Whether you're a fan of bird watching or just a fan of nature, the Bentsen-Rio Grande Valley State Park is the perfect place to revel in both. As the World Birding Center's headquarters, the 760-acre attraction offers a look into the habitats of rare birds that can only be seen in deep South Texas.
Show the kids a hands-on, fun learning experience at the Children's Museum of Brownsville. Exhibits and attractions like Under the Sea, Construction Zone, Dr. Bones Health Clinic, and Texas Farmhouse will keep the kids engaged during their journey through this imagination-oriented museum.
Get a hands-on experience with sea life while exploring the attractions at the Dolphin Research and Sea Life Nature Center. While you're there, you'll get an opportunity to hold living starfish, hermit crabs, sea urchins, and snails. Be sure to learn about the role that the Sea Life Nature Center has played in coastal conservation and the welfare of the ocean's inhabitants.
Monkey around the Gladys Porter Zoo, where you can hang out with animals like gorillas, wallabies, rhinos, zebras, crocodiles, lions, kangaroos, and giraffes. The zoo's exhibits and attractions will lead you to far off lands like Asia, Africa, and Australia; while also showcasing wildlife here in the United States, and creatures of the ocean.
Born to fly? Head to Gravity Adventure Park and get in line for the Lone Star State's tallest bungee jump, the Bungee Grande; or try falling from the ground up on the reverse bungee ride, The Rocket.
The kids probably aren't tall enough to enjoy the thrills of these crazy bungee rides, but attractions like kiddie cars, Frog Hopper, and Trampoline Thing should keep them occupied for a while. If you've birthed a little daredevil, send them on the Bungee Chico to experience a pint-sized version of bungee jumping.
Texas has a history as big as the state itself, so it's no wonder that the city of Harlingen has a few pages for the history books as well. The Harlingen Arts & Heritage Museum offers an exploration of the region's history and culture. The stories are told through rotating exhibits and attractions that feature historical objects, photos, and art.
Enter a world of arts and sciences at the IMAS. The International Museum of Art and Science is home to unique exhibitions and attractions that feature artworks in many forms, and the various sciences found in nature. On your visit, be sure to let the kids explore the KidsZone for hands-on, educational fun.
For some fun in the sun, head to Isla Blanca Park. Put your toes in the sand and feel free to explore over a mile of beautiful beachfront, try fishing off the jetties, splash around in the surf, and soak up the sun. The park is located on South Padre Island, so after the beach you can explore local attractions or head out for some tasty seafood and a night on the town - island style.
Take in the beauty of the Lower Rio Grande Valley National Wildlife Refuge. The refuge rests on the international border between our nation and Mexico, and is home to over 1,200 types of plants, 700 kinds of animals and birds, and 300 kinds of butterflies - it doesn't get more beautiful than this. Wear your comfy shoes for walking the trails and bring the sunscreen, the Texas sun is a hot one.
Get ready for a history lesson at the Mission Historical Museum. The museum showcases artifacts and attractions like early maps, household items, historic costumes, tools, documents, and photographs, in exhibits that explain the colorful past of Mission, Texas. If you want to dig deeper into Texas history, explore the texts housed in the on site library.
Immerse yourself in the culture and heritage of the southernmost part of the Lone Star State at the Museum of South Texas History. Check out the history and heritage outlined by exhibits and attractions, spanning from prehistoric times through the 20th century. Photographs, documents, books, maps and other artifacts help to illustrate the story of life in this region of the state.
Take a stroll through the beautiful Quinta Mazatlan mansion, and explore the 20-acre property surrounding the home.
The Spanish-style, 1930s estate is home to interesting exhibits and attractions, and the grounds around the building offer various nature trails that venture through the Rio Grande Valley Thornforest. As you walk along the trails, you'll see native vegetation like the Prickly Pear Cactus and birds like the Green Jay, and the Buff-bellied Hummingbird.
Spend a day at the Santa Ana National Wildlife Refuge, and learn about the abundant South Texas wildlife.
Before you hit the trails, hang out in the visitor center where you'll become familiar with the area's inhabitants and vegetation through interesting exhibits and attractions. When you are venturing along your trek, you will see animals like squirrels, armadillos, bobcats, coyotes, a wide variety of birds, and hundreds of butterflies.
Be ready for some wet and wild fun at Schlitterbahn Beach Waterpark. This South Padre Island destination offers thirteen water slides and a number of water attractions to cool you off in the Texas heat. Try your surfing skills on the Boogie Bahn, take a ride on the Rio Aventura, or hang out on Rio Beach - whatever you do, don't forget the sunscreen.
"Yo ho, yo ho, a pirate's life for me!" Enjoy the stuff of legends as you set sail on The Black Dragon pirate ship cruises.
The ship attraction is a replica of an old Spanish galleon with modern-day engine capabilities, and amenities like restrooms. While on your voyage, you'll hear pirate tales and play pirate-themed games like Pirate Ship Dart Throw and Cannon Ball Toss. Stop into the gift shop to get some loot to remember your day as a pirate.
For bumper boats, go-karts, miniature golf, and batting cages in the RGV, there's one attraction that outshines them all. Head to The Zone Action Park to race go-karts and sail around on bumper boats.
If miniature golf and batting cages don't have you pumped up and ready to play, hang out in the game room. Arcade favorites like Skeeball, Basket Fever, Water Race, and Dance Dance Revolution are waiting for you to feed them your tokens and earn the next high score.