, whether you seek a relaxing getaway or an energetic adventure, such as exploring SeaWorld or other local parks.
In essence, San Antonio serves as an ideal weekend destination, accommodating various preferences and interests. Families can unwind and rejuvenate amidst a tranquil environment or embrace an upbeat and thrilling experience at the city's parks.
Where to Stay in San Antonio
You have numerous weekend stay options in San Antonio, but we highly recommend checking out this remarkable Airbnb. This beautifully renovated historic home offers a convenient location within walking distance of Southtown, the San Antonio Riverwalk, and Hemisfair Park. The hosts ensure a seamless check-in and check-out process, making your stay hassle-free.
We believe you'll also find great value in this local gem, Hotel Valencia Riverwalk. This luxurious and stunning hotel, situated right on the Riverwalk, promises to leave a lasting impression on the entire family. Hotel Valencia offers enticing packages that include River Boat tickets, valet parking, and more. Recognized as one of the top hotels in San Antonio and Texas, it guarantees an exceptional experience.
Whether you choose the unique Airbnb or the exquisite Hotel Valencia, both options provide exceptional accommodations that enhance your family's visit to San Antonio.
Best Getaways From Houston for Families
If you're interested in exploring cities near Houston that can be reached by plane within a few hours, here are some viable choices for your family to consider.
7. New Orleans, Louisiana
- Best known for: Mardi Gras and the French Quarter
- Highlights of New Orleans:
- The French Quarter & Bourbon Street
- Southern Hospitality
- Travel time is 48 minutes via plane
- Jazz Music
How to Get to New Orleans
The most efficient way to travel to New Orleans is by air, which takes approximately 50 minutes. However, you can reach New Orleans from Houston in around 5 1/2 hours if you prefer driving. You must take Highway U.S. 59 and proceed on I-10 East toward Beaumont to get there. Follow the signs for New Orleans along the way until you reach your destination in the city.
Things to Do in New Orleans
In Southern Louisiana, New Orleans is famous for its warm hospitality, charming atmosphere, mouthwatering cuisine, Mardi Gras parades, festivals, iconic jazz music, the beloved New Orleans Saints football team, the historic French Quarter, and unforgettable experiences.
New Orleans is a remarkable city, offering something for everyone in the family. Whether exploring the city on tour, indulging in delicious beignets at Café Du Monde, or visiting the Louisiana State Museum, your family will have an extraordinary time in The Big Easy. New Orleans is a class act, and its unique character makes it one of the most remarkable cities in the United States.
Where to Stay in New Orleans
When planning your visit to New Orleans, consider this fantastic Airbnb option. It is situated in a conveniently walkable neighborhood and offers easy access to the Garden District, Canal Street, and the renowned French Quarter. This charming and well-appointed home eagerly awaits you and your family, and the attentive host ensures that your every need is taken care of. Staying here is an absolute must for an unforgettable New Orleans trip.
Furthermore, I recommend the French Market Inn Hotel. It is located in one of the most coveted locations in the city, placing you right in the heart of the historic French Quarter and near attractions like Harrah's New Orleans Casino and Bourbon Street. The hotel not only offers an unbeatable location but also provides exceptional service that is truly unparalleled. The friendly staff goes above and beyond to treat guests like family, guaranteeing an incredible stay that will exceed your expectations.
8. El Paso
- Ideal Fit for: Lovers of cultural heritage
- Highlights of El Paso:
- Affordable housing costs
- Less than a 2 hour flight
- Star on the Mountain
- Close proximity to Mexico
How to Get to El Paso
If you're traveling from Houston IAH Airport to El Paso, we recommend a flight as it will take less than 2 hours, making it a convenient choice. However, if you prefer a scenic drive, you can take the I-10 West and US-87 North routes, leading you to El Paso. Remember that driving would result in a longer journey of approximately 11 hours, allowing you to enjoy the landscapes along the way.
Things to Do in El Paso
El Paso is known for its peaceful environment and affordable living, making it an attractive place for residents. The city's numerous historic sites offer a glimpse into its rich heritage. When visiting El Paso, your family can explore destinations such as the Franklin Mountains State Park for scenic adventures and the El Paso Holocaust Museum for educational insights. Take advantage of the El Paso Downtown Art and Farmers Market, where you can shop for local artwork and fresh produce. Lastly, the iconic Star on the Mountain, an artificial landmark illuminating Franklin Mountain, is captivating for locals and visitors.
El Paso offers a tranquil and affordable lifestyle and a range of historical attractions. From exploring the Franklin Mountains to visiting museums and markets, there are plenty of opportunities for your family to delve into the city's culture and natural beauty. And, of course, remember to marvel at the Star on the Mountain, a unique symbol of El Paso's charm.
Where to Stay in El Paso
We understand the importance of having enough space for you and your family during your stay in El Paso. With that in mind, we highly recommend this comfortable and fully furnished Vrbo accommodation. The host ensures that guests are well taken care of, providing amenities such as fast WIFI, ample blankets, TVs with Netflix in all four bedrooms, and memory foam mattresses for a restful night's sleep.
Alternatively, if you prefer a luxurious hotel experience, Hotel Paso Del Norte Autograph Collection is an excellent choice. Located in downtown El Paso, this hotel offers breakfast, a restaurant, free WIFI, a spa, and even welcomes your pets. With its exceptional amenities and welcoming atmosphere, it guarantees to be a home away from home during your visit.
9. Orlando, Florida
- Great for: Fans of theme parks
- Highlights of Orlando:
- Walt Disney World Resort
- Universal Orlando Resort
- 2 and a half hour flight
- Family-friendly attractions
How to Get to Orlando
The journey from Houston to Orlando by car takes approximately 14 hours, which can be quite a long drive. However, if you and your family are ready for the adventure, you can follow the route by taking I-10 East towards Beaumont and then following the signs for New Orleans/Hammond. Continuing on I-10 East, you will pass through Mississippi and Alabama before entering Florida. From there, you'll exit towards FL-408 East and continue following the signs until you reach Orlando.
Alternatively, we recommend a flight, as it takes less than 3 hours to fly from Houston to Orlando. This option allows for a quicker and more convenient travel experience, especially for those seeking to minimize travel time.
Things to Do in Orlando
If you and your family are avid theme park enthusiasts, Orlando is your ultimate destination! Some must-visit parks include Walt Disney World Resort, SeaWorld Orlando, Universal Orlando Resort, Legoland, and Gatorland. Orlando proudly holds the title of the world's theme park capital, ensuring an unforgettable experience for kids and families.
But the excitement doesn't stop there. Orlando offers a wide range of additional activities to keep everyone entertained. From exploring interactive exhibits at the Orlando Science Center to unleashing creativity at the Crayola Experience, the city provides endless opportunities for educational and engaging adventures. And for those seeking a closer encounter with nature, the Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens is a great place to discover a variety of animals and enjoy a splash in the playground.
With its abundant attractions and entertainment options, Orlando guarantees a fantastic time for every visitor. Whether you're exploring magical worlds at theme parks or discovering the wonders of science and wildlife, the city's vibrant atmosphere ensures that fun and excitement are always just around the corner. If you do decide to visit Orlando, you can save a lot of money if you plan to visit some of the major attractions and theme parks if you pick up an Orlando CityPass first.
Where to Stay in Orlando
In sunny Orlando, there is no shortage of fantastic Airbnb options. However, we have a recommendation that truly stands out. This breathtakingly beautiful Airbnb offers a stunning Disney view and an unforgettable experience. With amenities like free parking, reliable WIFI, and a private balcony, this condo ensures a comfortable and enjoyable stay for you and your family.
If you prefer the convenience and luxury of a hotel, consider the Lake Nona Wave Hotel. This exceptional hotel celebrates local events and offers a wide selection of room options to suit your needs. Indulge in the hotel's fine cuisine and participate in their weekly mixology classes for a delightful culinary experience. Furthermore, the Lake Nona Wave Hotel prioritizes health and wellness, providing a 24-hour TechnoGym Fitness Center, rock climbing facilities, and an aquatics center with multiple pools, including a lap pool and a family pool.
No matter where you stay or which city you visit, there are many impressive and memorable choices for a family weekend getaways from Houston. Soak up the sun, enjoy the local attractions, and create lasting memories in any of these vibrant cities!