Table of Contents[Hide][Show]
- Top Things to Do in Bryan TX
- Aggieland Safari Tour
- Brazos Valley Museum of Natural History
- Children’s Museum of the Brazos Valley
- Brazos Valley African American Museum
- Lake Bryan
- Brazos Valley Bombers
- Walking Downtown Bryan
- Carnegie History Center
- First Friday
- Farmers Market
- Shopping in Downtown Bryan
- Dining in Downtown Bryan
- Where to Stay in Bryan TX
- Things to Do Near Bryan
- George H.W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum
- Museum of the American GI
- Kyle Field 12th Man Tour
- Bonfire Memorial at TAMU
- Santa’s Wonderland
If you’re on a family road trip in Texas, include a stop in Bryan. Located in the Brazos Valley between the state’s major cities, Bryan has loads of activities for kids of all ages. There’s a children’s museum for toddlers and plenty of outdoor fun for teens. Here are the best things to do with kids in and around Bryan, Texas.
The writer was hosted.
Top Things to Do in Bryan TX
In the heart of the Brazos River Valley, Bryan sits in-between Houston, Dallas/Ft. Worth and Austin. Its neighbor, College Station, is home to one of the largest universities in Texas – Texas A&M – though Bryan is a destination on its own. Find museums and activities galore along with a walkable downtown for families plus terrific restaurants. Here are the top things to do in Bryan, Texas.
This is one of the best things to do in Bryan TX, with or without the kids. The Aggieland Safari Tour is like a walk-thru adventure zoo paired with a drive-thru wildlife safari. Find over 700 animals (with babies throughout the season) in a complex of over 250 acres.
Walk through the adventure zoo first to see the giraffes, hippos and reptiles along with birds and more. Purchase some lettuce for feeding animals like the giraffes and tortoises.
Guides are super excited to share their knowledge. Ask anything from the animal names (both scientific and their nicknames) to the color of the animal’s scat (poop). It’s a few miles outside of downtown Bryan but definitely worth the drive and some visitors come all the way from the Houston area to see the Aggieland Safari Tour. Driving through in your own car is super convenient for little kids and babies. I visited without my kids and I snapped tons of pictures of the animals. I loved the parakeet enclosure the best since they would land on you (younger kids might be a bit timid about this).
Located at 18074 FM 974. Open daily 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (last car through the gates at 4 p.m.) Admission varies by age and kids 2 and under enter for free. Online discounts are available. School bus tours given on weekends.
With a new exhibition every four months, the Brazos Valley Museum of Natural History offers a lot of variety for a smaller museum. See dinosaur bones, an active bee hive, a mineral collection and more. It’s one of the top things to do in Bryan, TX and I found the live bee hive fascinating.
Also check out Dollar Day on the first Tuesday where everyone gets in for, you guessed it, a dollar. Celebrating its 60th Anniversary in 2021.
Located at 3232 Briarcrest Dr. Open Tuesday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission based on age and kids 3 and under are free.
At a new location in the first phase of the Lake Walk development and next to The Stella Hotel, find a bright and happy place for babies to 12-year-olds. The Children’s Museum is divided into areas with monthly themes and is one of the top things to do in Bryan TX. During my visit, the tiny H-E-B grocery was adorable and included shopping carts.
The tiny town and exploration indoor climbing structure are favorites. Find a craft space and manipulative games too. The Children’s Museum of the Brazos Valley is best suited for preschoolers to the early grades.
Located at 4114 Lake Atlas Dr. Suite 110. Open Tuesday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (open to 7 p.m. on Friday) and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. Admission for everyone over 1, babies are free. Discounts for adults. Yes. Visitors over 15 get a discount.
Learn about the local history of African Americans in the Brazos Valley area, including notable people, like athletes. Find oral histories along with displays depicting life through the years.
The African American Museum also hosts visiting exhibits that cover general issues of life in Brazos Valley.
Located at 500 E. Pruitt St. Open Tuesday to Friday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission based on age and kids 5 and under are free.
If you own a boat, consider exploring Lake Bryan, a 829-acre lake. It’s a boating, fishing and camping destination, just seven miles northeast from downtown Bryan.
Open daily from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m. from spring to fall and 8 p.m. in the winter. Admission charged per vehicle.
Brazos Valley Bombers
Take in a baseball game! The Brazos Valley Bombers are a collegiate summer team. Home games are played at Travis Field (Edible Field) located at 2200 Bomber Dr. Admission.
TravelingMom Tip: TravelingMom Nasreen Stump lives locally and highly recommends buying your tickets online in advance. You’ll save $3/ticket over the gate price. Even if you’re not sure on plans, tickets can be transferred to a later game date if something changes!
Walking Downtown Bryan
Thanks to a downtown streetscape and lots of covered sidewalks, the historic downtown Bryan district is a destination with restaurants, live music, shopping and art galleries. As a bonus, the parking is free downtown and I didn’t have a problem finding a spot during my trip. With trees lining the street, downtown Bryan was pleasant to walk, even in the middle of the summer.
Find historic buildings like the LaSalle Hotel, at 120 S. Main St. or The Queen Theater, at 110 S. Main St.
Carnegie History Center
While walking along Main Street, take a few minutes to appreciate the original Carnegie library. It’s a must for architecture fans, like me, since only a handful of Carnegie Libraries still exist.
In 1902, Andrew Carnegie awarded the city of Bryan one of his library grants to construct a library for Bryan. The building is Greek Revival in a Greek Cross Plan designed by a local architect.
Now it houses the genealogy records for the area. Find both physical records along with online services for genealogy research. There’s a knowledgeable staff to help with your ancestry search.
Located at 111 Main St. Open Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Free to enter.
From 5 p.m. to 11 p.m. on the first Friday of the month, the streets of downtown Bryan close for free family friendly events with extended shopping hours, dining and activities. Live music can be found at the Palace Outdoor amphitheater. Food trucks are also set up in the area.
During the year, First Friday hosts special events and seasonal activities, like holidays lights and fall celebrations. So pack up the stroller for an easy night out.
Stroll the stalls of the Farmers Market on Saturday mornings from 8 a.m. to noon. Located at 500 N. Main St. Free to enter.
Shopping in Downtown Bryan
Find unique and locally owned shopping in downtown Bryan. Consider stopping by Catalena Hatters for a custom cowboy hat, located at 203 N. Main St. Another must for downtown Bryan is Sparrow Lane for Gifts and Antiques, located at 203 S. Main St.
Dining in Downtown Bryan
Find close to 30 different establishments in the downtown Bryan district.
- Ronin Restaurant serves a farm-to-table menu at 800 N. Main St.
- RX Pizza is known for pizza at 200 W. 26th St.
- All the King’s Men BBQ is located at 112 S. Main St.
Another must is in nearby Midtown. Chicken Oil Restaurant serves burgers and more. Located at 3600 S. College Ave.
Where to Stay in Bryan TX
The Stella Hotel was awarded the 2020 #3 Best Hotel in Texas in the Readers’ Choice Award from Conde Nast. It offers family-friendly accommodations with two restaurants, an outdoor pool and the Lake Walk area is just steps from the lobby door. Also find the Children’s Museum of the Brazos Valley located nearby.
I stayed at The Stella Hotel and found the hotel to be a great blend of high-end accommodations with a nearby coffee shop and a large pool with lots of loungers. It’s across from a lake that features a pavilion with scheduled special events and cool night lighting. The Stella Hotel even offers complimentary bikes for its guests.
Located at 4100 Lake Atlas Dr. 2021 room rates from $120.
Things to Do Near Bryan
Though I didn’t visit on this trip, Texas A&M University is just a few miles away. So if you’re in the College Station area for a college visit or to see a football game, here are several top things to do.
Honoring the 41st President of the United States, explore the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum to learn more about his presidency from 1989 to 1993.
Located at 4100 George Bush Dr. W in College Station. Currently closed, you can check the website for reopening information.
This is a living history museum dedicated to the U.S. servicemen and women. the Museum of the American GI hosts historical reenactments and offers a large collection of tanks.
Located at 19142 Highway 6 in College Station. Open Wednesday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. Admission based on age and kids 4 and under are free.
Kyle Field 12th Man Tour
Tour the Texas Aggies football stadium in this behind-the-scenes tour.
Kyle Field is located at 756 Houston St.
In 1999, the annual bonfire that students built before the University of Texas and Texas A&M game collapsed tragically killing 12 students. In 2004, the Bonfire Memorial opened at the exact location of the original collapse.
Located on the Texas A&M University campus at the History Walk and Spirit Walk.
This annual holiday event is a family tradition for those in Bryan, College Station and the surrounding area. Read more in TravelingMom’s article.