It’s sunny and warm in Houston. The kids are home from school and they’re eager to get out and explore. The good news is that Houston is filled with kid-friendly museums, attractions and restaurants for you to fill your days. Whether you’re a local or just visiting for a few days, build your summer fun itinerary from this list of Houston’s top activities.

Museums

Houston has an array of world-class museums, and while they’re great year-round, during the summer they’re the perfect destination to escape the heat. Plus, many of the city’s best museums offer special programming during the summer months.

At The Children’s Museum of Houston, beat the summer boredom with daily activities, performances, character appearances and more. All are part of the museum’s Superpowered Summer, which runs through Labor Day. Not too far from there, you’ll find the Houston Museum of Natural Science, where you can spend a whole day learning about nature’s marvels – the Paleontology Hall and Cockrell Butterfly Center are favorites among the younger crowd. For art lovers, the Museum of Fine Arts has activities for the entire family, from music on the plaza, to storytimes and playdates for the little ones and studio time for the family on Sundays.

Another fun summer option is the Lone Star Flight Museum, which has a packed summer calendar with flight demos on Saturdays, pilot talks, robotics demos and movies on the hangar.

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Water Parks and Outdoor Fun

Water parks are a must during the summer in Houston. Head to Typhoon Texas in Katy, a 45-acre water park with 1.3 miles of slides, a kids play area, a 25,000-square-foot wave pool and a relaxing lazy river. In Spring, Wet ‘n’ Wild Splashtown offers action-packed water fun, including a seven-story, floor-dropping thrill ride and a raft ride through twisty tunnels. See more Houston-area water parks.

Your kiddos will also love one of H-Town’s many amazing parks. A favorite activity among Houstonians is catching a free performance at Miller Outdoor Theatre in Hermann Park. Its performance calendar includes free kids and family-friendly performances, including its ExxonMobil Summer Symphony Nights series.

Parks such as Discovery Green and Levy Park offer kids workshops, storytimes, live music and fitness classes that kids and adults alike will enjoy. To cool off, the kids can take advantage of the parks’ splash pads. Rent a bike or kayak at Buffalo Bayou or head to Evelyn’s Park in Bellaire and have a picnic at the table of the Mad Hatter’s tea party, the scene set by the park’s interactive Move One Place On sculpture. See more Houston parks.


Nearby Attractions

Looking for a quick trip out of town? Take your kids to Gator Country in Beaumont for a day of learning about alligators. From holding baby gators to feeding them, the kids won’t run out of fun things to do at this alligator-themed entertainment park. While in Beaumont, visit the Texas Energy Museum and Spindletop Gladys City Boomtown Museum to learkids. Just 20 miles from Houston, Kemah’s arcade games, carousel, retail shops and themed restaurants will keep your family entertainedn about the history of texas oil. For summer vibes, head to Kemah Boardwalk, a fun, nearby destination perfect for kids. Just 20 miles from Houston, Kemah’s arcade games, carousel, retail shops and themed restaurants will keep your family entertained.


Restaurants

The kids will be hungry and ready to eat after so much activity. Houston has more than 8,000 restaurants, making it hard to choose where to go for a bite, but you’ll find many child-friendly options. When in downtown, Local Foods Downtown with its fresh salads and sandwiches is a great option for parents and kids. Ivy & James at Evelyn’s Park is also a big hit among families. Not only is it highly convenient given its location inside the park, its food is good, too. Punk’s Simple Southern Food in Rice Village offers kiddos choices like sliders, mini hot dogs, popcorn shrimp and a simple plate of Ritz crackers with cheese and ham. Not too far from the Galleria, Beaver’s Westheimer has good food and a fun patio with a small section for the kids to play. Find more kid-friendly restaurants here.

To enjoy all that Houston has to offer this summer, check out our Summer of Fun Pass. It’s good through Labor Day and includes admission to many of the museums and attractions mentioned here at a discount.