Day 1 You'll See:
Day 2 You'll See:
- Houston Arboretum
- Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens
- Buffalo Bayou Park
- River Oaks Theater
Day 3 You'll See:
Museums, Aquariums, and Parks...oh my! Get ready for a Houston experience like no other, a 3-day trip all around the cities most popular attractions. This trip option is excellent for any age!
Julia Ideson Building
The Julia Ideson Building is one of the most beautiful and historic spots you can visit while in town! This breathtaking Spanish architecture is very grandiose, with Spanish brick floors, marble pillars, and grand staircases throughout. You can see several impressive original archives in here, as well as get a great view of the featured art, the gorgeous gold and wood painted flowers on the ceiling (look up!). It is in this room that you can also learn more about the building's namesake herself, Julia Bedford Ideson. Ideson was the first head librarian in the Houston Public Library System, a position she held for a little over 40 years.
The 6-acre entertainment and dining complex holds over 500,000 gallons of the aquatic display, one full-service restaurant, an upscale bar, and several shopping opportunities along the way. There are different games and 'rides' within the complex as well, which used to be the city's fire station and waterworks home, actually. Kiddos will love the different choices for quick thrills such as Shark Voyage, a journey into the lions, or rather sharks, den, or the Lighthouse Dive adrenaline cruiser!
Historic Market Square Park
They dubbed this metro-to-be as the 'city of the future', and for over 100 years the park has stood as a city cornerstone and civic center. While here your group can follow the black granite band around the park and tour the artwork, with photography, a mosaic fountain, and perhaps the most breathtaking piece, the James Surls Point of View 25-foot painted steel and wood sculpture. You can also choose to get a bit of exercise, relax, have a picnic lunch, shop the open air market, eat at Niko Niko's sidewalk cafe, or spend some time meditating in Lauren's Garden.
Bat Bridge Pontoon Tour
Each night during Houston's sultry summer months, during that magical moment between sunset and dusk, you can head to Waugh Drive Bridge and see over 250,000 Mexican Free-Tail bats emerge from the caverns. This incredible sight attracts quite the crowd each night (unless the weather prevents so, of course), both locals and tourists awed by the event. The general suggestion is to get to the bridge 15-30 minutes before sunset for the best viewing chances. If interested, your group can take a Waugh Drive Bat Colony Pontoon Boat tour, offered the 2nd and 4th Fridays April through September. The ride lasts about an hour and a half and not only gets you close to the colonies cave quarters, but also informs you on the bats, their part in the local eco-system, and colony habits in general. This tour will run you about $30 for adults, and children under 4 cannot participate.
While here your student group will be able to participate in several activities, from the regular onsite activities offered to all guests, to customized educational journeys specifically put together for your group. There are half day guided field trip experiences and Discovery Room programs that are particularly popular with groups, and a full day option that combines the two to provide hands-on indoor and outdoor educational activities in relation to nature and wildlife. Your group will learn about life cycles, food chains, habitats, and food webs, among other related topics. Your group can also book a full day Special Program that revolves around Earth Science and Weather Phenomena.
Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens
Welcome to Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens, the 14-acre art and garden facility located at the Museum of Fine Arts. With an emphasis on American decorative arts, Bayou Bend holds one of the finest collections of American furnishings, silver, ceramics, and paintings in the entire world.The manicured gardens outside were first planted in 1927 by Ima Hogg and feature native plants and woodland ravines. Hogg wanted to capture her love for 'beauty, flowers, natural woodlands, and history' within the garden, something she did very well, in our opinion
Buffalo Bayou Park
Stretching across 160 acres, between Shepherd Drive and Sabine Street, Buffalo Bayou Park provides plenty of room to walk, run, cycle, picnic, or just relax and enjoy your surroundings. Not only is there plenty of open space and trails for all of these activities, but you can also visit several different subsections of the park. Children will love the Nature Play Area and Picnic Zone, as well as the onsite skatepark. Tinsley Park, the Wortham Grove, Lost Lake, and the Houston Officer Memorial all provide different scenery and activities, as well.
River Oaks Theater
Relax tonight and take in a flick at River Oaks Theater. Blockbusters, indie films, and international cinema are River Oaks specialty!
Houston Museum of Natural Science
. One of our personal favorite things about this museum is that it offers customized field trip packages so that your school group can match your visit with your particular theme of learning or curriculum requirements at the time. Teachers also get what is called 'Teachers Choice' during their visit and get their own choice of Imax or Planetarium show out of what is available. There are Labs on Demand, private tours, Discovery Tours, and scout tours, as well.
Be sure to save enough time to see ALL of the wonderful animal exhibits such as the African Forest, Carruth Natural Encounters, Se Lion Lab, and Children's Zoo. You can take part in group visit activities, curriculum-based hands-on experiences, and up close and personal animal encounters while here, or just enjoy your day wandering around and learning about all the different animals. You will see so many different species and ecosystems, from African Tamarins and Cheetahs to Houston Toads and Anderson Newts!